SEATTLE – Raul Ibanez hit a two-run homer and a two-run double in his first two at-bats, and Felix Hernandez pitched with a comfortable lead for a change as the Seattle Mariners handed the White Sox their eighth straight loss with a 7-4 victory Tuesday night.
Seattle scored three times in the first inning and three times in the third to give Hernandez a rare cushion on a night when he wasn’t at his best early. Thanks to the lead, Hernandez (7-4) was eventually able to find a groove and he ended up pitching into the eighth inning to win his second straight start.
Ibanez hit the first pitch he saw out to right field for his 11th homer and added the double his next at-bat. It was his second game this season with at least four RBIs.
The anticipated matchup between former Cy Young Award winners Hernandez and Jake Peavy (6-4) never materialized into a pitching showdown. Hernandez gave up runs in each of the first two innings, while Peavy was knocked around for six earned runs and seven hits in just 21/3 innings before leaving with an injury to his ribs.
Hernandez settled down quickly after giving up a run in the first and Adam Dunn’s long homer to center field in the second. After Dunn’s 13th homer of the season and a single by Alexei Ramirez, Hernandez retired 16 of the next 17 batters and faced the minimum over the next five innings.
Ramirez led off the eighth with a single, the first Sox hit since the second inning, and Tyler Flowers chased Hernandez with an RBI double.
Oliver Perez gave up an RBI single but got out of the eighth, and Tom Wilhelmsen worked the ninth for his 14th save in 17 chances.
Hernandez went 7 1-3 innings, allowing four runs while striking out eight and walking one.
Seattle came through with two outs twice in the first inning. Kendrys Morales had an RBI single to score Endy Chavez, and that was immediately followed by Ibanez’s homer. It was Ibanez’s second straight game with a home run.
Two innings later, Ibanez doubled into the right-field corner to score Jason Bay and Morales before Peavy had an extended conversation on the mound with manager Robin Ventura. White Sox trainer Herm Schneider was called to the mound and, after a brief talk, walked back to the dugout with Peavy at his side. Peavy was replaced by Brian Omogrosso.
Peavy was tagged for six earned runs for the second straight start after lasting just four innings against the Chicago Cubs in his previous outing. X-rays on his ribs taken at the stadium were negative and he has an MRI scheduled for Wednesday in Seattle.
Omogrosso was greeted by a line drive from Seattle rookie Nick Franklin that was initially ruled a home run despite the ball bouncing back into play. Replays clearly showed the ball hitting the yellow line at the top of the wall, and the call was overturned with Franklin awarded second base.
NOTES: Franklin’s drive was the third time a home run call has been reversed at Safeco Field. ... Seattle C Jesus Sucre left in the bottom of the fifth after taking a foul ball off his wrist in the top of the inning. He was replaced by Kelly Shoppach, who had a sacrifice fly in the eighth to score Michael Saunders. ... Chicago lost its ninth straight road game.