ANAHEIM, Calif. – Felix Hernandez made only one significant mistake in the first six innings, and Mark Trumbo hit it about 471 feet into the fake rocks beyond center field at Angel Stadium.
Despite his dominance, King Felix could tell the Seattle Mariners probably were in for another long afternoon in Orange County.
Ervin Santana pitched into the ninth inning of his fourth straight victory, narrowly outpitching Hernandez in the Los Angeles Angels’ 2-1 victory over the Mariners on Sunday.
Hernandez (10-10) retired 18 of the Angels’ first 19 hitters during his third complete game of the season. His 12 strikeouts were one shy of his career high and included four straight during one overwhelming stretch.
Hernandez limited the Angels to four hits and didn’t walk a batter in eight innings, yet he didn’t seem terribly surprised when Santana (8-8) beat him with a seven-hit performance. After all, Hernandez hasn’t beaten Los Angeles in eight starts since September 2009.
“Santana threw a pretty good game, too, so you’ve got to give him credit,” said Hernandez, who dropped to 1-5 in 12 career starts at Angel Stadium. “He’s a pretty good pitcher, so I just had to keep putting zeros on the board. He’s got to do his thing and I’ve got to do my thing.”
Santana escaped several spots of trouble before losing his shutout bid on Mike Carp’s one-out homer in the ninth on his 115th pitch. All-Star closer Jordan Walden got the Angels’ final two outs for his 25th save.
The Mariners lost two of three in Anaheim despite giving up just four runs in the three-game weekend series.
After Trumbo’s no-doubt homer in the third inning, Vernon Wells added a run-scoring single during a three-hit rally in the seventh for the Angels, who have won 17 of 22 at home while keeping pace with A.L. West leader Texas.
Santana is 5-0 in eight starts since June 21, yielding just 17 hits and two runs in 332/3 innings over his last four starts.