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MLB News: Mariners on verge of playoff bid after 11-inning win vs. Rangers

J.P. Crawford singled home the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning as the Seattle Mariners reduced their magic number to one for clinching an American League wild-card berth, outlasting the visiting Texas Rangers 10-9 in a slugfest Thursday night.

Mitch Haniger and Jarred Kelenic each hit two home runs for the Mariners (85-70), who need one more win or a loss by the Baltimore Orioles (80-76) to snap their 20-season playoff drought, the longest current skid in the four major North American professional sports.

Marcus Semien homered twice and Sam Huff, Adolis Garcia and Nathaniel Lowe also went deep for the Rangers (66-89), who lost their second in a row and fifth in six games.

After both teams scored in the 10th — the Rangers on pinch hitter Kole Calhoun’s RBI single and the Mariners on Cal Raleigh’s sacrifice fly — Semien gave the Rangers a 9-8 lead with a sacrifice fly in the top of the 11th.

With Kelenic at second to start the bottom of the inning, Dylan Moore lined a single to center, sending Kelenic to third. Pinch hitter Luis Torrens singled to right to tie the score. Crawford fouled off a bunt attempt before Moore stole third. Crawford then hit a liner off the glove of diving third baseman Josh Jung for the winning hit.

Chris Flexen (8-9) got the victory, with John King (1-4) taking the loss.

The game’s first 13 runs scored via nine homers.

Haniger snapped a 25-game homerless streak with a two-run shot in the first.

The Rangers took the lead with three homers off Marco Gonzales in the top of the third. Huff led off by going deep to center. After a one-out single by Josh Smith, Semien lined a two-run shot over the wall in left-center. An out later, Garcia homered to left to make it 4-2.

The Mariners tied it in the bottom of the inning on Haniger’s second two-run shot.

Seattle regained the lead in the fourth on Kelenic’s two-run homer, and he added a solo shot leading off the sixth to extend the advantage to 7-4.

Semien and Lowe went back-to-back with one out in the seventh to pull the Rangers within a run.

Texas tied it at 7-7 in the eighth. Bubba Thompson led off and reached on an infield single. Huff grounded a single to right, sending Thompson to third, and Thompson scored as Kevin Plawecki grounded into a double play.

–Field Level Media

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