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Yankees Look To Rebound Against Seattle

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(Sports Network) - Cliff Lee went the distance for a third straight time in last night's win over the New York Yankees. Now another Seattle Mariners ace will try to do the same thing in Wednesday's second installment of a three- game series from Yankee Stadium.

Felix Hernandez will look to even his career mark against the Yankees, as he sports a 2-3 record with a 4.59 ERA in five starts in this series. He beat New York on September 18 last season at Safeco Field, going the distance in a 3-2 win and allowing two runs -- one earned -- and eight hits.

Hernandez has won three of his last four decisions overall and did not factor in the outcome of last Thursday's 3-2 setback in 13 innings versus the Chicago Cubs. He lasted nine frames for the second straight start and yielded a pair of runs on five hits. The right-hander, who beat the Reds with a complete-game effort on June 19, is 5-5 with a 3.28 ERA in 16 starts.

King Felix has struck out at least eight batters in three straight starts and hasn't fared so well on the road this season. He is 1-2 in eight starts away from the Emerald City.

Lee, meanwhile, gave up four runs -- three earned -- and allowed eight hits in Tuesday's 7-4 win in the Bronx. He improved to 7-3 on the season and continued to stifle the Yankees after beating them twice in last year's World Series.

"Cliff really pitched good," said Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu. "Just a phenomenal outing. Efficient and he had command of all of his pitches."

Ichiro Suzuki went 2-for-4 with two RBI, Rob Johnson doubled twice, drove in two runs and scored once, while Franklin Gutierrez homered and crossed the plate twice for the Mariners, who have won two of three and eight of their last 11 games. Seattle is still last in the AL West, 14 games off the lead.

New York's young gun Phil Hughes was aiming for his 11th win of the season yesterday, but was roughed up for seven runs -- six earned -- and 10 hits through 5 2/3 innings.

"They were being aggressive and taking good swings on first-pitch fastballs," said Hughes. "They were hacking on those first pitches."

Nick Swisher homered twice and Curtis Granderson contributed a pair of hits for the Yankees, who lost for just the third time in nine tries.

The Yankees still own bragging rights in the American League East and sit one game ahead of rival Boston. Tampa Bay is three games behind the Bronx Bombers for the top spot in the division. In injury news for New York, which went 4-2 on a recent road trip, outfielder Brett Gardner is still bothered by a bruised wrist and is day-to-day.

Alex Rodriguez is still six homers shy of becoming the seventh player in baseball history with 600 career home runs. Only Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Ken Griffey Jr. and Sammy Sosa have achieved this feat. Rodriguez went 0-for-4 against Lee last night and is 2-for-8 lifetime versus Hernandez with no homers.

New York will send Javier Vazquez to the mound Wednesday and he is 6-6 with a 5.16 ERA in 14 games (13 starts) this season. Vazquez is 0-1 in his last two starts since a three-game winning streak and did not record a decision the last time out in a 6-5 win at Arizona. He was 5-1 in six starts before his current winless stretch.

Vazquez gave up four runs and six hits in five innings. The righty is 3-2 in six games (5 starts) at Yankee Stadium and will take on Seattle for the seventh time in his career. Vazquez is 4-2 in six lifetime starts to go along with a 4.35 earned run average against the Mariners.

Seattle and New York are meeting for the first time since the Yankees won six of 10 matchups a year ago.