All-Star George Kirby starts for M’s in opener vs. Astros

All-Star George Kirby starts for M's in opener vs. Astros


The Houston Astros will look to build on their four-game winning streak when they welcome the Seattle Mariners on Thursday for the opener of a four-game series

Houston completed a two-game sweep of the visiting Colorado Rockies on Wednesday behind a two-home run afternoon from Yainer Diaz. The catcher’s solo and two-run round-trippers powered the Astros to a 6-4 victory, and their fourth win in a row overall

The home runs were Diaz’s ninth and 10th of the season, with seven of them coming since June 14.

“Studying the pitcher a little bit more, going up there with a better plan,” Diaz told AT&T Sports Southwest through an interpreter in his postgame interview on Wednesday. “That’s helped me a lot.”

Diaz will try to continue that hot streak in the upcoming American League West series.

Seattle had its four-game winning streak end on Wednesday in the finale of a three-game series at San Francisco.

The Mariners, coming off two victories over the AL-leading Tampa Bay Rays, beat the Giants 6-0 and 6-5 before managing just seven hits in a 2-0 loss to end the set

Despite the team’s inability to score, Seattle’s Julio Rodriguez remained hot at the plate. He went 2-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to five games, during which he is 10-for-23 (.435).

He has collected multiple hits in four of the past five games and in 18 of his past 39 contests.

“There’s still work to do,” Rodriguez said of his recent play. “We’ve got to keep moving forward. There’s still games to win, and that was my focus.”

Rodriguez was added to the AL All-Star team as a sub on Tuesday, as was teammate George Kirby, who is slated to start on Thursday.

Kirby (7-7, 3.21 ERA) picked up a win in his latest start, allowing just two hits and two runs over seven innings with seven strikeouts and two walks on Saturday against Tampa Bay.

Kirby has faced the Astros just once in his career, a start on July 31, 2022, in Houston. He struck out seven while giving up two runs on four hits and one walk over four innings in a no-decision

The Astros had not named a starting pitcher as of Thursday morning

Houston is likely to be without Jose Altuve for the start of the series. The second baseman missed the past two games due to a left oblique injury, and he was headed for an MRI exam.

“He’s going to be evaluated more (Thursday),” Astros general manager Dana Brown said on Wednesday. “He came in today feeling a lot better, so we don’t feel like it’s the same type of injury as the other oblique that he had (earlier in the season), so that was good news. We’re in no rush to try to rush him back prior to the (All-Star) break.

The upcoming series will be the first between the AL West rivals since the Mariners took two of three in a May 5-7 set at Seattle

–Field Level Media


Original source here

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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.