Hot-hitting Kyle Tucker will be looking to extend his 12-game hitting streak as the Houston Astros (49-38) host the Seattle Mariners (42-43) at Minute Maid Park on Thursday for the first of a four-game series.
The Mariners are in the midst of a seven-game road trip. They won two out of three in their last series against the Giants, dropping the finale 2-0 on Wednesday at Oracle Park. Cal Raleigh was 2 for 3 with a double.
The Astros are in the midst of a six-game homestand. They are coming off a two-game sweep of the Rockies, taking the finale 6-4 on Wednesday at Minute Maid Park for their fourth straight win. Yainer Diaz went 2 for 4 with two home runs and three RBIs. Jeremy Pena added a home run and two RBIs.
The Mariners have won two of three in the season series between the AL West rivals, including a 3-1 victory in their most recent meeting on May 7 at T-Mobile Park. Bryce Miller threw six scoreless innings to get the win, and Justin Topa earned his first save of the season with a scoreless ninth.
ON THE MOUND
George Kirby (7-7, 3.21 ERA) is set to start for Seattle. The RHP allowed two runs over seven innings in his last start, an 8-3 road win over the Rays on Saturday. He was credited with the win, yielding two hits while striking out seven and walking two.
Kirby is making his first appearance against the Astros this season. Kirby made one start against the Astros in 2022, a 3-2 road loss on July 31. He surrendered two runs on four hits over four innings, striking out seven and walking one.
AT THE PLATE
The Seattle offense is averaging 4.5 runs per game for the season, with a slash line of .233/.311/.391. Jarred Kelenic leads the team in OPS at .761. The center fielder is slashing .247/.319/.442 with 11 home runs, 38 RBIs, and 37 runs over 80 games.
Houston is slashing .251/.321/.414 for the season and averaging 4.7 runs per game. Tucker leads the team with a .845 OPS. The left fielder has 13 home runs, 55 RBIs, and 45 runs scored with a slash line of .293/.366/.479.
Houston is averaging 5.8 runs per game in the last five with an improved slash line (.291/.354/.529). The ‘Stros have a .727 OPS against righties in 2023. With a .801 OPS over 242 at-bats, Alex Bregman has been their best hitter against right-handers.
HOME AND AWAY
Seattle is 18-23 on the road in 2023, scoring 4.5 runs per game while allowing 4.5 runs. Houston has won four in a row at Minute Maid Park. The ‘Stros are 24-19 at home this season, averaging 4.4 runs per game while surrendering 4.1. Houston is 7-3 in the last 10 games at Minute Maid Park between the teams with an average scoreline of 5.2-3.5.
The Mariners are fourth in the AL West, eight games behind the division-leading Rangers. The Astros are second in the AL West, two games behind the Rangers.
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