SEATTLE — Felix Hernandez threw a five-hitter and Michael Saunders backed the right-hander with a hit a three-run homer to give the Seattle Mariners a 5-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday night.
The Mariners won their third consecutive game and shut down the Reds for a second straight night.
The Reds lost for the fifth time in six games and dropped 11/2 games behind first-place St. Louis in the N.L. Central.
Hernandez (5-5) won his second consecutive start. He struck out nine and walked one. The Mariners beat the Reds 1-0 on a six-hitter by Cliff Lee on Friday.
Saunders hit a three-run homer deep to right in the sixth off starter Sam LeCure (1-4) to give the Mariners a 5-1 lead after a Rob Johnson sacrifice fly broke a 1-1 tie.