While he insists there's nothing wrong with him physically, Felix Hernandez hasn't pitched much like the Seattle Mariners' ace during his current unkingly stretch.
On pace for his highest ERA since 2007, Hernandez will try to get on track Wednesday night and lead the Mariners to their ninth win in 13 meetings with the visiting Oakland Athletics.
Even Seattle's stars haven't kept the rotation from posting a 9.11 ERA during a 4-7 stretch. Iwakuma allowed a season-high seven runs in an 11-5 loss in the opener and Hernandez (14-8, 3.74 ERA) has gone 2-3 with an 8.48 ERA over his last five starts.
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After giving up a career-high 10 earned runs over 2 1-3 innings in a 22-10 loss at Boston on Aug. 15, Hernandez yielded four runs over six in Friday's 11-4 home defeat to the Chicago White Sox.
The right-hander, who hasn't finished with an ERA above 3.50 in eight years, surrendered a two-run double to Carlos Sanchez in the sixth inning on the way to losing consecutive starts for the first time since dropping four in a row late in the 2013 season.
"I feel really good, outside of that one mistake,'' said Hernandez, who still has a chance to match Houston's Dallas Keuchel for the AL lead in victories.
The six-time All-Star has gone 20-8 with a 2.63 ERA in 38 starts versus Oakland. He's 1-1 with a 3.32 ERA in three meetings in 2015 and 3-0 with a 2.48 mark in four at home over the past two seasons.
Stephen Vogt is 6 for 8 when facing Hernandez this season and 9 for 15 with a home run lifetime, while Marcus Semien is 4 for 8 with two homers.
Semien hit his 11th homer and Billy Burns added three hits Tuesday but Oakland went scoreless over the final seven innings in a 6-5 loss that evened this series.
The AL West-worst A's (55-72) are hitting .339 while scoring 8.0 runs per game in their last three, but they'll try to avoid their 13th loss in 15 road games in the finale.
Oakland rallied from a 5-0 deficit in Monday's win but coughed up a 5-0 lead Tuesday.
''We did it to them and they did it to us,'' Billy Butler said. ''It's tough to lose a game like that when you get out to a lead like that.''
They haven't provided much scoring for Chris Bassitt (1-5, 2.48), who since getting called up July 25 has made six starts with a 2.18 ERA - the fifth-lowest in the AL during that span.
The right-hander only has one win over that span while getting 11 runs of support. It was a familiar story Friday when he allowed one run over 6 2-3 innings in a 2-1 home loss to Tampa Bay.
In his only career start versus Seattle (58-68), Bassitt yielded two runs over 5 2-3 innings in a 2-1 home defeat July 5.
Bassitt will have to be cautious with Nelson Cruz, who hit his MLB-leading 38th home run Tuesday. Cruz is batting .347 with 17 homers while reaching safely in 35 consecutive games.
Ketel Marte is 6 for 9 with two doubles and a triple in this series, while Robinson Cano has gone 10 for 23 over his last six games. On Tuesday, Cano became the first player to have 11 straight 30-double seasons to begin a career.
''As far position players go, we all strive for that consistency," outfielder Logan Morrison said.
The Mariners have batted .313 while totaling 19 runs in their last three games and have also scored 5.2 per contest in winning four of five versus Oakland at Safeco.