Felix Hernandez leads the American League with 219 1/3 innings and 30 starts, and the Seattle Mariners have been trying to come up with a plan to cut him back a bit.
They've found one.
Interim manager Daren Brown and pitching coach Carl Willis have decided to use off-days this week and next to give Felix an extra day between starts. And, because they plan to stay in rotation, the plan will benefit pitchers Jason Vargas and Doug Fister, too.
"“Felix is going to get five more starts, regardless, and we need to protect him where we can,” Brown said.
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The knew schedule has Hernandez next starting Saturday in Anaheim, then Friday, Sept. 17, at Safeco Field against Texas. With another scheduled of day on Sept. 26, the Mariners can keep Felix on an every sixth day rotation into the final two weeks of the season.
What then? Then, Brown suggested, the team might give a spot start to Ryan Rowland-Smith and still give Hernandez an extra day.