Who better to end the second-longest losing streak of the season then your ace, right?
That’s the task assigned to Felix Hernandez, who takes the mound for the Mariners this afternoon looking to end the team’s run of five-straight defeats — all at home. Today marks the end of a six-game homestand that started with a three-game sweep by the Angels and Texas (today’s opponent) winning the first two games of this series, including a bizarre one Tuesday that saw the Rangers score the winning run in extra innings on a balk.
Seattle’s worst drought this season was going eight games without a win from May 17-25 against Cleveland, the Angeles and Texas.
Up next is an eight-game road trip with stop at Houston and Kansas City. More pregame notes to come followed by a separate post for the game thread.
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I’ll get to more from a pregame meeting with manager Eric Wedge in a bit, but first here’s an interesting quote when asked if some of the younger players on the team have shown leadership qualities in the clubhouse.
“There are a couple younger guys that have a chance to do it,” Wedge said. “I’d like to see them do it. I think they’re going to get to a point where they hold each other accountable, ride each other. But I think there have been some positives with the veterans in regard to that this year; I think there have been some disappointments within the veterans in regard to that this year. I don’t mind saying it. It’s tough to find leadership with people. Hell, everybody wants to be liked and everybody is afraid of confrontation. Show me a leader that wants both of those things and I’ll show you a bad leader.”
Wedge didn’t specify which veterans in particular had disappointed.
Also put on notice? The middle of the lineup.
“You need those guys in the middle to do more,” Wedge said. “We need those guys int the middle to start producing, getting some big hits for us. But we still need to do it from 1 through 9. I felt like we were really getting close to it, 1 through 9, for a while, so my goal right now is to just to get things back in line here so we can keep moving forward.”