Brandon Morrow will make the first start of his career at Safeco Field as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday, and he had fun Monday when asked about his memories of pitching for the Seattle Mariners.
“My memories here? I had a 3-2 count on every hitter I ever faced,” he said, laughing.
Morrow was traded in December 2009 for reliever Brandon League in a deal that seems to have worked out for both teams. After being the Mariners’ setup man last season, League has been their closer in 2011 and has recorded 30 saves.
And Morrow? A year ago in 26 starts, he went 10-7 for the Blue Jays and this season is 8-7 with a 4.55 earned run average in 21 starts.
“Some of those numbers don’t look so hot, but if you look at the nerd stats, I’m having a pretty good year,” Morrow said. “I’m not always sure how they come to those conclusions, but I like them.”
Those are things like WAR (Wins Against Replacement pitcher), in which Morrow has a 3.1 mark; WHIP (walks/hits allowed in innings pitched), 1.263; and BAbip (Batting Average for balls in play), .301.
“I’d rather look at the nerd stats,” Morrow said.
Since leaving the Mariners, Morrow, 27, has married and he and his wife now live in Arizona during offseasons with a new dog. Life is good, with the occasional blip on the mound.
Last Friday, Morrow was pitching against the Angels in Toronto when former Blue Jays slugger Vernon Wells came to the plate and got a standing ovation from the crowd.
“He stepped out, tipped his cap, and when he got back in I threw him the single worst slider of my career,” Morrow said.
“The only good thing was the crowd cheered him all the way around the bases,” Morrow said.
Morrow said he has only good memories of his time with the Mariners and pitching in Safeco Field.
Adam Kennedy has played only once in the first four games of the homestand, sidelined by an ailing heel injured last week in Texas.
“He’d go out there in a second if I put him in a game,” manager Eric Wedge said, “but we owe to him to give him the time to let it get better.”
Expect Kennedy to miss the next two games, enjoy a team day off on Thursday and be ready for the Tampa Bay series in Florida that begins Friday.
Center fielder Franklin Gutierrez lined a first-inning double and extended his hitting streak to eight games. … After his two homers Monday, rookie Mike Carp has 26 RBI in his first 24 games since being recalled from Tacoma on July 19 – one of the highest totals in the majors in that span. The leader? Arizona’s Justin Upton with 29. … Add Carp: The Mariners rookie record for RBI in August is 20, by Carlos Guillen in 2001. Carp now has 17 August RBI.
Seattle hosts Toronto in a 7:10 p.m. game today that will be televised on Root Sports. Probable starting pitchers are Brad Mills (1-2, 6.46 ERA) vs. Jason Vargas (7-10, 4.01).