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Paxton, Bridwell get nod for Mariners, Angels

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Seattle Mariners left-hander James Paxton hopes to end the season on a high note for the team and himself on Sunday afternoon.

Paxton (12-5, 3.12 ERA) will take the mound in the season finale against the Los Angeles Angels and attempt to regain the form he had in July, when he became the first Seattle pitcher to win six games in any calendar month.

"I decided that my body feels great and my innings aren't an issue, so I want to run it out there one more time and go get'em," he told the Seattle Times on Friday. "For me, the more innings I can get, the better. It gives me one more start to feel good about where I'm at coming into next season."

Paxton is 0-2 with a 6.97 ERA in three starts since missing five weeks with a strained left pectoral muscle, which occurred in his last start against the Angels on Aug. 10.

He was a different pitcher this summer, posting a 6-0 record and 1.37 ERA in the month of July with 46 strikeouts and six walks, earning AL pitcher of the month honors.

Paxton has made 10 career starts against the Angels, owning a 4-2 mark with a 2.26 ERA.

He started his month of July by allowing one earned run and two hits in 6 1/3 innings of a 5-3 victory in Anaheim. He walked a season-high five batters against the Angels on May 2 and didn't receive a decision in the 6-4 loss.

In his last start against the Angels, he allowed three runs and five hits before leaving with one out in the seventh with the pectoral injury. C.J. Cron and Andrelton Simmons homered off Paxton in that game, but he did not receive the decision in the 6-3 loss.

Seattle manager Scott Servais said he and Paxton talked about Sunday's start before making the decision.

"He just wants to go out there one more time and finish off the season," Servais said. "I certainly respect him and want him to feel good about going out there."

The Angels have been very successful when Parker Bridwell (9-3, 3.87) is the starting pitcher. They're 17-3 in games pitched by Bridwell and 2-1 against Seattle.

Bridwell gave up five runs and a season-high 11 hits in in six innings of a 10-0 loss to the Mariners on June 30, but was solid in his other two outings and is 1-1 overall with a 4.00 ERA against Seattle this season.

Bridwell began the season in Triple-A, but has become one of the most reliable pitchers for Los Angeles.

"Parker has enough stuff that he's not a fluke," Angels manager Mike Scioscia told the Long Beach Press-Telegram. "He's not one-dimensional. He's not doing (just) one thing and the league hasn't caught up to him. He's got a lot of things he does with the baseball."

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