By Brent Stecker
After a week where Felix Hernandez struck out 23 batters and allowed just two runs in 14 2/3 innings, there was no doubt who was King of the American League.
Hernandez was named the AL Player of the Week on Monday, a day after he dominated the Tampa Bay Rays, striking out 15 over seven scoreless innings. He didn’t leave with the win, but the Mariners eventually did thanks to a five-run rally in the ninth.
Earlier in the week, Hernandez defeated the Yankees in New York, allowing just two runs in 7 2/3 innings, striking out eight and issuing no walks.
Hernandez, 28, is off to one of the best starts of his career and is once again an early contender for the Cy Young Award, which he won in 2010. Through 14 starts, he is 8-1 with a 2.39 ERA, 1.01 WHIP and 106 strikeouts in 98 innings.
The next start for Hernandez is scheduled to be Friday at home against the Texas Rangers.