SEATTLE (AP) — The Seattle Mariners’ quest to end their 20-year playoff drought fell short Sunday as they lost to the Los Angeles Angels 7-3 on the final day of the regular season.
Seattle’s late surge into contention was halted by Los Angeles, which took two of three in the series. The surprising Mariners needed a win plus a loss by either Boston or New York on the final day to force at least a tiebreaker game for one of the two wild-card spots in the American League.READ MORE: Burbank Vigil Planned For Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins Killed On Movie Set
But both the Yankees and Red Sox scored in the ninth inning to win and clinch postseason spots, rendering Seattle’s result meaningless.
Shohei Ohtani led off the game with his 46th home run of the season for the Angels and Jared Walsh added a two-run shot with two outs in the fourth that left the more than 44,000 in attendance sitting in nervous silence for most of the day.
Seattle’s 20-year absence from the postseason is the longest in any of the four major pro sports in North America. The Mariners had won 10 of 11 coming into the final series against the Angels, and combined with stumbles by the Yankees and Red Sox, provided hope going into the final three days of at the very least extending the season to a 163rd game.
Seattle dropped the opener to the Angels 2-1 and rallied for a 6-4 win on Saturday night to keep its hopes alive to the final day.
But game No. 162 is as far as the Mariners got, although there is optimism the young core that arrived this season can carry Seattle into regular contention in the future. The Mariners finished 90-72, their best record since winning 93 games in 2003.READ MORE: Walker Buehler To Pitch As Dodgers Again Seek To Avoid Elimination
The Angels finished the season 77-85 and in fourth place in the AL West for the fourth straight season.
Seattle starter Tyler Anderson (7-11) wasn’t good from the outset, making his third start in eight days. Anderson was battered for nine runs in two innings barely a week earlier by the Angels. He made a spot start last Tuesday against Oakland, allowing one run in four innings.
But the crispness he showed against the A’s was absent again. Ohtani homered on the third pitch of the game. Two walks, two hits — including an RBI double from David Fletcher — and a sacrifice fly ended Anderson’s day after just five outs.
Left-hander Anthony Misciewicz failed to get through the fourth, giving up a two-out hit to Phil Gosselin and Walsh’s 29th homer of the season to give the Angels a 6-2 lead.
While pitching was a problem, Seattle also missed chances at the plate. The Mariners left runners in scoring position in the first, third and most damaging the fourth inning when Seattle had runners at second and third and one out and failed to score. J.P. Crawford struck out and Ty France fouled out.MORE NEWS: Rain Expected Sunday Night Into Monday In Southland
Seattle also loaded the bases with one out in the sixth inning, but managed just one run.