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May 8, 2024 8:11 am

Mariners look to George Kirby to power another win over Twins

george kirby

Seattle Mariners right-hander George Kirby lasted 88 pitches before walking off the mound with his pitching coach and his manager last Friday.

Five days later, Kirby’s sore right knee appears to be feeling better. He will try to turn in a more complete performance when he faces the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday in the third contest of a four-game road series.

“I’ve been able to pitch through it and been getting good treatment,” Kirby said.

The Mariners’ 26-year-old is 3-2 with a 3.76 ERA in seven starts this season. He has walked four batters and struck out 41 in 38 1/3 innings.

In two career starts against the Twins, Kirby is 1-0 with a 4.09 ERA. He has walked one batter and struck out 19 in 11 innings.

The Twins are looking to bounce back from a 10-6 loss on Tuesday night. They rallied to even the score at 6-6 in the eighth inning, but the Mariners pulled back in front with four runs in the top of the ninth and held on to win.

“We’ve been kind of waiting for this game to come,” manager Scott Servais said. “At some point, you’re going to have to find a way to score a bunch of runs to pick up your pitching, and we did that tonight.”

It marked the second loss in the past three games for Minnesota. Before those games, the Twins had won 12 in a row.

“We didn’t play the kind of baseball we’ve been playing,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “We didn’t play a complete game. We played pieces of a game. We continued to battle throughout the game, but we gave up eight runs in the last (three) innings. … It’s just a combination (of things). That’s not going to work.

“We need to just squash whatever happened in the last two, three innings of this game and move on and play some more good baseball. We made some mistakes that we don’t want to make, and we’ll clean that up. We’ll be OK with that.”

Minnesota right-hander Chris Paddack (3-1, 4.78) is scheduled to take the mound for his seventh start of the season. He has won each of his past three decisions.

In his most recent start, Paddack delivered a sterling performance with six scoreless innings against the Boston Red Sox. He limited the Red Sox to two hits and one walk, and he struck out six.

“It’s fun out there when all of your pitches are working and you’re able to save (the changeup),” Paddack, 28, said after the start.

Paddack has faced the Mariners four times in his career. He is 3-1 with a 2.63 ERA in those games, with the most recent outing taking place in 2021.

Seattle likely will make at least one roster move before the start of Wednesday’s game. Left-handed reliever Tayler Saucedo injured his right leg Tuesday when he stepped awkwardly on first base while trying to cover the bag on an infield hit.

Saucedo, 30, writhed in pain in the dirt as Max Kepler scored the tying run. Saucedo immediately left the game and was replaced by reliever Ryne Stanek, who recorded two outs and earned his first victory of the season.

In 14 relief appearances this season, Saucedo is 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA. Servais said the pitcher injured his knee and added that he would be “out for a little while.”

–Field Level Media

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