Mariners rally late to stun Giants 8-7 in 10 innings

Tim Booth Ap Sports Writer
Friday, April 2, 2021

SEATTLE (AP) — After 550 days without fans in attendance, the Seattle Mariners treated those who stuck around late into the night to one of the more unlikely comebacks seen on opening day.

Jake Fraley walked with the bases loaded in the 10th inning to score Evan White with the winning run, and Seattle rallied from a five-run deficit to beat the San Francisco Giants 8-7 on Thursday.

A wild opening night concluded with a massive comeback by the Mariners, who scored six runs in the eighth to take a 7-6 lead, only to lose it on pinch-hitter Alex Dickerson’s solo homer in the ninth.

According to Sportradar, the Mariners were the 16th team to rally from a deficit of five or more runs on opening day and win, dating to 1906. The Royals became the 15th earlier in the day when they came back against Texas.

Seattle was the first team to trail by five-plus runs in the eighth inning or later and win on opening day since the Montreal Expos in 2002.

“I’m a strong believer in this game is a game of momentum, a game of vibes as well,” said Mariners center fielder Taylor Trammell, who had a key nine-pitch walk as part of Seattle’s big eighth inning. “So the momentum and the vibes were in our favor and there was no doubt in my mind that we were going to win this game.”

Evan Longoria, Buster Posey and Austin Slater also went deep for the Giants, but their bullpen struggled all night, capped by Jose Alvarez’s inability to throw strikes in the 10th. Alvarez walked Trammell and Dylan Moore to begin the inning, loading the bases after White started on second base.

Alvarez (0-1) wasn’t close against Fraley, and Seattle celebrated an unlikely victory when the reliever’s 3-1 pitch was wide.

Seattle had just five hits, but walked nine times.

“Not being able to throw strikes, that’s going to hurt you at the major league level,” San Francisco manager Gabe Kapler said. “So we’ve got to do a better job, and that was definitely the story of tonight’s baseball game.”