Friday, June 24, 2016

Cards set to face Mariners in rare Seattle visit

Carlos Martinez will try to continue his June success against an unfamiliar opponent on Friday at Safeco Field.
The Cardinals right-hander will make his first career start against the Mariners in the opener of a three-game series. St. Louis has not played at Seattle since 2002.
Last time out, Martinez tossed seven scoreless innings, and he is 2-0 with a 1.69 ERA in three June starts.
Veteran lefty Wade LeBlanc, recently acquired by Seattle in a trade with the Blue Jays, is expected to make the start for the Mariners. He went 7-2 with a 1.71 ERA in 14 starts at Triple-A Buffalo. He would be replacing Taijuan Walker, who has tendinitis in the arch of his right foot.
Walker is one of four Seattle injured starting pitchers, joining Felix Hernandez (right calf strain), Wade Miley (left shoulder) and Adrian Sampson (right elbow). Sampson left Thursday's game at Detroit with elbow discomfort before even throwing the first pitch, in turn, leading to a shortened bullpen.
Things to know about this game
• Martinez gave up four hits in his seven scoreless innings for a no-decision against the Rangers in his last start, which was also his first career start against an American League West team.
• LeBlanc is 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in three career games against the Cardinals. He has pitched for the Padres, Marlins, Astros, Angels and Yankees in parts of seven Major League seasons.
• The Mariners hit four solo home runs Thursday, including two from Nelson Cruz (18), to run their season total to 109, putting them second in the Major Leagues behind Baltimore (111).

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