MLB: Cal Raleigh sends Mariners to playoffs; First participation since 2001

Designated hitter Cal Raleigh couldn’t have thought of a better scenario to send the Seattle Mariners to their first MLB playoff appearance since 2001.

With two strikeouts and a full count in the bottom of the ninth inning against the Oakland Athletics, Raleigh broke a 1–1 tie with a home run to right that sowed hysteria at T-Mobile Park.

It was Raleigh’s 26th shot of the season… his first at bat all night.

Authors of 86 wins (against 70 losses), the Mariners still have a chance to join the Toronto Blue Jays for the first of two spots reserved for American-drafted teams, with six games to play.

Quite a turnaround for a club that as of June 10 had played 10 games under the .500 mark.

The Mariners’ 21-campaign clean streak was the longest not only in major league baseball, but in all of North America’s major sports.

Starter Logan Gilbert was a key part of Seattle’s historic victory, working eight innings on the mound, allowing only one run, on a Shea Langeliers homer.

It was the longest streak of Gilbert’s young career, making 32 starts this season, his second in MLB.

The Scott Servais-led formation has won its last three meetings. It has two games left at home against Oakland before hosting the Detroit Tigers four times (including a doubleheader) between October 3-5.

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