[caption id="attachment_209" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Felix Hernandez"] [/caption]Felix Hernandez goes for his career-best 15th victory of the season tonight, matched against the best-hitting team in the American League.
The Angels come in batting .287 as a team, the Mariners come in with the league's lowest earned run average - with Felix making a huge chunk of that.
With 193 1/3 innings pitched, Mr. Hernandez is 7 1/3 innings from matching his career high in that department. His Cy Young Award candidacy demands another fine game tonight.
Last time out, he faced these same Angels, pitched eight shutout innings and allowed four hits. Can he match that, or will the Angels have made adjusments?
It's Felix vs. Scott Kazmir.
Franklin goes yard
Center fielder Franklin Gutierrez just crushed a Kazmir fastball over the wall in right-center field - a prodigious poke that was his 16th of the season.
In 224 big-league games before joining Seattle, he hit 22 homers.
In the first: Mariners 1, Angels 0Playing 'D'
As you might expect with these two teams, defense is a factor. In two innings there have been four superb plays - two for each side.
Third baseman Chone Figgins robbed Mike Sweeney of a hit with a leaping catch - and shortstop Jack Wilson robbed Torii Hunter with a leaping catch of his own.
First baseman Kendry Morales leaned far over the dugout railing to bring in a pop fly from Bill Hall, and Adrian Beltre rook a hit away from Erick Aybar with a marvelous catch and throw from third base.
Ichiro, who's five hits shy of 200 for the season, is 0-for-2 so far.
In the third inning: Mariners 1, Angels 0
Seven batters into his game, Felix lost control - walking both Mike Napoli and Gary Matthews.
Chone Figgins bunted he runners up, and Hernandez fell behind Macir Izturis, 2-0, bringing a visit from pitching coach Rick Adair.
Felix walked Izturis, loading the bases with hitters who hadn't put a ball in play. Bobby Abreu flied out, pushing the tying run home.
After three: Mariners 1, Angels 1
Another walk, Felix's fourth, a base-hit and then a run-scoring error by shortstop Jack Wilson on a rocket of a ground ball hit by Bobby Abreu that scored Figgins.
Hernandez has thrown far too many pitches, forcing himself to to work harder than the Angels hitters have.
After five: Angels 2, Mariners 1
Bill Hall blooped a single into center and took second base with no one out on a passed ball.
Jack Wilson tried to bunt and struck out. Josh Wilson grounded out to third. Rob Johnson struck out.
In the seventh: Angels 2, Mariners 1
One of Seattle's hottest hitters the past three weeks, Mike Sweeney took a Brian Fuentes pitch deep, his seventh home run of the season.
Mariners couldn't push home the run that would have put them ahead, but they tied it.
In the ninth: Mariners 2, Angels 2
Mark Lowe struck out Kendry Morales, but his wild pitch got passed Kenji Johjima and Morales reached first base.
Erick Aybar tried to bunt, Beltre bounced on the ball and threw Morales out at second but shortstop Wilson threw wildly - an unnecessarily - toward first and instead skipped one into the camera well.
That moved Aybar to second with one out. Lowe got Napoli on a fly ball. Matthews walked. Figgins walked, loading the bases.
On the first pitch to him, Izturis popped out.
After nine: Mariners 2, Angels 2
Miguel Batista pitching, Abreu singled and the Angels bunted him to second base. A ground ball moved him to third base.
The Mariners walked Morales intentionally - wouldn't you? - but Aybar singled to win it.
It's a final: Angels 3, Mariners 2