Toronto Blue Jays News

Blue Jays vs. Mariners: The fact-facts series preview

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Jul 15, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano (22) walks off the field between innings during the game against the Houston Astros at Safeco Field. Houston defeated Seattle 7-3. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 15, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano (22) walks off the field between innings during the game against the Houston Astros at Safeco Field. Houston defeated Seattle 7-3. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Toronto Blue Jays return to the Rogers Centre for their first home game since July 10th

Following the All-Star break and a five-game road trip through Oakland and Arizona, the Toronto Blue Jays are back at the Dome for a nine-game home stand that will bring them right up to the end of July.

The Mariners find themselves in a similar position in the American League West to the Yankees in the AL East. They currently sit at 48-47, 6.5 games behind the division-leading Rangers and three behind the Astros, who sit second are are currently chasing the Blue Jays in the tight AL Wild Card race.

This weekend’s series could very well tilt the Mariners’ plans on potential trade options like Steve Cishek and former Jay Adam Lind. Their recent trade of Mike Montgomery to the Chicago Cubs, however, suggests that the Mariners aren’t exactly itching to be buyers.

Big Picture Stats:

  • The Mariners have been strong enough with the bats. Their 451 runs scored rank them ninth in baseball, just 27 behind the Blue Jays who rank fifth.
  • Seattle actually tops Toronto when it comes to home runs… by one. Their total of 138 puts them just four behind the Baltimore Orioles for top spot in the majors.
  • Hitting .260 as a team, the Mariners rank .260.

Mariners to Watch:

  • Robinson Cano is back to looking like his old self. The second-baseman has hit 22 home runs this season, batting .304 and driving in 60 runs.
  • Nelson Cruz is swinging a heavy bat himself, currently sitting at 23 home runs with a .284 average, a  .370 on-base percentage and 58 RBI.
  • Kyle Seager is hitting .283 with 18 home runs and 63 RBI.
  • Leonys Martin (13), Seth Smith (11), and Dae-ho Lee (10) have all produced double-digit home runs to support the heart of the order.
  • Closer Steve Cishek has racked up 22 saves and is rumours to be on the trading block. The right-hander has a 2.93 ERA with 55 strikeouts in 43 innings.
  • Rookie Edwin Diaz might be Seattle’s best reliever. Since being recalled from double-A Jackson, the 22-year-old fireballer has struck out a baffling 42 hitters in 20.2 innings.

Next: Blue Jays rumours: Scouts watched Cashner, Sabathia

Scheduled Starters:

Game 1:  Friday, July 22nd  –  7:07 p.m. ET
Marco Estrada (5-3, 2.93 ERA)  vs.  James Paxton (2-4, 4.56 ERA)

Game 2:  Saturday, July 23rd  –  1:07 p.m. ET
R.A. Dickey (7-10, 4.11 ERA)  vs.  Hisashi Iwakuma (10-6, 4.01 ERA)

Game 3:  Sunday, July 24th  –  1:07 p.m. ET
J.A. Happ (12-3, 3.43 ERA)  vs.  Wade LeBlanc (1-0, 3.63 ERA)

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