Mariners win chaotic WC vs Blue Jays in 2nd best game of 2022

Wild Card Series - Seattle Mariners v Toronto Blue Jays - Game Two
Wild Card Series - Seattle Mariners v Toronto Blue Jays - Game Two / Vaughn Ridley/GettyImages
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Had it not been for another extra-special win this season, game number two would have been number one. The Mariners looked lost early against the Blue Jays in game two of the WC round. Seattle pitchers gave up eight runs in the first five innings of play. The M’s trailed Toronto 8-1 and looked to be facing an elimination game on Sunday.

However, the Mariners were unfazed by an early game malaise, as they began to stage a comeback in the top of the sixth. Ty France, Eugenio Suarez, and Cal Raleigh hit three consecutive singles to load the bases with no outs. Blue Jays starting pitcher Kevin Gausman dug himself out of the hole by striking out Mitch Haniger and getting Adam Frazier to pop out to first. Then Toronto made a controversial decision to take Gausman out of the game after recording two outs without surrendering a run with bases loaded and nobody out (he was at 95 pitches when he was relieved).

Tim Mayza came into the game to relieve Gausman, and he got off to a rocky start by throwing his first pitch wild, which allowed France to score, and moved Raleigh to second and Suarez to third (the score was then 8-2). Two pitches later, Carlos Santana blasted a 1-1 sinker from Mayza over the left field wall for a three-run home run to make the score 8-5. The Blue Jays would respond in the bottom of the seventh with an RBI single from Danny Jensen to make it 9-5.

In the top of the eighth, the Mariners started another rally hammering Anthony Bass for three consecutive hits, including an RBI single from Cal Raleigh (the score was now 9-6). Mitch Haniger had a single and Raleigh advanced to second. With runners on first and second and no outs, Toronto went to their bullpen again bringing in their closer Jordan Romano. Romano had been phenomenal all year for the Blue Jays with a 2.11 ERA, and he was their best reliever. Adam Frazier greeted him with a single to left field, loading the bases with no outs. Romano would regroup to strike out Carlos Santana and Dylan Moore.

JP Crawford stepped to the plate as the Mariners last hope with two outs in the top of the eighth and the bases loaded. On the first pitch of the at-bat, Crawford flared a ball into shallow center field, Toronto shortstop Bo Bichette and center fielder George Springer collided as the ball fell into the outfield. Cal Raleigh, Mitch Haniger, and Adam Frazier all scored amidst the chaos that left Bo Bichette and George Springer injured. The game was tied at 9-9, Bichette was able to stay in the game after collecting himself, while Springer would have to leave the game on a cart, sustaining a concussion on the play.

Andres Munoz came in to pitch for Seattle in the bottom of the eighth and threw a scoreless inning. Cal Raleigh doubled off Romano with one out in the top of the ninth. Mitch Haniger then flew out to center, there were two outs in the top of the ninth in a tie game with Cal Raleigh representing the go-ahead run. Adam Frazier stepped to the plate and laced the first pitch he saw down the right field corner driving in Raleigh to give the Mariners a 10-9 lead.

George Kirby came in to close out the game in the bottom of the ninth, trying to send Seattle to the ALDS and earn his first save. Kirby was able to get Teoscar Hernandez (who had homered twice in the game) to ground out to JP Crawford. He then walked Matt Chapman. Then Kirby recovered by striking out Danny Jansen looking. Raimel Tapia was the Blue Jays last chance, with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Kirby got to fly out safely in the glove of Julio Rodriguez. The Mariners advanced to the ALDS in one of the wildest and most historic comebacks in franchise history 10-9 over the Blue Jays!