Mariners notebook: Walker looks to stop the streak

Sep 24, 2014, 3:52 PM | Updated: 4:22 pm
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TORONTO – The loss last night in a Felix Hernandez start was a crushing blow to the Mariners, but there is another game to be played tonight and Seattle still has the slimmest of chances of advancing to the postseason.

If the Mariners go 4-1 and either Kansas City or Oakland go 1-4, there will be a 163rd game and that game would be played in Seattle as the Mariners hold the season advantage over both teams.

It’s all in Taijuan Walker’s hands now and it’s probably best that he doesn’t think of it that way. While it’s impossible to know for sure if the pressure played into the performances of the starters in the last three games, it certainly appeared to.

Felix, for his part, acknowledged that he knew how big a game it was. After the game he apologized to both his skipper and teammates for not coming through. Today he was still a little subdued but did crack a smile when Robinson Cano had what I believe was a colorful exchange in Spanish with Kendrys Morales in warmups and then threw a ball at Felix while he was walking out to the outfield to play catch. A far cry from the animated and loud Felix we usually see before games but a step in the right direction.

He will need to learn from yesterday but put it behind him. There is still the smallest of chances they will need him to be big again this year.

As for Walker, he is aware of the situation and aware that he can’t let emotions get in the way tonight.

“You don’t want to go out there and get too pumped up or try to do something different,” he said in an interview that ran on the pregame show Wednesday. “You have just got to go out there like any other game.”

The game may or may not be his last of the season. Having missed so much time this year, there is a chance the Mariners could ask him to get innings in a winter league this offseason. He hopes to get a few more before he takes off his Mariners uniform, however.

“I want to pitch in October,” he said. “I’m not ready to go home.”

Lineup!

Austin Jackson, 8
Dustin Ackley, 7
Robinson Cano, 4
Kendrys Morales, 3
Kyle Seager, 5
Logan Morrison, 9
Corey Hart, DH
Mike Zunino, 2
Chris Taylor, 6

Taijuan Walker

Notes

• It has not yet been officially announced but Tom Wilhelmsen has been told that he will start tomorrow’s game. Manager Lloyd McClendon told the media that he was deciding between Wilhelmsen and Dominic Leone.

• McClendon said that as of now there are no plans not to start Felix on Sunday. Should the team be out of contention, there is thought that with Felix at 230 innings they could shut him down.

Date Starting Pitcher
Tuesday, September 27 @ 6:40 pm

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