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WSH@PIT: Burnett fans nine over seven innings

Pittsburgh's pitching staff silenced the Mariners' bats on Tuesday, but left-fielder Jason Bay hopes to change that as the Mariners look to split the brief two-game set on Wednesday.

Not only does Bay -- who played four full seasons for the Pirates -- hold the record for the most home runs at PNC Park with 61, he has also had success against Pirates starter A.J. Burnett

In 22 career at-bats, Bay is hitting .364 against Burnett.

The Pirates' ace is seeking his fourth straight victory after an 0-2 start, and will look to build off the momentum he has created recently.

Burnett enters Wednesday's start with a 1.12 WHIP and 57 strikeouts (second in the NL to the Mets' Matt Harvey).

Burnett will be facing an opposing ace for the first time since his second start of the year, as the Mariners send Felix Hernandez to the hill.

"He's as good as there is," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of Hernandez. "He's built for endurance. He's got power, spin, changes speeds, local -- the total package off the mound. A dominant pitcher."

In his one career start against the Pirates, Hernandez threw eight shutout innings with nine strikeouts.

Pirates: Challenge in Interleague play
• The Pirates are one of the last National League teams to play an Interleague series this season. The Cardinals, Giants and Padres are the only NL teams that have yet to face an American League opponent.

"I can't tell you if it's more difficult, because it's our first time through it," Hurdle said. "When we played the games in one block, you could add a hitter. Now, it's more challenging from that standpoint."

• Neil Walker is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment on Thursday and join the Pirates shortly thereafter.

Prior to his rehab assignment, Walker is scheduled to work out at PNC Park on Wednesday.

Walker is eligible to come off of the disabled list May 12 and may be activated on either the 12th or 13th.

Mariners: Playing away from Safeco
• Wednesday's game will be the fifth and final game of the Mariners' current road trip, on which they are 2-2, but that doesn't mean they should forget what it is like to play on the road.

After a three-game home series against the A's, the Mariners will hit the road for nine games against the Yankees, Indians and Angels.

Worth noting:
• Hernandez has allowed only two earned runs in his last 30 innings of work.

• Kendrys Morales has a career .375 average (3-for-8) against Burnett.

• The Mariners are 5-2 against the Pirates all-time. The teams last met in 2007. Comments