Oakland Athletics starter Dan Straily ran into one rough patch in the fifth inning. Seattle Mariners starter Felix Hernandez avoided any of those and continued his dominance of the A’s Saturday in a 3-1 win for Seattle at O.co Coliseum.
Hernandez (2-0) worked into the ninth inning while improving to 9-2 with a 2.64 ERA in 16 career starts at O.co Coliseum. Straily (0-1) worked six solid innings in his first start of the year.
Hernandez is undefeated in his last 10 starts in Oakland dating to the beginning of the 2009 season.
The A’s (2-3) might have had King Felix on the ropes in the bottom of the fourth. After Hernandez retired the first 11 hitters he faced, Jed Lowrie grounded a single up the middle and advanced to third on Brandon Moss’ double to left. Hernandez fanned Yoenis Cespedes to get out of the inning unscathed.
The Mariners (4-1) rewarded him in the top of the fifth.
Kyle Seager led off with a double to left and after a pop out, Straily (0-1) threw a wild pitch that moved Seager to third. It didn’t matter in the end as Dustin Ackley skied a homer over the out-of-town scoreboard in right-center for a 2-0 Seattle lead.
One out later, Abraham Almonte gave Hernandez some insurance with a homer of his own, a bomb into the upper deck in right field, to give the M’s a 3-0 edge.
The A’s threatened again in the sixth when Coco Crisp cracked a one-out triple to right, but Hernandez came back to strike out Josh Donaldson—who is struggling to start the year at 2-for-22 with seven strikeouts so far—and induced Lowrie to pop up on the infield.
Oakland finally got to Hernandez in the ninth when Lowrie led off with his first homer of the season to right-center field. After Moss singled and Hernandez threw a wild pitch to move him to second, Cespedes flew out to right and that ended the afternoon for the former Cy Young winner.
Straily worked six innings and allowed three runs on six hits and a walk, with seven strikeouts. Drew Pomeranz worked a perfect seventh, struggling closer Jim Johnson allowed a hit and struck out two in the eighth and Evan Scribner set the M’s down 1-2-3 in the ninth.
Hernandez went 8.1 innings and allowed a run on six hits, walking one and striking out eight.
Lowrie and Moss had two hits each for the A’s.
The A’s were scheduled to start left-hander Tommy Milone to close out the homestand on Sunday, but manager Bob Melvin announced Saturday that Opening Day starter Sonny Gray (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will get the ball against the Mariners, according to CSNBayArea.com. The Mariners will counter with Erasmo Ramirez (1-0, 2.57 ERA).