Royals-Mariners Preview

Kansas City has secured its first winning series in Seattle in

almost eight years. It’s been much longer since the Royals swept

the Mariners on their home field.

The Royals look to accomplish the latter for the first time in

15 years Wednesday night at Safeco Field.

Kansas City (38-46) clinched its first winning series at Seattle

since Aug. 30-Sept. 1, 2002, with a 3-2 win Tuesday. The Royals,

who have won nine of 12 overall, are in position for their first

road sweep of the Mariners since 1995.

Wilson Betemit had three hits with three RBIs and Billy Butler

added two hits Tuesday for the Royals, who have won four straight

series and are 4-1 on a nine-game trip.

“This team has been a lot of fun lately,” pitcher Brian

Bannister told the Royals’ official website.

Butler is 9 for 22 in his last eight games and 7 for 16 against

the Mariners (34-49) this season.

Royals outfielder Jose Guillen, who played for the Mariners in

2007, could miss the finale after he pulled up limping after an

eighth inning groundout Tuesday. Guillen leads the team with 14

home runs and 52 RBIs.

Seattle has lost five of six and struggled to get much going

against Zack Greinke on Tuesday. The Mariners, who have scored 10

runs in their last five losses, could be in for another tough time

against scheduled starter Kyle Davies (4-6, 5.64 ERA).

Though Davies has not won since May 28, he is 3-1 with a 3.82

ERA in five starts against Seattle. He allowed one hit in six

scoreless innings of a 3-1 home win over the Mariners on April 26.

Davies gave up two runs in six innings of his only start at Safeco

Field, an 8-4 win Aug. 27.

The right-hander is 0-3 with a 6.89 ERA in his last six starts,

but he was effective Friday, allowing one run in 7 2-3 innings of a

2-1, 10-inning victory over the Los Angeles Angels.

Seattle’s Franklin Gutierrez is 8 for 14 against Davies, but

he’s 0 for 9 in this series and 2 for 17 in his last four games

overall.

Doug Fister (3-4, 3.22 ERA) takes the ball for the Mariners

looking for his first victory since May 14.

The right-hander went 3-1 with a 1.72 ERA in his first seven

starts, but is 0-3 with a 5.46 ERA in his last five. Fister allowed

five runs in 4 2-3 innings of a 7-1 loss at Detroit on Friday in

his second start since missing almost a month with a shoulder

fatigue.

“He’s just not quite feeling his release point,” manager Don

Wakamatsu told the Mariners’ official website. “It’s just getting

him out there pitching again.”

Fister lost his only previous appearance versus Kansas City when

he gave up five runs and three homers in six innings in the August

loss to Davies.