"I felt pretty good out of the stretch," Lester said. "I worked on some different timings and different holds and slide steps and stuff like that, which is good to do, get some timing on that. It is what it is. … I probably made a bad decision on running [Ed Lucas] to second base [in the second]. He'd committed early on going back to second. I didn't help myself too much. We got through two innings. My delivery felt good when I was in it, and the ball was coming out pretty good. Obviously, the results weren't there."
Jorge Soler launched his first homer of the spring for the Cubs leading off the second inning, Kristopher Negron added a solo shot in the fifth and Javier Baez roped a two-run bolt in the seventh, but the Cubs lost their seventh straight Cactus League game, falling to 1-8.
Wade Miley allowed four hits and three runs -- all coming in the second -- during a three-inning stint in his second start for the Mariners (5-4), while first baseman Adam Lind had two doubles and left fielder Stefen Romero was 2-for-3 with a double and three RBIs.
Miley said his location wasn't quite where he wanted, especially on the homer by Soler.
"I just left it over, and he put a good swing on it," said the lefty, who was acquired from the Red Sox this winter. "I thought it was going to be a double off the bat, but I didn't realize what a strong kid he is. He hit it hard."
The Mariners jumped on Lester in the first with an infield single by Norichika Aoki and a bunt base hit by Luis Sardinas, followed by a two-run double from Romero and another RBI double by Lind. The Cubs answered with three of their own in the second, helped by Soler's blast, before Seattle added three more in the second with the help of the trio of errors and Romero's RBI single.
Up next for Cubs:John Lackey will make his Cubs debut on Friday when the Reds come to Sloan Park for the second time this spring. Lackey signed a two-year contract and is coming off a 13-10, 2.77 ERA season with the Cardinals. The game will begin at 2:05 p.m. CT and will be broadcast on a cubs.com webcast .
Up next for Mariners:Hisashi Iwakuma will make his second Cactus League start on Friday in a 12:05 p.m. PT game against the Giants in Scottsdale, Ariz. The right-hander threw two perfect frames in his debut against the Rangers and is slated for three innings in this game, with closer Steve Cishek, Tony Zych and Joel Peralta among the relievers scheduled.