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Reply To: MLB Previews, Articles, Info, etc, Wednesday 9/30/15

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Preview: Astros at Mariners

GAME: Houston Astros (83-75) at Seattle Mariners (75-83)
DATE/TIME: Wednesday, September 30 – 10:10 PM EST
WHERE: Safeco Field, Seattle, Washington
LINE: N/A TOTAL: N/A

The Houston Astros suffered a devastating defeat in their pursuit of a playoff spot and attempt to bounce back when they visit the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday. Houston dropped a 6-4 decision to Seattle on Tuesday, allowing the Los Angeles Angels to take possession of the American League’s second wild-card spot.

The Astros are a half-game behind the streaking Angels for the wild card and slipped to 2 1/2 behind the first-place Texas Rangers in the AL West. Houston is just 30-47 on the road and all its remaining games are away games with the series finale against the Mariners followed by a three-game trip to Arizona. Seattle snapped a six-game skid Tuesday with outfielder Shawn O’Malley delivering a tiebreaking two-run single in the bottom of the eighth. Mariners left fielder Franklin Gutierrez is 10-for-23 with three homers and two doubles against scheduled Astros starter Scott Kazmir.

TV: 10:10 p.m. ET, ROOT (Houston, Seattle)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Astros LH Scott Kazmir (7-11, 2.97 ERA) vs. Mariners TBA

Kazmir is winless in his last six starts and was shelled by Texas in his last outing. He gave up six runs and 10 hits in 3 2/3 innings while suffering his third straight defeat and is just 2-6 with a 3.91 ERA in 12 starts since being acquired from the Oakland Athletics. Kazmir is 1-0 with a 1.46 ERA in two 2015 outings against Seattle and stands 5-4 with a 3.08 ERA in 15 career starts.

Seattle was hoping left-hander James Paxton would make this start but the hurler who was limited to 13 starts due to injury was shut down for the season Tuesday. Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon is opting for a bullpen approach and declined to say which pitcher would start the game in his postgame news conference. Possible candidates to be the first on the mound include right-hander Mayckol Guaipe (0-3, 5.32) and left-hander David Rollins (0-2, 7.88 ERA).

WALK-OFFS

1. Mariners 2B Robinson Cano hit his 20th homer and had three RBIs on Tuesday to extend his hitting streak to 12 games.

2. Houston 3B Jed Lowrie is 1-for-20 over his past six contests and left Tuesday’s game with quadriceps soreness.

3. Seattle RF Nelson Cruz is 0-for-11 with nine strikeouts over the last three games.

PREDICTION: Astros 5, Mariners 4