White Sox-Mariners Preview
After bouncing back from a brief rough stretch, Seattle's Felix Hernandez can focus on extending his home dominance over the Chicago White Sox.
Hernandez (6-4, 2.38 ERA) allowed 11 runs and 19 hits over 10 2-3 innings to lose two in a row before he gave up one run and three hits in eight innings of a 7-1 win at San Diego on Thursday.
"He stayed in his delivery better," Seattle manager Eric Wedge said. "Executed pitches, good stuff. Controlled the ballgame, which is what we want guys to do.''
Though the star right-hander allowed four runs in 6 1-3 innings to drop to 0-2 with a 6.50 ERA in his last three starts - all on the road - versus Chicago (24-31), he's 2-0 with a 2.17 ERA in five against the White Sox at Safeco Field. Hernandez has not faced them there since 2011, but he's yielded two runs and 13 hits and struck out 24 while going 1-0 in the last three home outings.
The Mariners ace might be the last person Chicago wants to see on the mound as it tries to avoid the club's first-eight game skid since Sept. 14-21, 2010. After their eight-game winning streak at Seattle (25-33) ended with Monday's 4-2 loss, the White Sox are batting .192 while being outscored 37-11 in the last seven contests.
Chicago also will try to avoid its first nine-game road slide since May 30-June 22, 2008.
"It's been tough, but we hope to turn it around," said second baseman Gordon Beckham, who went 0 for 3 on Monday in his first game since he injured his wrist April 9.
Chicago's Adam Dunn drove in a run with a hit in his fourth straight game Monday, but is batting .133 (6 for 45) with 21 strikeouts in his last 13 contests.
Peavy (6-3, 3.62), though, is 5-1 with a 2.25 ERA in nine starts versus Seattle. He's allowed two runs and fanned 23 over 21 innings to win all three career starts at Safeco Field.
However, the right-hander has yielded 10 runs in 10 innings to lose his last two road outings. He allowed six and eight hits in four innings of an 8-3 loss to the Cubs on Thursday.
"I felt good,'' said Peavy, who served up a grand slam to Cubs pitcher Travis Wood. "There was no excuse of it whatsoever.''
A lifetime .313 hitter with two doubles and a home run off Peavy, Raul Ibanez delivered a two-run homer Monday to help Seattle improve to 5-4 since a season-high eight-game losing streak.
"First and foremost, it's nice to get a win to start off a series,'' winning pitcher Joe Saunders said. "We've been kind of struggling of late.''
Teammate Kendrys Morales had an RBI double, and is batting .400 (24 for 60) with 15 RBIs in his last 14 games. He's hit .425 with nine RBIs in his last 11 against the White Sox.