(SportsNetwork.com) - Roenis Elias will make his season debut on Sunday when the Seattle Mariners play the rubber match of a three-game series with the Minnesota Twins at Safeco Field.
Elias, who is stepping in for an injured Hisashi Iwakuma, made 29 starts for the Mariners last season and went 10-12 with a 3.85 ERA. He went 0-2 with an 8.71 ERA in two starts against Minnesota.
The 26-year-old Elias was 2-0 with a 8.04 ERA and 1.79 WHIP through three starts for Triple-A Tacoma. He also struck out 12 and walked seven in 15 2/3 innings.
Getting the call for the Twins on Sunday will be promising right-hander Kyle Gibson, who has lost two of his three starts and is pitching to a 5.87 ERA. Gibson absorbed the loss on Monday in Kansas City, as he allowed four runs (3 earned) and four hits with four walks in five innings.
"Gibby didn't have his best command," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "He was struggling with his off-speed pitches particularly. Last time out, he had a good slider and changeup."
The Twins have scored just one run in each of his two losses, but he hasn't helped himself any either, yielding nine earned runs in the setbacks.
Gibson has faced the Mariners three times and is 2-1 against them with a 3.00 ERA.
Minnesota evened this series at a game apiece on Saturday, as Eduardo Escobar homered and Eduardo Nunez drove in two runs to help the Twins to an 8-5 win. Torii Hunter stroked an RBI double and Brian Dozier added an RBI with two runs scored for Minnesota, which has won two of its last three.
Twins starter Trevor May, who was born in Longview, Washington, had his homecoming cut short after he was drilled with a grounder in the fourth inning. He allowed two runs on three hits with five strikeouts over 3 1/3 innings.
"It's always scary when your pitcher gets hit like that," Twins manager Paul Molitor said of May. "The good news is that the X-rays were negative. The right elbow is going to be sore and he will be day-to-day."
Tim Stauffer (1-0) picked up the win for two innings in relief of May.
Seattle starter James Paxton (0-2) was not helped by his fielders in this one, yielding four runs -- one earned -- on five hits with seven strikeouts in 4 2/3 frames.
Austin Jackson homered and knocked in two runs and Nelson Cruz also had a pair of RBI for the Mariners.
"We shot ourselves in the foot quite a bit tonight," Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon said. "It cost us the ball game."
Minnesota took five of seven from the Mariners last season.