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Jake Arrieta will “plead my case” if Gabe Kapler tries to pull him early

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New Phillies starter Jake Arrieta is scheduled to make his 2018 season debut on Sunday when the club wraps up its home opening series against the Marlins. Arrieta inked a three-year, $75 million contract with the Phillies last month. Because he signed so late, he is just a bit behind which is why he’s getting a slightly late start to the regular season.

Manager Gabe Kapler has been a lightning rod for controversy in his first week. One such controversy occurred on Opening Day, when he removed Aaron Nola — the de facto ace of the starting rotation — after just 68 pitches. Nola didn’t try to argue with Kapler to stay in the game longer. Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia asked if Arrieta would be willing to speak up in order to keep himself in the game. Arrieta said, “Yeah, absolutely. If it’s done smartly, for sure. We pitch one out of every five days so if there’s an extra 20 pitches in there that we can give our team then we want to do that. So, yeah, I’m always trying to plead my base.”

Arrieta also said of managers’ quick hooks, “I think a lot of that, you’ve got to use the eye test. If a guy is rolling then you may extend him a little bit longer and if you have high-stress innings, one or multiple, then you kind of reevaluate and go from there. But I think you’ve got to watch the game and see how it unfolds and if you’re cruising then you would obviously like to continue to stay out there, but it’s tough to plead your case if you’re struggling to stay in the game. So it just depends on how the game unfolds and how things progress, but if I’m rolling I intend to be out there for quite a while.”

Last season, Arrieta went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings.

The Mariners turned an odd triple play with the help of Evan Gattis

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Astros DH Evan Gattis unwittingly helped the Mariners complete a triple play in the fourth inning of Thursday afternoon’s game at Safeco Field. The Astros put runners on first and second on consecutive singles by Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa, bringing Gattis to the plate.

Gattis check-swung at a first-pitch curve from Marco Gonzales, hitting a grounder to third base. Kyle Seager stepped on the third base bag and then threw to second base for the second out. There was not nearly enough time for Robinson Cano to get the throw to first base to complete a triple play. Gattis ostensibly lost track of the number of outs in the inning, so he just circled back to the dugout and the Mariners completed their triple play since Gattis went out of the baseline.

That’s the first triple play of the 2018 season. It’s the Mariners’ first triple play since July 26, 2015 against the Blue Jays.