Houston Astros (50-25) vs. Seattle Mariners (39-37), June 24, 2017, 9:10 p.m. CT
RHP Lance McCullers Jr. (6-1, 2.58 ERA, 1.06 WHIP) vs. RHP Sam Gaviglio (3-1, 3.43 ERA, 1.19 WHIP)
The Houston Astros got one of their biggest weapons back on the mound a day after the Seattle Mariners got back their ace. Lance McCullers is hoping to replicate the output by Felix Hernandez that helped take game one for the M’s.
McCullers returns to the rotation on Saturday after being placed on the 10-Day disabled list with lower back discomfort on June 12. McCullers was the AL Pitcher of the Month in May before the injury with a 4-0 record with a 0.99 ERA and a 0.85 WHIP.
McCullers faces the Mariners for the second time in 2017, he allowed one earned run on five hits over six innings on April 4.
No current Mariners hitter has a home run off McCullers. Robinson Cano is batting .438 (7x16) in his career against McCullers with a double and one RBI. Nelson Cruz is 1-for-10 with seven strikeouts and Kyle Seager is 4-for-14 with a double.
Sam Gaviglio is in his rookie season with the Mariners. The Oregon state product makes his eight career start. He is 3-1 with a 3.38 ERA in his previous seven starts.
He makes his first major league start against the Astros, allowing eight earned runs over his last 21 1/3 innings.
He doesn't hit 90 MPH with his fastball, but it works well against his curveball. Fangraphs notes his curveball has a 2.9 pitch value in his rookie season.