The Seattle Mariners are trying hard to avoid any chance of a potential one-game playoff.
They’ll look to continue their push toward a spot in the postseason when they play the middle game of their weekend series with the defending World Series champion Anaheim Angels at Safeco Field.
The Mariners won the coin flip against Boston and Oakland on Thursday, which means they would have home-field advantage, should it come down to it, for a potential one-game playoff.
“Obviously, we’d like to get it done before that, but it’s great if it comes down to it,” Mariners manager Bob Melvin said.
Seattle took the opener 7-4 on Friday, remaining 1 1/2 games behind Boston in the AL wild-card race and 2 1/2 in back of the A’s for the AL West lead.
The Mariners, who won their third in a row overall, will send Freddy Garcia to the mound on Saturday.
The right-hander is 2-0 with a 1.84 ERA in two starts against Anaheim this year. In 14 career starts against the Angels, he is 9-2 with a 2.66 ERA. The nine wins are his most against any opponent.
The Angels will counter with Aaron Sele, who pitched for the Mariners from 2000-01. The right-hander is 0-2 with 6.30 ERA in two starts against his former team this season.
Anaheim has lost eight of 11.
After going 18-9 last season in September and October during their run to the World Series title, the Angels are 4-7 so far this month.
STANDINGS: Angels - 3rd place, 18 GB, AL West. Mariners - 2nd place, 2 1/2 GB, AL West.
ANGELS PROBABLE STARTER: Sele (7-10, 5.70 ERA). Sele is 1-4 over his last 10 starts despite allowing three runs or fewer seven times. The 33-year-old right-hander didn’t receive a decision in the Angels’ 3-1 win at Oakland on Monday, giving up one run and four hits while walking three over five innings. In 13 career starts against the Mariners, he is 3-6 with a 5.80 ERA.
MARINERS PROBABLE STARTER: Garcia (11-14, 4.96 ERA). The Mariners have lost Garcia’s last four starts, with the right-hander going 0-2 over that stretch. The 27-year-old right-hander lost 2-1 at Baltimore on Sunday despite giving up one run and four hits over seven innings. He also struck out seven as he remained winless since beating Boston on Aug. 17. Garcia is 5-7 with a 4.53 ERA at home this season.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Angels - Garret Anderson, .314 avg., 29 HRs and 114 RBIs; Tim Salmon, 72 runs; Adam Kennedy, 21 SBs. Mariners - Ichiro Suzuki, .313 avg., 105 runs and 31 SBs; Bret Boone, 33 HRs and 108 RBIs.
SEASON SERIES: Mariners, 9-5.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Angels - Anaheim’s bullpen leads the AL with a 2.96 ERA. The starters, however, rank 10th with a 4.97 ERA. … RHP Sele is 4-6 with a 6.58 ERA on the road … The Angels are 21-34 since the All-Star break. They held first place in the AL West for only four days this season and were in second for 10 days. Mariners - SS Rey Sanchez, who has missed two games with a pulled left hamstring, was given another day to rest Friday. … RF Suzuki has hit safely in 64 of his last 80 games. … RHP Garcia has a 4.53 ERA at Safeco this season, compared to a 5.40 ERA on the road.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Angels - 30-45 on the road; Mariners - 46-30 at home.
INJURIES: Angels - 3B Troy Glaus (shoulder), 15-day DL; OF Darin Erstad (hamstring), 15-day DL; RHP Matt Wise (elbow), 60-day DL; C Bengie Molina (wrist), 60-day DL; INF Brad Fullmer (knee), 60-day DL. Mariners - INF Greg Colbrunn (wrist), 15-day DL; RHP Rett Johnson (shoulder), 15-day DL; LHP Matt Thornton (elbow), 60-day DL.