King Felix goes for Mariners in San Diego

(Sports Network) - Seattle ace Felix Hernandez tries to snap a three-start skid on Thursday when the Mariners visit Petco Park to wrap up a four-game, home-and-home interleague series with the San Diego Padres.

Hernandez started the season at 0-2, but won four consecutive starts between April 22 and May 8, beating Houston, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Toronto and Pittsburgh in succession.

The string ended when he got a no-decision in a six-inning effort against the New York Yankees on May 14 - a game Seattle lost, 4-3 - and he subsequently dropped 6-0 and 5-2 verdicts to Cleveland and Texas.

Hernandez is 5-3 in 10 career meetings with the Padres.

He's also 4-2 away from home this season in seven starts.

Hernandez is opposed by righty Andrew Cashner, who makes his eighth start in his 13th appearance.

The 26-year-old opened the year with five straight appearances out of the bullpen and held a 3.86 earned run average with a hold in his initial 9 1/3 innings of work.

He lost a 2-0 verdict and San Francisco in his initial start - the seventh of his career - on April 20, but has since gone 4-1 in six outings, including a 10-4 win at Arizona on May 25.

Cashner has made one career relief appearance against the Mariners and allowed a run on three hits in two innings.

On Wednesday, Will Venable drove in the game-winning run with a bases loaded single in the bottom of the 10th inning to help the Padres edge the Mariners, 3-2.

Yoervis Medina (1-1) was dealt the loss after he allowed consecutive singles to open up the 10th and was forced to walk Chase Headley to load the bases. Venable ripped an inside pitch just off Seattle first baseman Kendrys Morales' glove, scoring Chris Denorfia for the game-winner.

"I got a decent pitch to hit and was able to find a spot where they couldn't make a play," Venable said.

Mariners reliever Tom Wilhelmsen blew the save in the ninth after giving up Kyle Blanks' game-tying sacrifice fly.

Headley added a solo homer for the Padres, who have won two straight after dropping the first of two games in Seattle. Luke Gregerson (3-2) earned the win, tossing a perfect 10th inning.

Jason Bay hit a tie-breaking homer in the top of the ninth and Morales drove in another run for the Mariners, losers in seven straight road contests.

"We have got to get the offense going," Mariners manager Eric Wedge said. "We're not scoring enough runs and we're inconsistent. The guys have to step up."

San Diego won five of six games with the Mariners in 2012, while Seattle did the same - winning five of six - to take the season series in 2011.


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