Seattle Mariners Can Still Make Playoffs On Final Day Of Regular Season

Going into game number 162, the Seattle Mariners still have a chance for postseason baseball.

ESPN is reporting that the Mariners defeated the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2-1 in 11 innings, to keep their slim playoff hopes mathematically alive. Coupled with the Oakland A’s 5-4 loss to the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas, the Mariners move to one game behind the A’s for the second wild-card playoff in the American League.

In the bottom half of the 11th inning, Mariners infielder Brad Miller hit a one-out double. Infielder Chris Taylor then blooped a single into short centerfield, putting Miller at third and Taylor at first. Outfielder Austin Jackson came to the plate. Jackson had two other chances to put the Mariners ahead, but grounded out both times to end the inning.

Jackson then hit a grounder to Angels second baseman Grant Green, Grant, playing in a drawn-in infield, was supposed to go to second base to start a double play. However, Grant seemed to hesitate, and Jackson ran as fast as he could to first.

“Luckily, I was able to make contact and run as hard as I could,” Jackson said. “I kind of wanted to dive at the base and grab it.”

Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon could do nothing but watch.

“It felt like that play took about an hour and a half,” McClendon said. “I think my heart stopped maybe two or three times.”

Grant went to Shawn O’Malley covering second to get the force out. However, O’Malley’s relay to first was late, Jackson was safe, and so was Miller crossing home plate, scoring the winning run.

Seattle entered the game needing to win its final two games and Oakland to lose its final two in order to tie for the second AL wild-card spot and force a one-game playoff at home Monday.

“We’ve got to hope Oakland loses,” McClendon said. “But we’re playing a meaningful game at 162, and I think that speaks volumes about this organization, and about this club and the direction we’re headed.”

Seattle PI reports that now, Seattle has to win Sunday against the Angels, and hope the A’s lose to the Rangers Sunday, as well. If that happens, the A’s will travel to the Pacific Northwest for a one-game playoff. The winner will then face the Kansas City Royals (who made playoff headlines by making the playoffs for the first time in 30 years) for the wild card game.

Let the games begin!!

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