SEATTLE — Mitch Haniger drove in five runs and his two-out, two-run single in the eighth inning gave Seattle the lead as the Mariners took their playoff hopes to the final day of the regular season with a 6-4 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night.
With Seattle’s season on the line, Haniger had an RBI single in the third inning, clubbed his 39th homer in the fifth and came through with the bases loaded in the eighth after Seattle blew a 3-1 lead.
Seattle won’t be able to claim one of two AL wild-card spots on the final day of the regular season, but it made game No. 162 matter, which hasn’t been said often during Seattle’s 20-year postseason drought.
The Mariners and Toronto enter the final day tied at 90-71, both trailing Boston and the New York Yankees by one game for the two wild cards. Seattle could find itself in one of several Monday tiebreaker scenarios if it beats the Angels on Sunday and either Boston or New York loses.
Seattle almost didn’t get to the last day.
Steve Cishek (0-2) couldn’t find the plate in the eighth. The right-hander hit Jarred Kelenic and walked Jake Bauers to open the inning. Jake Fraley’s sacrifice bunt advanced the runners, and J.P. Crawford was intentionally walked.
Kelenic was forced out at home on Ty France’s chopper to third, but Haniger delivered with a line drive to left on a 3-2 pitch, scoring Bauers and Crawford. The normally even-keeled Haniger pumped his arms as he rounded first base, and the more than 44,000 in attendance had T-Mobile Park shaking.
Kyle Seager dropped a single into center field to score France and give Seattle some cushion.
Drew Steckenrider pitched the ninth for his 14th save.
Jared Walsh hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning off reliever Paul Sewald to give the Angels a 4-3 lead. Sewald (10-3) had been brilliant all season for Seattle but opened the inning by walking Brandon Marsh and Shohei Ohtani on 3-2 pitches.
After a strikeout, Sewald left his first-pitch fastball in the middle of the plate and Walsh deposited it to deep right-center field for his 28th homer and silenced the crowd. It was the 10th homer allowed this season by Sewald.