Washburn, M's hand Buehrle first loss of season

SEATTLE (AP) -- Jarrod Washburn hasn't lost confidence in his new
team, the Seattle Mariners.

"We've played pretty good baseball this season and we're
capable of playing much better," the veteran left-hander said.

Washburn pitched into the seventh inning and the Mariners beat
the Chicago White Sox 5-1 on Wednesday night to hand Mark Buehrle
his first loss of the season.

The last-place Mariners took two of three from the first-place
White Sox, who came into Seattle with a little bit of swagger after
an eight-game winning streak. The one run was a season low for the
defending World Series champions.

"I expected us to play well and to win ballgames," said
Washburn, who has a 3.51 ERA in five starts in his first season
with the Mariners after signing a $37.5 million, four-year contract
with the team in December. "I don't think our record is indicative
of how good we are.

"There's a lot of baseball to be played," he said. "I don't
think anybody in here is panicking."

Bouncing back after a 13-3 loss to the White Sox on Tuesday
night in which Chicago homered five times, the Mariners gave
Washburn (2-3) all the runs he needed in a three-run second inning.

"That's good," he said. "Any time you go against a guy like
Buehrle and get three runs right away, it's nice."

Washburn was taken out of the game in the seventh, when the
White Sox scored their only run off him. In 6 2-3 innings, he gave
up four hits, all singles, and a walk with four strikeouts.

Buehrle (3-1) came into the game with a 1.93 ERA in four starts,
a total of 28 innings. He went 2-0 against Seattle last season,
allowing two earned runs in 16 innings.

But the Mariners got to Buehrle for four runs and seven hits in
seven innings in their first matchup this year.

Richie Sexson and Carl Everett opened the second with singles
and Kenji Johjima was hit by a pitch by Buehrle to load the bases.
Adrian Beltre, dropped to seventh place in the batting order from
sixth, then drove in a run with an infield out. It was his fifth
RBI of the season, all in Seattle's nine-game homestand.

Jose Lopez then hit a 2-2 changeup by Buehrle to right field for
a two-run double.

"If he pitches it outside, I try to hit it to right field,"
Lopez said. "This year, I hit it to right field. Last year, I try
to pull the ball a lot. Tonight, I hit it good to right field."

Buehrle gave Lopez credit for hitting a mistake pitch.

"I wasn't getting ahead in the count," Buehrle said.
"Whenever you are falling behind in the count, you have to lay a
pitch in there."

Mariners manager Mike Hargrove likes the way Lopez is maturing
this season. He played 54 games with the team last season after
playing 57 games with Seattle in 2004.

"There's nothing worse than loading the bases and scoring one
run," Hargrove said of the second inning. "Jose is still not a
polished player, but he has a chance to become one."

In the sixth, Raul Ibanez gave Seattle a 4-0 lead when he led
off the inning by hitting a 3-1 pitch over the left-field fence
into the visitor's bullpen for his second homer of the season.

Paul Konerko singled and scored on Juan Uribe's sacrifice fly to
cut the Seattle lead to 4-1 in the seventh.

Rafael Soriano followed Washburn with 1 1-3 hitless innings and
J.J. Putz pitched a scoreless ninth.

Everett hit a sacrifice fly in the eighth to make it 5-1.

The White Sox outscored the Mariners 17-12 in the series, but
still lost their first series after winning four sets in a row.

"It's not how many runs you score in one game, it is how many
games you win in a series and we lost the series," Chicago manager
Ozzie Guillen said.<
^Notes: Johjima was hit by a pitch for the fifth time this season,
tops in the AL. ... The Mariners beat a LHP starter for the first
time in seven decisions. ... Buehrle now is 6-4 in his career
against Seattle, including 1-3 at Safeco Field. ... Washburn evened
his career record to 5-5 against the White Sox. His last win over
Chicago came July 7, 2004, at Comiskey Park. ... The Mariners were
3-6 on their homestand.