Felix Hernandez is about to find out whether he still owns the mortgage on 'new' Yankee Stadium - the King is 3-0 in this ball park, with a 0.38 earned run average.
Given that, the Seattle Mariners have as much chance of winning tonight as any game in this series, facing right-hander Hiroki Kuroda and a lineup that includes left fielder Raul Ibanez and third baseman Alex Rodriguez.
Hey, here's Dustin Ackley and we're off:
Mr. Ackley, meet Mr. Kuroda. Ack hit his first career leadoff homer, an opposite field shot that came before the home crowd could finish yelling out the names of its players. Technically, Felix should now have enough runs ...Mariners 1, Yankees 0
Yankees rallied to tie on a Curtis Granderson single and stolen base, then Robinson Cano's two-out RBI single. One won't do it tonight.Mariners 1, Yankees 1
Second inningMariners got a Seager single and walk to Jaso, but Smoak, Carp and Saunders go down in order, failing even to advance the runners. Yikes!
The Mighty Texeira takes a full cut and legs out a 40-foot single. Could have been worse - he could have connected. Felix works around it, and score remains tied.
Third inningMariners go down in order.
Yankees go down in order, only faster.
Fourth inningKuroda retiers Montero and Seager on ground balls, Jaso flied out.
A-Rod and Cano singled to open, but left fielder Mike Carp threw Alex out at the plate when Texeira singled.Yankees might have tried being too aggressive there.
Fifth inningTwo singles and a walk loaded 'em up with one out, but Brendan Ryan struck out. No. 3 hitter Ichiro grounded out weakly. Ouch.
Felix through five innings has thrown 71 pitches and, typically, is in a 1-1 game. Could it be any other way for him? Piching coach Carl Willis wonders whether Mr. Hernandez is so good teammates get caught up in watching him. Food for thought.
Sixth inningIn case anyone in New York forgot him, Jesus Montero broke the tie with an opposite field home run, his fifth of the season. It's not much of a lead, but Felix will take it.Mariners 2, Yankees 1
Yankees got a walk and Cono single to start it, then a three-run home run from Ibanez with two outs to turn the game around. Yikes!Yankeees 4, Mariners 2
Seventh inningSaunders led off with a walk but was caught stealing, and the Mariners went down quickly.Kuroda has given Yankees seven strong inning and, with 105 pitches, is likely done for the night.
Yanks picked up three more hits, though no runs, and chased Felix.