Mariners News: King Felix Fires Perfect Frame to Help Lead AL Past NL

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The 2015 MLB All-Star Game took place Tuesday night at the Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati. The Seattle Mariners had a small contingent of players at this season’s mid-summer classic, as just Felix Hernandez, Nelson Cruz and manager Lloyd McClendon were named to the American League All Star team. The AL proved victorious, winning 6-3 against the National League, and King Felix was a big reason why.

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The All Star game is the crown jewel of the summer, and it is fitting that King Felix was at his best tonight for the AL. Much to the chagrin of Mariners’ nation, Ned Yost went with Dallas Keuchel over Felix Hernandez as the AL starting pitcher. Felix was tasked with taking over for the Astros’ ace southpaw in the top of the 3rd inning. Hernandez got DJ LeMahieu to line out to Mike Trout in center field for the first out. Next up was 2014 NL MVP, Andrew McCutchen. King Felix reigned supreme, striking out McCutchen on a filthy curveball. Todd Frazier won the Home Run Derby last night in his home ballpark, but the 29-year-old right-hander sat him down with ease this evening. Frazier grounded out weakly to shortstop on the first pitch he saw to end the 3rd. Hernandez hurled a perfect frame in his lone inning of work tonight.

2015 has been a disappointment thus far for the M’s, but that has had little to do with their ace. King Felix leads the league with 11 wins, and his 2.84 ERA is good for 11th in the American League. He also leads the Majors with a pair of complete game shutouts this season. Hernandez has struck out 112 and walked 35 across 18 starts. He is allowing just 1.065 walks/hits per inning through his first 117.1 frames. Felix may not be having a Cy Young type of season, but he was more than deserving of his spot on the All Star team.

Jul 13, 2015; Cincinnati, OH, USA; American League designated hitter

Nelson Cruz

(23) of the Seattle Mariners during workout day the day before the 2015 MLB All Star Game at Great American Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The fans deemed Nelson Cruz worthy of being the American League starter at designated hitter, and deservingly so. Cruz was sandwiched in between Albert Pujols and Lorenzo Cain in the cleanup spot for the AL’s stacked lineup. Unfortunately, the 34-year-old struggled in his 2 at bats. Facing Zack Greinke in the top of the 1st, Cruz struck out on 4 pitches. He led off the 4th inning by flying out to Bryce Harper in right field. It was a fairly uneventful night for Cruz, but it was still fun to watch him out there with the best in the sport.

Nelson Cruz is having a phenomenal debut campaign in the Emerald City. Cruz starred with the Baltimore Orioles last season, but he has taken his game to a whole different level with the Mariners. He is putting together a career year, posting a .307 batting average with 21 home runs and 53 RBI’s. Cruz has registered a .373 on base percentage, and he has slugged .546 across 328 at bats. He has been the only bright spot in a dismal season for the M’s offensively.

The Mariners were represented well by Felix Hernandez and Nelson Cruz tonight. It has been a rough season for the fans in Seattle, but tonight was a moment to be proud of.

Next: Reliving the 2001 ASG at Safeco Field

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