Felix Hernandez was the story, dominating the Yankees in this 1-0 game, firing the two-hitter.
“He had everything,” Joe Girardi said. “He had all four of his pitches; a couple of different fastballs where he cut it and he sank it. His changeup was outstanding. He was never in any bad counts. You look up and he averaged about a ball per hitter and a couple of strikes per hitter. So it’s not like we were hitting the first strike we were seeing. He just didn’t give us anything to hit.”
He allowed just four baserunners, and no hits after the third inning. Hernandez didn’t give up a hit against his final 22 batters. He fanned six and walked two.
“I told him it was probably the most impressive start that I’ve ever seen as a manager,” Mariners manager Eric Wedge said.
The Yankees were kept off balance.
“That changeup, it defies science,” Seattle shortstop Brendan Ryan said.
“All his pitches have movement,” catcher John Jaso said. “All really have late movement.”
Hiroki Kuroda deserves to be better than 10-8. His ERA is 3.19. This was his 14th start out of 22 allowing two runs or less and his ninth allowing one earned run or less. He gave up one run and seven hits in 6 1/3. He had his daytime scoreless streak snapped at 31 innings, the longest in the majors in 14 years. This was his first loss in five daytime starts. He just couldn’t quite keep up with King Felix, who’s now 10-5 with a 2.63 ERA after his third shutout of the season. He’s 6-0 with a 1.60 ERA over his last 10 starts. And he’s 4-1 with a 1.13 ERA in his five career starts at the new Stadium.
“Obviously he’s a great pitcher,” Kuroda said through an interpreter. “I just wanted to minimize my damage. … It’s a little bit frustrating, but it is what it is.”
Ichiro Suzuki has the longest hitting streak for a Yankee starting his career after an in-season trade, now at 11 games. But he hasn’t managed any multihit games.
The Yankees lost their streak of 21 straight home games with a homer.
They are 3-5 on the homestand with one to go. Sunday’s pitching matchup features Freddy Garcia and Hisashi Iwakuma.