King of NY: Felix looks to continue Bronx dominance

May 14, 2013, 8:51 AM | Updated: 10:30 am

By Gary Hill

The last time Felix Hernandez toed the rubber in the Bronx he befuddled the powerful Yankees for nine innings. The King spun a complete-game, two-hit shutout as the M’s made their lone-run stand in his memorable masterpiece. Curtis Granderson, Derek Jeter, Robinson Cano, Mark Teixeira and Ichiro were all helpless as the Yankees only managed to get one base runner as far as second base.

It was another in a line of dominant efforts at new Yankee Stadium for Felix. He is 4-1 with a 1.13 ERA in five starts in the Yanks’ new home. He has thrown 39 2/3 innings, fanning 40 while only yielding one homer in their cozy confines.

bfb972d5-6c65-439c-b202-b58d5ef5159a
Felix Hernandez is 4-1 with a 1.13 ERA in five career starts at the new Yankee Stadium heading into Tuesday’s start. (AP)

This is the same launching pad where 231 homers were smashed in 2012, the most in baseball. Raul Ibanez is the only Yankee to take Felix deep in the new stadium. Of the five runs Felix has coughed up at Yankee Stadium in nearly 40 innings, three of them came on one swing of the bat from Ibanez.

Felix’s numbers this season are nothing short of spectacular. He’s 4-0 with a 0.71 ERA in his last five starts. That’s three runs in five starts. He has the best ERA in the American League (1.53) and the second-best WHIP (0.90). He’s tied for second in innings (58 2/3) and ranks eighth in strikeouts (56) and ninth in batting average against (.213). He’s been completely dominant on the road, with a 4-1 record and a 1.25 ERA.

The pinstripes will look familiar to Felix tonight, but the faces have dramatically changed. Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Kevin Youkilis and Curtis Granderson are all on the disabled list.

However, several current Yankees have turned back the clock and have helped New York climb to the top of the AL East. They are tied for the best record in the league and second-best record in baseball and despite the heavy losses they are still sixth in MLB in homers.

They still feature slugger Robinson Cano, who is 15-for-41 (.366) all-time against Felix. Vernon Wells has dipped himself into the fountain of youth (.299/.349/.526), but he has not found much luck against The King, going just 6-for-28 (.214) against him. Travis Hafner (7-for-29, .259), Lyle Overbay (2-for-15, .133), Brett Gardner (5-for-19, .294), Jayson Nix (5-for-10, .500) and Ichiro (2-for-5, .400) are the thrust of the new Yankee order.

On the other side, CC Sabathia is 12-4 with a 2.46 career ERA against the Mariners. He is riding an eight-game winning streak into tonight against the M’s and has not lost to them since 2009. Keep this in mind for the game tonight: The top-three batting averages for the M’s against Sabathia belong to Brendan Ryan (.400), Robert Andino (.357) and Kendrys Morales (.357).

It is a marquee matchup in the Bronx tonight. Felix will look to keep the roll going and get the M’s off to a strong start on their nine-game trip.

Date Starting Pitcher
Sunday, September 25 @ 11:10 am

Mariners Roof Report

Brought to you by
Haze then Sunny
High 81° | Low 55°
Roof is open
Rangers at Mariners today at 6:40pm

High Heat

If the M’s come back from two games out with three games to go, they wouldn’t be the fi...
Gary Hill

Is all hope lost for Mariners? It wasn’t for the 1999 New York Mets

The Mariners may be two games out of the playoffs with three games to go, but a comeback isn't completely unprecedented.
8 years ago
James Paxton was called up earlier Wednesday to start in place of the injured Felix Hernandez. (AP)...
Gary Hill

Mariners looking at the most important day of their season

The Mariners are 1.5 games out of the second wild-card heading into their series opener with Toronto. Time is running out to make up ground, and today might be their best chance to do so.
8 years ago
Conor Gillaspie’s bases-clearing triple helped the M’s gain some precious ground on Kan...
Gary Hill

White Sox factoring heavily into Mariners’ postseason chances

If the Mariners are going to surpass Kansas City for the second wild-card spot, they could use some help from the White Sox, who play the Royals five more times.
8 years ago
Mariners left-hander James Paxton owns a miniscule 1.83 ERA in 39.1 innings this season. (AP)...
Gary Hill

Paxton, Walker can help Mariners’ suddenly struggling rotation

The Mariners' starting rotation has improved significantly from last season, but with that group struggling of late, Seattle could use a boost from James Paxton and Taijuan Walker down the stretch.
8 years ago
The Mariners swept the Red Sox in Boston over the weekend for the first time in franchise history. ...
Gary Hill

Looking back on the Mariners’ epic sweep in Boston

The Mariners swept aside the Red Sox at Fenway Park for the first time in club history over the weekend thanks to an epic comeback on Friday night and a bare-knuckle slugfest on Sunday.
8 years ago
With another gem Tuesday against the Phillies, Hisashi Iwakuma is putting together one of the best ...
Gary Hill

No. 2 starter? Mariners’ Hisashi Iwakuma is more like another ace

With another gem in the Mariners' 5-2 win over Philadelphia, Hisashi Iwakuma continues to be one of the best -- and most underrated -- pitchers in baseball.
8 years ago
King of NY: Felix looks to continue Bronx dominance