Hernandez gave up 12 hits, seven runs and two home runs in a 8-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks at Safeco Field.

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Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon, eyes glowing, saw it this way: “We got our butts kicked in this series.”

Shortstop Brad Miller summed up the series like this: “They came out and beat us into the ground pretty, pretty good. Not good at all.”

The slide continues. The Mariners (46-56) are 10 games below .500 for the first time this season. They were swept for the first time in nearly two months. And the culprit of Wednesday’s 8-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks at Safeco Field was the unlikeliest of suspects: Felix Hernandez.

Felix by the numbers

3 Times Hernandez has allowed seven or more earned runs this season. He did that only once last year.

2006 Last time Hernandez allowed seven or more earned runs in three different starts in the same season, his first full year in the majors.

Hernandez gave up 12 hits, seven runs and two home runs. He left with two outs and two on in the seventh inning, reluctantly handing the ball to McClendon and appearing displeased with himself.

Part of the problem with evaluating Hernandez is that the standard he has set over the past 10 years has made any stumble feel heavier than it should.

It is a testament to just how good he has been that on days when he just doesn’t have it, the results feel almost shocking. And he did not have it Wednesday.

“His command was off,” McClendon said. “His stuff was plenty good but command was off. A lot of pitches in the middle of the plate.”

Hernandez had been Felix-esque in his previous five starts — four earned runs in 33 innings, a 1.09 ERA — but he gave up that many runs in the first inning against the Diamondbacks.

“I made mistakes, that’s all,” Hernandez said.

It was the third time this season that Hernandez allowed seven or more earned runs; he did that only once last season. And it was the fourth time this season he has given up at least two home runs in a start, also something he did only once last year.

In fact, you have to go back to 2006, Hernandez’s first full year in the majors, to find a season in which he allowed seven or more earned runs in three different starts, and two home runs in three different starts in the same year. He is 12-6 this year with a 3.02 ERA.

Hernandez gave up a single, a double and another single to the first three batters. He gave up a home run to former Mariner catcher Welington Castillo in the first inning and another one to Castillo in the fourth.

Felix by the numbers

3 Times Hernandez has allowed seven or more earned runs this season. He did that only once last year.

2006 Last time Hernandez allowed seven or more earned runs in three different starts in the same season, his first full year in the majors.

“He had my number,” Hernandez said. “That’s fine.”

You might remember that the Mariners traded Castillo, with reliever Dominic Leone and two prospects, to the Diamondbacks in early June for Mark Trumbo and reliever Vidal Nuno.

In 35 games with Arizona, Castillo is batting .279 with a .375 on-base percentage and eight home runs. In 43 games for the Mariners, Trumbo is hitting .228 with three homers and a .268 on-base percentage.

Hernandez was poised to get out of the seventh inning without further harm, having given up five runs to that point.

With two runners on and two outs, he induced a deep fly ball from David Peralta. Off the bat, it looked like center fielder Austin Jackson or right fielder Nelson Cruz would track down the ball. Instead, it bounced between them for a two-run triple. After Hernandez walked the next batter — Castillo — his day was done.

The Mariners finished the homestand 2-4 after getting swept by the Diamondbacks. It was the first time the Mariners have been swept since the first week of June, when they lost three in a row to the Yankees.

The trade deadline is Friday, and the Mariners, along with Boston, Oakland and Cleveland, are at or near the bottom of the American League standings.

“We’ve got to win,” Miller said. “At this point, we’ve put ourselves in a hole, so we have to start making some moves and actually string something together and start climbing.”