Dunn debuts as Mariners seek sweep of Reds

Field Level Media

If Kyle Lewis is any indication, the Seattle Mariners' rebuilding plan is on the right track.

Lewis broke up a no-hit bid with a home run in each of his first two major-league games, including a three-run, seventh-inning blast off Cincinnati's Sonny Gray on Wednesday as the Mariners won 5-3.

The Mariners will go for a sweep of the three-game interleague series Thursday night.

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"Quite a start to his major-league career," Mariners manager Scott Servais said of Lewis, Seattle's first-round pick in 2016 after he won the Golden Spikes Award as the top collegiate player at Mercer University. "We are kind of putting him up against it. We don't get a hit until he comes up the second or third time in games.

"You see the kind of ability this guy has, the way the ball jumps off his bat. There's been a few guys here with that kind of power. The ball was in the air forever. It had great carry on it. He's a really talented young guy and it's going to be fun to see how it plays out for his next years here at T-Mobile Park."

Another part of Seattle's rebuilding effort, right-hander Justin Dunn, is scheduled to make his major-league debut Thursday against the Reds.

Dunn, 23, acquired last offseason in that trade that sent Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz to the New York Mets, was 9-5 with a 3.55 ERA in 25 starts for Double-A Arkansas this season, striking out 158 in 131 2/3 innings.

Servais said Dunn will pitch every fifth day in combination with veteran left-hander Tommy Milone. Whether Dunn is used as the opener for Milone or vice versa hasn't been determined.

The plan is for Dunn, the Mets' first-round draft pick in 2016 out of Boston College, to pitch two to three innings in his debut.

"I really still haven't figured out how to put it into words, other than that it's just my childhood dream has come true," Dunn told MLB.com after joining the Mariners on Tuesday. "I'm excited to get out there and finally take the mound."

The Reds plan to send right-hander Tyler Mahle (2-11, 4.94 ERA) to the mound. Mahle, who will be facing the Mariners for the first time, will be seeking his first victory since May 31. He's 0-6 since, including a 7-5 loss to Arizona last Friday in which he allowed five runs on six hits in 4 1/3 innings.

"For Tyler, I think it's important for him to know that it's been a solid year," Reds manager David Bell said. "Nothing is going to change that. For his development, it would be great if he finishes strong. That's important for all of us to finish strong, but he doesn't have to do anything other than exactly what he's done to this point (and) that's pitch well and find ways to keep improving and developing."

Mahle likely will battle for the No. 5 spot in the Reds' rotation next spring.

"I'm using every opportunity I get to start and put some good starts together," Mahle told MLB.com after his last start. "I think if we stay on a five-day (rotation) and I make all my starts, I think I have four more. I want to make the most of it."

--Field Level Media

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