A change of perspective.
The Mariners get their first look Tuesday at first baseman Yonder Alonso as a teammate, and he gets his first look at his former teammates from the opposing dugout at the Oakland Coliseum.
Alonso is expected to be in the lineup when the Mariners open a two-game series against the Athletics at 7:10 p.m. The Mariners acquired him Sunday from Oakland in a trade for outfielder Boog Powell.
Ironically, Powell is returning to the Athletics, and he changed dugouts Monday night at Cheney Stadium to play for Triple-A Nashville against Tacoma. He went 2-for-6 with a walk, but the Rainiers won 8-7 in 12 innings.
Alonso appears to welcome the change in scenery.
"Great bunch of guys that I can’t wait to go to battle with every night…," he said in a twitter post shortly after the trade. "Excited to be there and make this push for the playoffs."
Manager Scott Servais indicated Alonso, a left-handed hitter, will see platoon duty at first base with Danny Valencia, a former Oakland teammate and an off-season workout partner in Miami.
Analytically, the platoon splits make sense.
Alonso, 30, is a left-handed hitter who is batting .286 this season with 18 homers and 40 RBIs in 299 plate appearances against right-handed pitchers but only .188 with four and nine in 72 plate appearances against lefties.
Valencia, 32, is a right-handed hitter who is batting .309 with five homers and 25 RBIs in 109 plate appearances against left-handers. He is batting .258 with eight and 33 in 309 plate appearances against right-handers.
It’s important to note that a strict platoon arrangement — if that’s what this is — means significantly less playing time for Valencia, whose overall performance doesn’t merit such a reduction.
Further, Valencia and Alonso are pending free agents. The reality is this is a salary drive year for both players, and it’s hard to build big numbers in a platoon arrangement, particularly for the right-handed hitter (Valencia).
The Mariners will likely point to Valencia’s versatility because he can play third base or right field. Also left field or second base in a pinch. Even so, it’s uncertain how much playing time will be available at those spots. So we’ll see.
Maybe this goes down without a hitch.
***Lefty Ariel Miranda (7-5 with a 4.41 ERA) seeks to end a five-start winless streak when he faces Oakland right-hander Kendall Graveman (2-3, 4.96) in the series opener. You can see the game on Root Sports Northwest.
***The Mariners had an open date Monday but gained ground in the wild-card race when Kansas City suffered an 11-3 loss to St. Louis. The Mariners (57-56) are one game behind Kansas City (57-54) and Tampa Bay (58-55).
***Graveman is making his second start since returning from a two-month stay on the disabled list because of a strained shoulder. He gave up seven runs in two innings to the Giants on Aug. 3.
***Miranda gave up four runs and seven hits over three innings on April 22 in his only previous start this year against the Athletics. He limited them to one run in 5 1/3 innings last September in his only other career appearance against them.
***Graveman is 1-3 with a 4.82 ERA in eight career games, including six starts, against the Mariners. He has not faced them previously this season.
***No Oakland player has more than four career at-bats against Miranda, but Ryon Healy had a homer and a double in two at-bats in that April 22 game.
***Nelson Cruz is 11-for-17 in his career against Graveman, while Robinson Cano is 6-for-16. But Kyle Seager is just 3-for-16, and Leonys Martin is 1-for-15.
***Cruz leads the American League with 84 RBIs. Baltimore second baseman Jonathan Schoop ranks second with 82. Cano is tied with for sixth with 75.
***Center fielder Jarrod Dyson leads the league with 27 stolen bases. His career high is 36 in 2014.
***Left fielder Khris Davis leads Oakland with 27 homers and 75 RBIs (tied with Cano), but he leads the majors with 148 strikeouts.
It was 20 years ago Tuesday — Aug. 8, 1997 — that Randy Johnson matched a career high by striking out 19 in a 5-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox at the Kingdome. He struck out future Mariner Mike Cameron four times.
Johnson struck out 19 earlier in the season in a 4-1 loss to Oakland on June 24. The 19 strikeouts, at the time, matched an MLB record previously help by Steve Carlton, for the most in a single game by a left-handed pitcher.
Johnson broke the record in 2001 at Arizona when he struck out 20 over nine innings in a no-decision against Cincinnati. That remains the MLB record for a left-hander.
Bob Dutton: @TNT_Mariners