One would have thought that a matchup against the lowly Houston Astros would have been just what Seattle Mariners rookie RHP Brandon Maurer needed to bounce back from a rough outing. In his first start against the Oakland Athletics last week, Maurer allowed six runs in the first six innings pitched of his career.
Maurer showed nerves in the first inning and left a fastball in the middle of the plate against Yoenis Cespedes and he sent it over the fence. The 22-year-old again looked nervous as he made his Safeco Field debut on Tuesday.
Leaving pitches over the middle of the plate continued to be a problem for the young right-hander as he allowed hits to the first three batters he faced before he recorded an out. One the two he was able to get in a very short outing.
Overall, Maurer allowed six earned runs on seven hits in 0.2 of an inning pitched in the Mariners’ loss, ballooning his ERA up to 16.20 through the first two outings of his MLB career.
A short outing like this does not only affect one game, as Maurer forced the bullpen to log more than eight innings, meaning that they will be short-handed on Wednesday when Blake Beavan takes the mound.
Maurer will need to make an adjustment before his next scheduled start against the hard-hitting Texas Rangers on Sunday. He can’t afford to have another poor performance with worthy replacements like Erasmo Ramirez and Jeremy Bonderman waiting in the minor leagues to take his spot.