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News » Mariners-White Sox Preview 2009-04-28

Mariners-White Sox Preview 2009-04-28

Mariners-White Sox Preview 2009-04-28
A rainout Monday has created a clash of two of the best young pitchers in the game as the Chicago White Sox and Seattle Mariners play a twilight doubleheader Tuesday at U.S. Cellular Field.

The second game of the twinbill pits Chicago's 24-year-old left-hander John Danks versus Seattle's 23-year-old righty Felix Hernandez.

Danks (2-0, 0.95 ERA) was scheduled to start Monday's series opener, but has no problem waiting until Tuesday night to take the mound.

"It doesn't matter to me one bit," said Danks, 0-3 with a 7.31 ERA in three career starts against Seattle. "It doesn't really change anything. I'll take the ball whenever they give it to me."

And the White Sox (9-9) will gladly keep giving him the ball the way he's been pitching. The lefty has won his last two starts - both on the road - and given up just nine hits in 19 innings overall. In Wednesday's 8-2 win over Baltimore, Danks conceded just one run and four hits in seven innings, but grinded through the last four frames of his 103-pitch outing.

"It's a good game, obviously, on paper, but I didn't have a lot of fun," he said. "After the third, I had 60 pitches and I was hoping just to get through five, maybe to the sixth. The goal is to get deeper in the game and get more efficient. As the game went on, that's what I did."

Hernandez, meanwhile, keeps his spot in the Mariner's rotation following Monday's postponement.

"We felt it was better to keep Felix in the same spot that he was going to pitch in," said Seattle's first-year manager Don Wakamatsu, whose team is 2-1 on its six-game trip.

Hernandez (3.12 ERA) had seven strikeouts and went seven scoreless innings in his last start in beating Tampa Bay 1-0 on Thursday.

"His slider ... ," Seattle catcher Rob Johnson said, "I mean, it was nasty."

Hernandez is 3-0 for the first time in five major league seasons but 0-2 with a 6.60 ERA in three career starts at U.S. Cellular Field. He was reached for five runs and 11 hits in five innings of a 5-0 loss on Aug. 19.

Monday's scheduled starter Chris Jakubauskas will pitch the first game for the AL West-leading Mariners (12-7), while the White Sox moved up Bartolo Colon from his spot in the rotation.

Jakubauskas (1-2, 7.11 ERA) makes his first career start against the White Sox. The 30-year-old rookie hopes his third career start will be an improvement from his last time out when he yielded six runs and 10 hits in just 3 1-3 innings as Seattle lost 9-3 to Tampa Bay on Wednesday.

"It was very disheartening tonight," Jakubauskas told the Mariners' official Web site. "I wanted to give another good performance and it didn't happen. It was one of those days, I guess. You don't like to have them."

Colon (1-1, 6.14 ERA) would also like to avoid a repeat from his last start. Last time out, the right-hander allowed five runs and eight hits in three innings in Thursday's 6-2 loss at Baltimore. It was his shortest start since July 23, 2007.

"He was not throwing strikes," Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen said. "The ball was not moving."

Since returning from the disabled list April 15, Ichiro Suzuki has hit safely in nine of 11 games while batting .333. He is batting .313 (21-for-67) with three homers lifetime against Colon, but has just one hit in eight career at-bats versus Danks.

Ken Griffey Jr. was not in Monday's lineup, but Wakamatsu said the 39-year-old designated hitter will play in one game of the doubleheader. Griffey, who is batting .192 with two homers this season, had three home runs with 18 RBIs in 41 games in helping the White Sox win the AL Central last year.

"Those were two of the best months of my career," Griffey told the Mariners' official Web site. "Everything about it was good."

He has never faced Danks, but he is 6-for-21 lifetime against Colon with a pair of home runs.

Brian Anderson, who is batting a team-best .349, went 7-for-11 (.636) as the White Sox dropped two of three to Toronto to open their six-game homestand. Anderson has two hits in five career at-bats against Hernandez - both home runs.

Paul Konerko batted .389 (7-for-18) in five games versus Seattle in 2008.

Chicago has won 18 of 24 at home against the Mariners.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: April 28, 2009

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