With a roster full of solid young talent, the Seattle Mariners are someday going to look back on the 2012 campaign as a building season. They currently are in third place in the AL West, trailing the Rangers by seven games.
With the mariners not scoring until the bottom of the sixth, Hernandez had to be on top of his game and was, setting down the first nine batters he faced until Denard Span got the only Minnesota hit of the game, a single to open the fourth inning.
Hernandez got the next two outs, though Span advanced to third base. After walking the bases loaded with his only two walks of the game, Hernandez induced an inning-ending fly to left from Chris Parmalee, ending the bases-full threat.
It was no contest after that, as Hernadez bulldozed through the next four innings retiring the final 13 batters he faced in order, before turning the ball over to reliever Steve Delabar to mop up in the ninth.
Finishing with nine strikeouts, Hernandez improved to 3-1, taking over the AL lead in whiffed batters with 51.
Chipper Jones has already announced his retirement at the end of the 2012 season, but that doesn't necessarily mean he's taking a season-long, lazy victory lap.
Long a mainstay of the Braves' offense, the 40-year-old remains an exceptionally dangerous hitter, as was proven Saturday when he helped Atlanta come back from a 6-0 deficit and defeat the Rockies, 13-9.
Colorado scored four runs in the first inning and two more in the second before the Braves got started. After scoring a single run in the third, Jones doubled home a run in the top of the fifth as Atlanta put two ore on the board.
In the sixth, Jones singled in a pair as the Braves added five more runs to tie the game at eight, he drove in two more with another single as the Braves put up four more runs to take the lead for good. Overall, Jones went 3-for-6, drove in five runs and scored once, the win helping Atlanta keep pace in the NL East, where they trail the Nationals by 1 1/2 games.
It was the second straight win over the Rockies in Colorado, the Braves seeking the series sweep Sunday afternoon.