SEATTLE -- Mariners ace Felix Hernandez became the first American League pitcher to six wins this season, after allowing two runs in seven innings in a 4-3, series-sweeping victory over the division-rival A's at Safeco Field on Sunday afternoon.
Along the way, the undefeated Hernandez notched his 2,000th career strikeout. At 29 years, 32 days old, the right-hander became the fourth-youngest pitcher to reach the plateau.
Hernandez surrendered a pair of home runs to the hot-hitting Marcus Semien but allowed just three other hits on the day. His teammates came through with a three-run fourth inning -- highlighted by doubles from Kyle Seager and Dustin Ackley -- against Oakland starter Jesse Chavez, who allowed four runs in 6 2/3 innings.
Catcher Stephen Vogt hit his team-leading eighth home run in the ninth inning for the A's, who have lost five straight to fall nine games under .500, going 3-7 on their 10-game road trip through Texas, Minneapolis and Seattle. Semien and Vogt finished 6-for-8, everyone else 0-for-25.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Mariners bullpen continues dominance: After a terrible seven-game stretch in which it allowed 11 earned runs in 15 2/3 innings (6.32 ERA), the Mariners bullpen has given up two runs in the last 12 innings. During that three-game span, Seattle hasn't lost.
"'[The] bullpen is stressed because your starters are not giving you innings," Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. "Our guys haven't changed down there, they're good and they know what they're doing. I think they have a chance now to be put in positions to be successful, and that starts with starting pitching."
Semien stays hot: Semien put together the first multi-homer game of his career, with the two long balls off Hernandez giving him five on the season. The A's shortstop finished with three hits and compiled 14 total in 37 at-bats on the club's 10-game road trip, upping his season average to .310.
"His at-bats are terrific," said A's manager Bob Melvin. "Hits two home runs off a guy that just doesn't give up many."
Seattle offense wakes up: The Mariners failed to get a hit in the first three innings, as Chavez breezed through the Seattle lineup. The bats finally woke up in the fourth as Seager followed a Nelson Cruz single with a one-out double to tie the game, 1-1. Ackley added a two-run double later in the inning.
"Getting one time through the lineup probably helped, seeing all his pitches," Ackley said.
WHAT'S NEXT Athletics: Following a 10-game road trip, the A's will return home Monday for a three-game series with the Red Sox. Lefty Scott Kazmir will be on the mound for the opener, beginning at 7:05 p.m. (PT) at the Coliseum. Kazmir allowed six runs in six innings in his last start against the Twins after yielding as many runs in his first five starts combined. He's 9-8 with a 3.98 ERA in 27 career starts against Boston.
Mariners: The Mariners will have their second day off in less than a week on Monday before continuing their nine-game homestand with the first of two against the San Diego Padres on Tuesday at 7:10 p.m. (PT). Left-hander James Paxton gets the start for the Mariners looking for his third straight solid outing. After sporting 6.86 ERA in his first four starts, Paxton's ERA has been 2.57 in the last two.
Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. Josh Liebeskind is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.