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Game No. 14 Preview: Houston Astros at Seattle Mariners

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Collin McHugh returns to the scene of his Astros debut.

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Astros (7-6) at Seattle Mariners (5-8), 9:10 p.m. (CST)

TV: Roots Sports SW, MLB.TV
Radio: KBME 790 AM, KLAT 1010 AM
Mariners SBNation BlogLookout Landing

Pitching matchup

RHP Collin McHugh (2-0, 1.54 ERA 1.11 WHIP) vs. RHP Taijuan Walker (0-2, 17.18 ERA, 2.86 WHIP)

Preview

Break up the Astros. Houston is currently leading the AL West and on a three-game winning streak. On top of that the Astros have Collin McHugh on the mound tonight. McHugh made his Astros debut at Safeco Field 364 days ago. The right-hander dominated in the outing, pitching 6 2/3 scoreless innings and striking out 12.

In the month of April for his career, McHugh has 4-0 record with a 1.00 ERA in 27 IP. At Safeco Field, he has a career 0.61 ERA in two starts (14.2 IP). in  In five career starts against the Mariners, he is 3-2 with a 4.11 ERA.

SEATTLE MARINERS CAREER STATISTICS VS. COLLIN MCHUGH
BATTER AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO AVG OBP SLG OPS
6 3 1 0 0 2 0 1 0.500 0.500 0.667 1.167
15 3 0 1 0 2 0 4 0.200 0.200 0.333 0.533
3 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.667 0.667 0.667 1.333
10 2 0 0 1 2 0 6 0.200 0.200 0.500 0.700
3 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 0.333 0.333 0.333 0.667
6 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 0.167 0.167 0.167 0.333
9 1 0 0 1 1 0 2 0.111 0.111 0.444 0.556
5 1 0 0 1 1 3 0 0.200 0.500 0.800 1.300
4 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0.250 0.250 0.500 0.750
10 0 0 0 0 0 1 6 0.000 0.091 0.000 0.091
2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000
13 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000

The Astros bullpen has been everything that Astros general manager could have asked for. Through 13 games, the Astros bullpen has the third-best ERA in the majors (2.06). They are also tied for fourth-most strikeouts by bullpen, 49, that includes not having the services of fireballer Josh Fields.

Houston offense has found a way to work around the 3-4-5 hitters in the lineup and still put runs. The heart of the Astros lineup is batting .150 (22-147) with 54 thus far in 2015. Luis Valbuena has slide into the two-hole, and is batting .500 in those two games with a three home runs. Jake Marisnick is batting .313 (5-16) in the nine-hole.

One thing is going to have to give with Taijuan Walker. He has been terrible to start the 2015 season, but he has been historically excellent against the Astros. After posting a 0.67 ERA in 27 IP this spring, Walker has fallen on his face in the regular season.  The young fireballer has given up 14 runs in his 7 1/3 innings pitched. Against the Astros in his career, he is 3-0 with a 2.91 ERA. This includes is first major league start on August 30, 2013. One trend will continue tonight; for the Astros' sake, let's hope Walker doesn't right the ship.

HOUSTON ASTROS CAREER STATISTICS VS. TAIJUAN WALKER
BATTER AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO AVG OBP SLG OPS
10 5 2 0 0 0 0 0 0.500 0.545 0.700 1.245
7 2 0 0 1 1 0 0 0.286 0.286 0.714 1.000
9 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 0.111 0.200 0.111 0.311
5 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0.200 0.333 0.200 0.533
4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.250 0.250 0.250 0.500
Jake Marisnick 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.500 0.500 0.500 1.000
3 1 0 0 1 2 0 2 0.333 0.333 1.333 1.667
7 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 0.143 0.143 0.286 0.429
4 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0.000 0.200 0.000 0.200
8 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000

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