An argument could be made that Seattle Mariners ace Felix Hernandez is the best pitcher in the majors. "King Felix" recently set a major-league record by making 16 consecutive starts of at least seven innings and two or fewer runs, yet that was anything but the case against the Nationals on Friday.
Ian Desmond, Anthony Rendon, Wilson Ramos and Jayson Werth -- none of whom had ever faced the former Cy Young winner before Friday -- all hit home runs in Washington's 8-3 victory. It was the first time in Hernandez's career that he had allowed four home runs in one start. (He had not allowed three home runs in a start since June 1, 2012, a span of 79 straight starts, and 40 staight starts without even allowing two home runs.)
In all, the Nationals hit six home runs Friday, with Ramos and Bryce Harper adding two more in the eighth inning. Those six home runs were the most hit in a single game at Safeco Field by any team -- including the Mariners -- in the past 10 seasons, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
"I definitely won’t call him King Felix,” a perhaps prescient Denard Span said prior to first pitch. “Maybe ask me after the game. He’s Felix right now.”
The Nationals continue their West Coast road trip Saturday with another game against the Mariners. Stephen Strasburg will face Roenis Elias on the mound.
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