Kikuchi (5-8) picked up the win after allowing two hits and a walk while striking out eight over nine scoreless innings Sunday against the Blue Jays.
Kikuchi gave up a double in the third inning and a single to left in the fourth, but he kept the Blue Jays off the board in the series finale. He needed just 96 pitches (65 strikes) to fire the complete game. The 28-year-old lefty was hit hard in his last outing, surrendering five runs on nine hits and a walk over just 3.1 innings of work, but he brought his best stuff to the ballpark Sunday afternoon. Kikuchi owns a 5.19 ERA and 1.44 WHIP with a 103:43 K:BB over 135.1 innings this season.
Kikuchi, who is scheduled to make his next start Sunday against the Blue Jays, could be temporarily dropped from the rotation the following week for rest purposes, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
When the Mariners signed Kikuchi this offseason, the team's initial plans called for limiting the southpaw to an abbreviated outing around every 5-to-6 turns through the rotation in an effort to mimic his rest schedule from his time his Japan. Seattle hasn't been as committed to that plan in the second half, but with an off day next week and Felix Hernandez (lat) on track to rejoin the rotation, there should be an opportunity for Kikuchi to receive some maintenance. Along with Hernandez's impending return from the 60-day injured list, prospect Justus Sheffield is expected to be called up from Double-A Arkansas and receive some starts down the stretch. Those two arrivals could result in the Mariners rolling out a six-man rotation for the remainder of the season, which would afford Kikuchi an extra day of rest between his future outings.
Kikuchi gave up five runs on nine hits and one walk over 3.1 innings during Tuesday's 11-6 win at Detroit. He struck out three and did not factor in the decision.
Kikuchi fell apart during the fourth inning and was charged with four runs on five hits, including a pair of homers. The 28-year-old has largely struggled during his first season in the majors with a 5.56 ERA, 1.52 WHIP and 95:42 K:BB over 126.1 innings, and he is set to pitch at Toronto on Sunday.
Kikuchi gave up one run on four hits and three walks across five innings during Wednesday's 3-2 win over the Padres. He struck out eight but did not factor in the decision.
Kikuchi served up a leadoff homer to Fernando Tatis to start the game, but he didn't allow another extra-base hit in the outing. The 28-year-old exited in line for the victory, but the bullpen promptly allowed a solo homer in the sixth to tie the game. Kikuchi has a 5.34 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and 92:41 K:BB over 123 innings and should pitch next week at Detroit.
Kikuchi could see his innings limited down the stretch if the Mariners opt to expand their starting rotation to six pitchers, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports. "It's just a different schedule here than Japan, having to pitch more frequently and maybe a little more stressful innings," manager Scott Servais said. "We have to be patient with this. We said from Day 1 it's a developmental year for him. There have been some good signs and some outings that haven't been as good. He will learn from it."
The team had planned to be particularly watchful of Kikuchi's innings in his first season stateside, and a plan to limit him to just a one-inning start approximately once a month had even been initially put in place to help in that regard. However, Servais has ultimately only deployed that strategy twice, and the Japanese southpaw is on pace for approximately 169 frames, which was more or less his target range. Prospects Justus Sheffield and Justin Dunn are two possibilities for a sixth starter role if it is indeed implemented.
Kikuchi (4-8) allowed six runs on nine hits and struck out only one in four innings, taking the loss Friday against the Astros.
Kikuchi was done in by the long ball Friday, as all six runs were scored on four of the Astros' six homers in the game. Kikuchi has struggled recently, with five of his last 10 starts seeing the southpaw surrender five or more runs. He owns a 5.49 ERA and 1.48 WHIP with 84 strikeouts in 118 innings this season. Kikuchi is expected to take his next turn versus the Padres on Wednesday.
Kikuchi pitched 6.2 innings Friday, allowing two runs on seven hits while striking out four. He took a no-decision in a 3-2 win over the Tigers.
Kikuchi had a rough beginning, allowing solo home runs to Brandon Dixon and John Hicks early on, but he settled down well enough to keep his team in a position to win. The 28-year-old has allowed three runs or less in four of his last six starts. For the year, Kikuchi has a 5.21 ERA and 1.46 WHIP with 83 strikeouts over 114 innings. The southpaw lines up for a tough road date with the Astros next Friday.
Kikuchi (4-7) allowed seven runs on nine hits and one walk across five innings while taking the loss Sunday against the Angels. He struck out three.
After a solo home run from Albert Pujols in the second inning, Kikuchi allowed four runs on five hits in the fourth, though three of those were of the infield variety. He allowed two more runs before completing the fifth and was done for the day. After showing signs of regaining his prior form, Kikuchi has taken another step back over his last two outings, allowing 10 earned runs in nine innings during that span. He'll take a disappointing 5.37 ERA into his next start at home Friday against the Tigers.
Kikuchi allowed three runs on two hits and four walks across four innings in a no-decision Sunday against the Angels. He struck out three.
It was a strange start for Kikuchi, who pitched well over his first four innings aside from a solo home run off the bat of Kole Calhoun. Unfortunately, he allowed the first two hitters to reach before his removal in the fifth and watched as the bullpen allowed both to score. This lackluster outing is a bit discouraging after Kikuchi turned in a stellar performance in his previous start. He will look to get back on track in his next start at home against this same Angels team.
