The San Diego Padres no longer have the majors' worst record.
It's hard to tell they're even near the bottom of the standings when they play the Seattle Mariners .
San Diego goes for a fifth consecutive victory over the Mariners on Saturday night when this interleague series continues at Petco Park.
With the Cubs losing Friday, the Padres (25-46) are now one-half game in front of major league-worst Chicago after pounding out 11 hits and snapping a three-game losing streak with a 9-5 series-opening victory over Seattle (30-42).
The Padres' highest-scoring home game of 2012 came after they had lost a season-high five in a row at Petco.
San Diego is batting .230 and scoring a league-low 3.38 runs per game overall, but the club is hitting .284 and averaging 5.25 runs in four games against the Mariners this year.
Saturday's scheduled starter Jason Marquis (1-2, 1.86 ERA) barely needed any run support to help the Padres win the middle game of their first sweep of the season last week in Seattle.
Making his second appearance in the majors after signing a minor-league deal May 29, the veteran right-hander went 6 1-3 innings in a 1-0 victory over the Mariners on June 13 for his first win in a Padres uniform. It was a better performance than he had in Minnesota's 7-0 loss at Seattle on May 5, when Marquis walked six and yielded two runs.
Marquis is looking to build off a 10-strikeout performance - his second-highest total in 277 career starts - in Monday's 2-1 loss to Texas.
"I think this is sort of a second lease on life for him," manager Bud Black told the Padres' official website. "The guy, you look at his track record, there is some well-pitched baseball. (General manager Josh Byrnes) went and got him when there was a need for us, and he has taken a hold on this opportunity. He's pitching well. Let's hope it continues."
The Mariners hope Felix Hernandez (4-5, 3.52) can put a stop to their rotation's struggles. Seattle's starters have a combined 7.44 ERA during the team's 3-9 stretch, yielding 29 runs over 19 1-3 innings in the first four games of this road trip.
"Our starters have been struggling on the road and it makes it tough," manager Eric Wedge said.
In his last outing, the 2010 AL Cy Young winner fanned seven and surrendered one run in seven innings of Sunday's 2-1 win over San Francisco. Hernandez didn't pick up the victory, but it was a promising performance after he posted a 6.37 ERA in his previous six outings.
"Felix is Felix," first baseman Justin Smoak told the Mariners' official website. "When he doesn't dominate, everybody freaks out. But he's going to dominate. That's what he does."
After missing a start with a back injury, Hernandez didn't have his best stuff in a 5-4 loss to San Diego on June 12, walking three and getting tagged for five runs and nine hits in six innings.
Ichiro Suzuki , 4 for 16 with four walks against Marquis, is batting .370 in 31 career games in San Diego following Friday's 3-for-5 effort.
The Padres had dropped four straight and 14 of 17 at home to Seattle prior to this series.
|June 13, 2012||Stephen Pryor||15-Day DL||Strained left groin|
|June 12, 2012||Mike Carp||Day-to-Day||Right shoulder injury|
|June 11, 2012||Mike Carp||15-Day DL||Right shoulder inflammation|
|June 05, 2012||Felix Hernandez||Day-to-Day||Lower back soreness|
|May 07, 2012||Blake Beavan||Day-to-Day||Left game - right elbow contusion|
|May 01, 2012||Miguel Olivo||15-Day DL||Strained right groin|
|San Diego Padres|
|June 10, 2012||Cameron Maybin||Day-to-Day||Left game - Sprained neck|
|June 04, 2012||Will Venable||Day-to-Day||Strained right oblique|
|June 04, 2012||Eric Stults||15-Day DL||Strained left latissimus dorsi muscle|
|May 31, 2012||Andy Parrino||15-Day DL||Sore right hand|
|May 26, 2012||Cameron Maybin||Day-to-Day||Left game - Sprained right wrist|
|May 22, 2012||Chase Headley||Day-to-Day||Lower back tightness|
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Felix Hernandez flashed his Cy Young form, and that made all the difference for the Seattle Mariners .
After a season marked by inconsistency, Hernandez - the 2010 winner of the AL Cy Young Award - turned in another outstanding start with his arm and his bat.
Hernandez pitched seven impressive innings and hit a two-run double to lead the Mariners to a 5-1 win over the San Diego Padres on Saturday night.
Hernandez (5-5) limited the Padres to one run and six hits. The right-hander struck out 10 and walked one. His only blemish was a balk that brought home San Diego's only run in the first inning.
"Felix stepped up," Mariners manager Eric Wedge said. "We needed him to. He is our guy."
Hernandez's two-out, two-run double in the second capped a three-run inning in which all the runs were unearned due to second baseman Logan Forsythe 's error.
"I was trying to swing at the first pitch since I thought it would be a fastball," Hernandez said.
In his previous outing Sunday, Hernandez surrendered one run in seven innings of a 2-1 win over San Francisco. Hernandez had an ERA of 6.37 in six starts before then.
"I feel I have to be more consistent," he said. "I know I am pitching good."
Michael Saunders hit a solo homer for Seattle, which has belted eight home runs and scored 32 runs in the first five games of its road trip.
The Padres, who had 11 hits in Friday night's 9-5 win, were held in check by Hernandez, who won for the first time since May 21 against Texas.
"He had great command of all his pitches," San Diego's Mark Kotsay said. "He had a real good feel for his split-finger, which makes his fastball that much more effective. His velocity was not as high as normal.
"But with an 88 mile per hour split, being able to throw it in the hitting zone, having it disappear, it's a tough test for hitters."
Seattle's pitching staff had surrendered 39 runs through the first four games of the trip before Hernandez displayed his award-winning ability.
"When he was down (in the strike zone), he was working good," Wedge said. "You're seeing more life on his fastball. When he does that and on the plate and down, he's as good as it gets."
Hernandez ran into trouble in the first inning when he gave up a one-out single to Cameron Maybin , who went to third on Chase Headley 's double. Hernandez was then called for a balk on a pickoff throw to first base, allowing Maybin to score.
Hernandez then shut down the Padres. He got an inning-ending double play with runners at first and third in the fourth.
"We had our chances. Hit the ball on the nose. It just didn't happen for us," Padres manager Bud Black said.
In the seventh, with runners on first and third, pinch-hitter Kotsay hit a hard liner to second baseman Dustin Ackley , who doubled the runner off second to end the inning.
"I've been more consistent throwing strikes with the fastball," Hernandez said. "The fastball was good, the breaking ball is better."
Jason Marquis (1-3) allowed five runs - two earned - and six hits in seven innings. Marquis was coming off a career-high tying 10 strikeout performance.
Saunders got the Mariners' second-inning rally going with a one-out single. After a walk to Justin Smoak , Ackley hit a grounder to Forsythe, but his throw to shortstop Everth Cabrera bounced in the dirt.
Brendan Ryan then grounded out to score one run before Hernandez, who hadn't batted this season, hit the first pitch down the right-field line to break a 1-1 tie.
Hernandez came into the game with a career batting average of .125 (3 for 24), although one of his hits was a grand slam, which came exactly four years earlier.
Notes: Hernandez has struck out at least 10 batters 18 times, twice this season. ... This was the second straight game that an error by Forsythe led to unearned runs. On Friday, he mishandled Ichiro Suzuki 's groundball in the first inning before Franklin Gutierrez homered. ... San Diego had its four-game winning streak against the Mariners this season snapped. ... Seattle has hit 51 homers in 42 road games, second to the New York Yankees . ... Mariners RHP Hector Noesi (2-8, 5.69) will face Padres right-hander Edinson Volquez (3-7, 4.11) in the finale of the three-game series on Sunday.