The Mariners advanced past the Blue Jays in the American League Wild Card Series after an incredible comeback win in Game 2. That saw them advance to the ALDS against the Astros where they were on the other end of one.
Seattle led from the first inning, putting up six runs on Astros’ ace Justin Verlander, knocking him out after the fourth. However, Houston slowly began to chip away at their deficit and went into the bottom of the ninth trailing just 7-5.
For the ninth, Seattle brought in their closer, Paul Sewald, who got two outs either side of hitting pinch hitter David Hensley with a pitch. Sewald then got within one strike of closing out a victory, only for Houston shortstop Jeremy Peña to keep the game alive with a single.
At that point, Mariners manager Scott Servais went back to his bullpen and brought in Robbie Ray, who is normally a starter and struggled in the series against the Blue Jays. Ray was tasked with facing Astros slugger Yordan Alvarez, who has been one of the best hitters in baseball this season. The move to Ray is now likely destined to be one of the most questioned ones this October, as Alvarez crushed a pitch to give Houston a walk-off 8-7 win.
The Astros have been one of the most successful franchises in baseball in the past couple years, and it’s easy to see why after that homer. They were down a couple runs after their ace had put in probably his worst outing of 2022. That’s a hard thing to overcome in most games, but apparently not this one.
Meanwhile, it was a real gut punch for Seattle. It’s not everyday that you can put up six runs against and knock out Verlander, but they did it in fairly impressive style. Even though they did all that, they still ended up trailing 1-0 in the series.