The 3-2 pitch

Three observations …

Seattle entered the weekend a stunning 20 games over .500. And the Mariners are doing it with Dee Gordon injured, Robinson Cano suspended, third baseman Kyle Seager batting 35 points below his career average and righthander Felix Hernandez carrying a 5.70 ERA. Good teams improvise and overcome.

What's impressive about Washington's 19-year-old rookie outfielder Juan Soto is that he has struck out only 11 times over his first 76 plate appearances while walking 12 times. The Nationals have a keeper there.

Eyebrows were raised when the Cubs signed righthander Tyler Chatwood — with a career 40-46 record and 4.31 ERA — to a three-year, $38 million deal during the offseason. Eyebrows should be raised now that he leads the league with 58 walks issued.

… and two predictions

The Twins will hold J.D. Martinez without a homer when the Red Sox visit for a three-game series starting on Tuesday, but Mookie Betts will homer twice.

The Angels won't make the playoffs. They have 10 players on the DL and not enough resources to make deals to fill holes.