06/09/10 1:36 AM ET
Snell, Wilson both seek consistency
By Doug Miller / MLB.com
For Seattle, it'll be Ian Snell on the hill, and he will be looking to harness his stuff into a consistent performance, something that's eluded him at times this year. Snell began the season in the starting rotation, was demoted to the bullpen, and is now back among Seattle's five-man rotation.
In Snell's last start, he showed some progress, giving up four runs (three earned) on three hits in 5 1/3 innings, but he took the loss. The Mariners still believe Snell has the tools to be a very good Major League starter, and they know in which areas the right-hander must improve.
"He needs to be down in the zone better," Mariners pitching coach Rick Adair said. "We have done a couple of things with him between starts for his focus and in terms of being down. ... No mechanical, all mental. He has really good stuff. He really does. It comes to the point in games where he needs to trust what he does."
For the lefty C.J. Wilson, the former Rangers closer who earned a spot in the starting rotation during Spring Training, it's been a tale of two seasons.
Wilson started out hot, going 3-1 with a 1.48 ERA in his first seven starts, but since then, in his last four outings, he's 1-2 with an 8.57 ERA. It hasn't helped that the Rangers are only scoring four runs per game for him, the 14th-lowest run-support average in the American League.
Wilson earned his first victory since May 7 in his most recent start, however, when he went five innings and gave up five runs (three earned) while walking four and striking out five against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Wilson's brief comment regarding that start could speak to the sum of his 2010 season so far.
"Mechanically," Wilson said, "I was off and on all night."
Mariners: Ichiro a multi-tasker
Right fielder Ichiro leads the Majors with 29 multi-hit games and 20 infield hits, and he is batting .388 (45-for-116) over his past 29 games. Of all players since 1901 that have recorded at least 1,000 career hits, Ichiro ranks No. 1 with an average of 1.42 hits per game. Since making his debut in 2001, Ichiro has recorded 2,112 hits in 1,484 games. Ty Cobb (1.38 per game, 4,191 hits in 3,033 games) ranks second. ... On Monday night, Mariners lefty Cliff Lee became just the third Mariner to throw a complete game at Rangers Ballpark (1994-current). He joined John Halama (July 4, 1999) and Randy Johnson (July 5, 1998) as the only Mariners to go the distance at Rangers Ballpark since in opened in 1994.
Rangers: Young a serious hit man
Third baseman Michael Young enters Wednesday's game with 1,737 career hits, 10 short of matching Ivan Rodriguez's 1,747 for the franchise record. Meanwhile, Young and Ichiro continue to lead the Majors in hits since the beginning of the 2003 season. Ichiro has 1,662 since then, and Young has 1,491. ... Wilson has one start against the Mariners this year, a no-decision on May 2 at Safeco Field in which he gave up one run on five hits in seven innings. Texas won the game in 11 innings.
The Mariners have lost 14 games in their opponents' final at-bat, including eight walk-off losses. ... The Mariners signed right-handed pitcher Scott Patterson to a Minor League contract. ... Rangers righty Dustin Nippert has recorded at least one strikeout in 17 consecutive relief appearances, the second-longest single-season streak in club history. Wayne Rosenthal (July 19-Sept. 15, 1991) has the top spot with 23. ... Despite pitching just 16 innings over the team's last seven games, the Texas bullpen still ranks second in the AL in relief innings this season. The Rangers have used relievers an AL-high 173 times in 2010.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.