Felix Hernandez-backed Mariners beat Angels, 4-1, in season opener

Felix Hernandez leads the Mariners to an opening-day victory over the Angels, 4-1

Mike Trout crushed a solo home run to center field in his first at-bat of 2015 Monday, the second straight season in which the Angels center fielder homered off Seattle Mariners ace Felix Hernandez in his first at-bat of the year.

And that was pretty much the extent of the Angels' highlights on a cloudy, 54-degree afternoon in Safeco Field.

Hernandez, the 2010 American League Cy Young Award winner, was dominant for the rest of his seven-inning outing, allowing the one run and two hits, striking out 10 and walking one to lead the Mariners to a 4-1 victory.

The right-hander improved to 6-0 with a 1.49 earned-run average and 62 strikeouts in eight career opening-day starts.

The Angels, trailing, 4-1, threatened against the Mariners bullpen in the top of the eighth when Chris Iannetta and Johnny Giavotella singled off reliever Danny Farquhar with one out.

But left-hander Charlie Furbush struck out Kole Calhoun looking at a full-count fastball, and right-hander Carson Smith struck out Trout swinging at a 93-mph fastball, Trout’s third strikeout of the game.

Angels ace Jered Weaver, making his seventh career opening-day start, gave up four runs and eight hits in six innings, which were as many runs as the right-hander had allowed in 26 2/3 innings of his previous four opening-day starts.

Weaver retired eight in a row before Austin Jackson ripped a two-out double down the left-field line, Seth Smith hit a run-scoring triple to right just beyond the reach of a diving Calhoun, and Robinson Cano laced an RBI single to center for a 2-1 Mariners lead.

Dustin Ackley led off the fifth with a towering home run to right for a 3-1 Seattle lead. Brad Miller singled to center, took second on a wild pitch and scored on Smith’s ground-rule double to left-center to make it 4-1.

Trout provided the only other Angels highlight, leaping above the center-field wall to rob Logan Morrison of a home run to end the eighth inning.

Follow Mike DiGiovanna on Twitter @MikeDiGiovanna

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
53°