PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) - Philip Humber began a comeback bid by throwing two scoreless innings for the San Diego Padres in a 6-5 loss to the Seattle Mariners on Thursday.
Facing the same club he threw a perfect game against four years ago, the 33-year-old right-hander retired his first three batters. He worked around two walks and Jesus Montero’s single in the second.
After Humber’s 2012 perfect game with the Chicago White Sox, his ERA soared to 7.90 a year later with Houston, his last big league season. He was cut from his South Korean team last year.
“One of the guys in the dugout when I got done said, ‘You finally gave up a hit to the Mariners,’” Humber said. “I told him the sad thing is I’ve given up a lot of hits to the Tacoma Rainiers since that perfect game” - a reference to ther Mariners’ Triple-A farm team.
Nathan Karns allowed Cory Spangenberg’s single and a walk in two scoreless innings in his Mariners spring training debut.
Luis Sardinas’ consecutive two-run doubles in the fifth and sixth put Seattle ahead.
Alexei Ramirez had an RBI single off Joe Wieland in his first San Diego appearance, ending the Padres’ 11-inning scoreless streak at the start of the exhibition season.
Mariners: Karns, acquired from Tampa Bay in November, struggled with his control working out of the stretch in the first inning.
“I’ve always had to compete to make a team, since 2009, so it’s the same story every camp,” the 28-year-old said. “In the past I’d be very critical of every little thing, and that just comes from lack of experience. Now I know this call isn’t being made the first day of camp.”
Padres: Humber is in camp on a minor league deal.
“There have been a lot of trying times,” he said. “But at the same time, a lot of strides with my pitching and as a person. I’ve met a lot of great people and been a lot of cool places and I really wouldn’t trade any of it.”
Mariners: Nelson Cruz (sore left knee) participated in morning drills. Manager Scott Servais said he could play Saturday. . 1B Stefen Romero left in the fifth after taking a hard grounder off his knee. The ball ricocheted to second and ended with Romero’s putout to finish a double play.
Padres: C Austin Hedges left for a pinch runner after getting hit on the hand in the fifth, but wasn’t injured. . LHP Buddy Baumann returned to camp after doctors in San Diego determined he wouldn’t need back surgery.
CANO HITS THIRD
Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano, who hit cleanup most of last season, batted third for the second straight day and went 0 for 2. Servais plans to bat Cano ahead of Cruz in the regular season.
Mariners ace Felix Hernandez was in full uniform in the clubhouse during the game filming a commercial.
Matt Thornton spent the offseason looking for work before signing a minor league deal with San Diego before the game. That despite a 2.18 ERA in 60 appearances with Washington last season.
Manager Andy Green thinks the 39-year-old lefty arrived with a chip on his shoulder.
“Yeah,” Thornton said, “I’d say so.”
Thornton is a year older than his rookie manager.
Mariners: RHP Taijuan Walker starts Friday against Milwaukee.
Padres: Rotation candidates Colin Rea and Carlos Villanueva pitch Friday night against Kansas City.
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