NEW YORK -- Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Felix Hernandez has been voted American League Pitcher of the Month for August.
Hernandez compiled a perfect 4-0 record with 3 shutouts, a 1.08 ERA, 5 walks and 31 strikeouts in 41.2 innings pitched over five starts while opponents batted just .137. Among qualifying starters, the 26-year-old finished first in the AL in ERA, and was T1st in wins, and 3rd in innings pitched.
Hernandez threw the first Perfect Game in Mariners history and the 23rd Perfect Game in MLB history on August 15 vs. Tampa Bay in a 1-0 victory. It was the 7th Perfect Game in MLB history to be decided in a 1-0 contest, the first in the AL since 1984. All three of his August shutouts were by 1-0 score, becoming the third pitcher in Major League history with three 1-0 shutouts in a calendar month, joining Carl Hubbell (July 1933) and Dick Rudolph (August 1916).
In an August 4th matchup against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium, the right-hander allowed two hits, two walks and fanned six as the Mariners edged the Yankees, 1-0. The shutout marked just the 10th time that the Yankees were held scoreless at the current Yankee Stadium, two of which have come at the hands of Hernandez (also June 30, 2010).
After allowing five runs (four earned) on five hits and striking out three in a no-decision against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on August 10th, the Venezuela native etched his name into the record books during his next start against the Tampa Bay Rays on August 15th, hurling the first perfect game in team history and the 23rd in Major League history in a 1-0 victory at Safeco Field. Hernandez struck out 12 in the 113-pitch outing, becoming the youngest pitcher in nearly 30 years to reach perfection and becoming just the second foreign-born pitcher to complete a perfect game, joining Nicaragua’s Dennis Martinez (July 28, 1991).
Hernandez’s roll continued against the Cleveland Indians on August 21st as the 2010 A.L. Cy Young Award winner allowed one run on five hits with five strikeouts over 7.2 innings as the Mariners defeated the Tribe, 5-1, in Seattle.
In his final start of the month on August 27th against the Minnesota Twins, Hernandez scattered five hits and struck out five in a complete game, 1-0 victory at Target Field. Hernandez became just the fifth pitcher since 1968 to record four 1-0 shutouts in a season, with Bert Blyleven the last to reach the feat during the 1976 season. His five shutouts are a club record, and he is the first pitcher since Randy Johnson in 1998 to record five shutouts in a 12-start span.
On the season, Hernandez is 13-6 with a 2.51 ERA and 191 strikeouts in 204.0 innings pitched over 28 starts in his eighth season with the Mariners.
This is Hernandez’s third career monthly honor, the 16th AL Pitcher of the Month honor for the Mariners and the 2nd consecutive (Vargas, July 2012). In recognition for his American League Pitcher of the Month Award, Felix Hernandez will receive a specially designed trophy, suitably engraved, for his accomplishment.
Seattle has back-to-back Pitcher of the Month awards for the second time in club history (also: Felix Hernandez & Jarrod Washburn in June & July 2009). Seattle has garnered six of the 23 Pitcher of the Month Awards since the start of the 2009 season.