Mariners welcome Sox to Seattle

Mariners welcome Sox to Seattle

It's hard to believe that a team that lost 11 straight games last week can come back and beat the Yankees in two out of three games. But so it goes for the Mariners. Through all the ups and downs, though, the club continues to insist that it's getting better.

"We're a better ballclub today than we were a year ago," said a relective Mike Hargrove on Thursday night. "We've really gotten better all year and it shows."

Friday, the evolution of the club will continue as Jake Woods will get his second start of his career in the place of Joel Pineiro.

Woods has impressed throughout the year and his first start was no different. In 5 2/3 innings, the lefty held the Angels to one run and five hits. He left the game with a 2-0 lead, but the bullpen was unable to hold it. So far against the Red Sox this season, Woods has thrown 4 1/3 shutout innings in relief.

Opposing Woods will be powerful veteran Curt Schilling. Although he hasn't won a game since Aug. 4, he pitched at least seven innings in each start and twice allowed three or fewer runs.

Pitching matchup
SEA: LHP Jake Woods (3-1, 3.88 ERA)
Woods will get his second crack at being a starter in the Majors on Friday. His first one went well as he allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings before leaving with the lead against his former team, the Angels. In three relief appearances against the Red Sox, Woods is 0-1 with a 4.15 ERA in his career.

BOS: RHP Curt Schilling (14-5, 3.84 ERA)
Schilling will become the third pitcher in as many games against the Mariners who attempts to earn his 15th win of the season. So far, one was successful, while the other was not. Despite pretty good numbers in each of his last three starts, Schilling hasn't recorded a win in any of them.

Player to watch
Richie Sexson is 7-for-18 against Schilling with three doubles, a home run and three RBIs. On Thursday, Sexson put a jolt into a Randy Johnson offering for a two-run double. Despite the Seattle first baseman's low batting average, he still has 28 home runs and 87 RBIs on the season.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television

On radio
• KOMO 1000-AM, KTFH 1680-AM (Español)

Up next
• Saturday: Red Sox (LHP David Wells, 2-3, 5.40) at Mariners (RHP Gil Meche, 9-8, 4.66), 7:05 p.m. PT
• Sunday: Red Sox (RHP Kyle Snyder, 3-2, 6.23) at Mariners (RHP Cha Seung Baek, 0-0, 5.40), 1:05 p.m. PT
• Monday: Off-day

C.J. Bowles is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.