Final Score: Seattle 10, New York 2
Bronx, NY (SportsNetwork.com) – Kyle Seager and Michael Saunders had big nights at the plate to help Felix Hernandez win his fifth straight start in the Seattle Mariners’ 10-2 shellacking of the struggling New York Yankees.
Seager went 4-for-5 with a three-run homer, two triples and three runs scored, with Saunders coming through with a solo shot and a two-run single in Seattle’s fifth consecutive road win over New York. Two of those victories came around an April 30 rainout that was made up on Monday.
Brad Miller added a two-run single that snapped a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning, while Mike Zunino finished 2-for-4 with an RBI in the rout.
Hernandez (8-1) aided the cause by continuing his career-long dominance in the Bronx. The Mariners’ ace struck out eight without a walk while allowing just two runs over seven innings, improving to 5-1 with a 1.37 ERA in seven career assignments at the current Yankee Stadium.
Six of Seattle’s runs were charged to David Phelps (1-3) in the Yankee starter’s six-plus inning stint.
Former Mariner great Ichiro Suzuki knocked in New York’s lone two runs with a fourth-inning single. Yangervis Solarte ended 2-for-4 with a run scored in the loss, the Yankees’ third in four games and 10th in 14 outings at home.
Phelps had matched Hernandez nearly pitch-for-pitch through six innings of play, with the game deadlocked at 2-2 when Zunino opened the seventh with a double to left. Dustin Ackley followed with a walk before Zunino beat Phelps’ throw to third on Endy Chavez’s sacrifice attempt, loading the bases with none out after Yankees manager Joe Girardi’s challenge was upheld.
The light-hitting Miller then shot a single up the middle to bring home a pair of runnners, and Saunders later made it 6-2 with a two-run single off Matt Thornton which rolled under the glove of Yankees first baseman Kelly Johnson.
Hernandez kept the Mariners ahead by retiring nine straight hitters after New York’s two-run fourth, and Seattle put the game out of reach by scoring four more times in the ninth.
Saunders’ fourth homer of the season increased the margin to 7-2 and ex-Yankee Robinson Cano and Justin Smoak singled in front of Seager’s blast off Alfredo Aceves that reached the second deck in right.
New York failed to mount a threat against Hernandez over the first three innings, but got to him in the fourth to knot the score at 2-2.
A Brian McCann single and Solarte’s double to right put the tying run aboard with one out. Hernandez rebounded to fan Alfonso Soriano, but Suzuki’s grounder caromed off the right-hander’s foot and past Miller to send in both runners.
Brian Roberts and Johnson followed with singles, though Suzuki was nabbed by Miller while rounding third on Johnson’s infield hit to prevent further damage.
Seager’s first triple of the night was a long shot off the center-field wall in the second inning, which preceded Zunino’s sharp single that put the Mariners up 1-0.
The second came when Brett Gardner couldn’t make a sliding grab down the left- field line. Derek Jeter scooped up the ball from his shortstop position, thinking it was foul, as Seager hustled into third prior to scoring on Ackley’s fielder’s choice grounder.
Hernandez became the first Seattle starting pitcher to win five consecutive starts since Jason Vargas did so from July 7-31, 2012. He’s also the first Mariners’ hurler to begin a season 8-1 since Freddy Garcia, Jamie Moyer and Aaron Sele all accomplished the feat in 2001 … Phelps didn’t allow a home run in his ninth straight home start, the longest streak by a Yankee pitcher since Shane Rawley and Ray Fontenot through parts of the 1983 and ’84 seasons … Cano went 1-for-3 with two walks in his return from a four-game absence caused by a bruised left hand … The Mariners opened a seven-game, three-city road trip that continues Tuesday in Atlanta.