Kikuchi (4-6) pitched seven innings in a loss Friday, allowing three runs (two earned) on four hits and a walk. He struck out five in the 5-2 loss to the Athletics.
Kikuchi has had a roller-coaster season, but this was one of the better outings for the southpaw despite the end result. It was the 28-year-old's longest outing since May 8, when he tossed 7.2 innings versus the Yankees. Kikuchi owns a 4.94 ERA and a 1.45 WHIP in 98.1 innings. He lines up to start against the Athletics again July 16.
Kikuchi (personal) is still awaiting the birth of his first child, but he remains on track to make his next start Friday against the Athletics, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports.
Kikuchi headed home Sunday with his wife's delivery imminent, and although the situation is essentially the epitome of "day-to-day," the expectation for the time being is that the left-hander will make his next start. Kikuchi has taken his fair share of lumps during his first season stateside, as evidenced by his 5.12 ERA and 1.51 WHIP.
Kikuchi left the Mariners on Sunday due to his wife being in labor with the couple's child, Shannon Drayer of 710 ESPN Seattle reports.
Seattle hasn't formally placed Kikuchi on the paternity list, though the team could make the transaction once the baby is born. Regardless of whether a transaction is made or not, Kikuchi is expected to rejoin the Mariners in time for his next scheduled start, which would fall either Thursday against the Cardinals or Friday against the Athletics.
Kikuchi didn't factor into the decision in Saturday's 6-5 extra-inning loss to the Astros, giving up five runs (three earned) on six hits and three walks over five innings while striking out five.
A Dee Gordon error cushioned the blow to his ERA, but this was still another less-than-effective outing for Kikuchi. The lefty walked multiple batters for the sixth straight start and got tagged for at least three earned runs for the sixth time in his last seven, although on the bright side, he didn't serve up a homer for the first time since May 19. Kikuchi will take a 5.12 ERA and 68:32 K:BB through 91.1 innings into his next start Friday, at home against the A's.
Kikuchi (4-5) allowed three runs on five hits and five walks across six innings to earn the win Sunday against the Orioles. He struck out three.
Kikuchi uncharacteristically failed to throw strikes for much of the day as he set a new career high in walks. He allowed a run in the first, second and sixth inning while battling to mitigate further damage. On a positive note, Kikuchi turned in a quality start and earned his first win in over a month, but he didn't look overly convincing in light of his recent struggles. He will face a difficult matchup in his next start on the road against Houston.
Kikuchi (3-5) took the loss against Kansas City on Tuesday, pitching five innings and allowing six runs on nine hits and two walks while striking out five.
After a strong outing in his previous start against Minnesota, Kikuchi's struggles returned against the Royals. He was in trouble from the get-go, allowing a pair of runs on three hits before recording his first out. By the time he departed, the Japanese lefty allowed six earned runs for the third time this season -- all of which have come in his last four starts. Kikuchi will try to turn things around Sunday when he faces Baltimore at home in his next scheduled start.
Kikuchi allowed one earned run on six hits and two walks while striking out four across five innings Thursday against the Twins. He did not factor into the decision.
Kikuchi worked out of jams regularly as he allowed multiple baserunners in four of the five innings he pitched but managed to allow just one run to cross the plate. His best work came after he loaded the bases in the second frame, as he struck out two batters prior to forcing a groundout to escape the inning without surrendering a run. While the performance wasn't overwhelmingly strong, it was a big improvement from his past three outings, across which he allowed 16 earned runs in 10 innings. He'll look to maintain the improvement in his next start, currently scheduled for Tuesday against Kansas City.
Kikuchi (3-4) allowed seven runs -- six earned -- on nine hits and three walks over 3.1 innings. He took the loss and struck out only one batter.
Kikuchi's previous start was skipped, but the extra time off did not seem to help the 27-year-old. He's lasted only 3.1 innings in each of his last three starts, surrendering 29 hits and 18 runs (16 earned) over that span. His ERA ballooned to 4.99 with 51 strikeouts over 70.1 innings. Kikuchi is scheduled to face the Athletics on Friday in his next start.
Kikuchi will start Saturday against the Angels, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
Kikuchi will rejoin the rotation over the weekend after having his previous start skipped for maintenance purposes. The southpaw owns a 4.43 ERA, 1.31 WHIP and 50:17 K:BB in 67 innings (13 starts) this season.
Kikuchi will have his next start skipped, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports.
The Mariners' plan heading into the season was to limit some of Kikuchi's starts to one inning in order to keep his workload light. They'll change plans slightly this time around, skipping him entirely. It certainly seems like a good time to give him a break, as he's given up 11 runs on 20 hits in just 6.2 innings over his last two starts. The Mariners have not announced his replacement in the rotation.
Kikuchi could be limited to one inning in his next scheduled start, and it's possible he could simply skip his next outing completely, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports.
Skipper Scott Servais will meet with Kikuchi on Saturday to discuss the matter, and considering the southpaw's struggles of late, now seems like a good time to give Kikuchi a breather. He's been rocked for 11 runs (10 earned) over his last two starts, lasting just 3.1 innings in each.
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