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Seattle hopes to add to Boston's misery

So far Boston's trip out west has been a disaster. The Red Sox hope a stop in the Emerald City for a showdown with the Seattle Mariners will bring different results.

Boston was swept in three games by both the LA Angels of Anaheim and the Oakland Athletics, and dropped a 6-2 decision on Sunday.

Daisuke Matsuzaka lasted only 3 2/3 innings and allowed all six runs and seven hits, including two homers, to suffer the loss.

Dustin Pedroia had three of Boston's six hits but couldn't help his team avoid a season-high six-game losing streak. Pedroia is riding a 13-game hitting streak. Cody Ross and Mauro Gomez both drove in a run in defeat.

"It's not easy," Ross said of the losing streak. "But we're professionals. We have to come back from being down. That's the name of the game."

Red Sox center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury was not in the starting lineup because of a wrist injury and could be back this afternoon.

"His wrist has been barking at him a little," Boston manager Bobby Valentine said on the club's website. "When we set off on the road trip, the training room was hoping that one of these days would work. See if we can't get it to feel a little better."

Clay Buchholz will try to stop the bleeding for Boston when he takes the mound Monday and is 3-1 in his last four decisions. Buchholz did not factor in the outcome of a 6-5 loss to the Angels on Tuesday and yielded four runs in seven innings. The right-hander, who owns a 5-2 mark in 11 road assignments, is 11-4 with a 4.50 ERA in 23 starts overall this season and 1-0 with a 2.92 ERA in two career starts against the Mariners.

Seattle salvaged the finale of a three-game series versus the Angels with Sunday's 2-1 victory, as Jesus Montero and Carlos Peguero both homered early on.

Hisashi Iwakuma outdueled Angels ace Jered Weaver by striking out seven batters over 7 1/3 scoreless innings, while Josh Kinney and Tom Wilhelmsen went the rest of the way to preserve the win, Seattle's fourth in the previous seven games. Wilhelmsen posted his 22nd save and allowed a run in the ninth inning.

"(He) had real good stuff today, had a live fastball, had something on the end of his fastball as it was approaching home plate," Mariners manager Eric Wedge said of Iwakuma, who is 4-0 in his last five starts. "(It was) just a great effort, pretty efficient all in all against a very good hitting ball club."

The Mariners have won 16 of their last 19 games at Safeco Field and also will host Oakland on this nine-game homestand.

Jason Vargas draws the start for the Mariners Monday and is winless in his last three trips to the hill (0-1). Vargas was battered in a 10-0 loss at Minnesota on Wednesday and allowed six runs - five earned - in just 4 2/3 innings. He has yielded 13 runs during his current winless streak and fell to 13-9 in 28 starts to go along with a 3.90 ERA.

The left-handed Vargas is 1-2 with a 3.51 ERA in five career starts against Boston.

Boston has won four of six matchups with Seattle this season.