SEATTLE -- Jean Segura scored the winning run on a wild pitch with two outs in the ninth inning, as the Mariners rallied past the A's for a 7-6 walk-off victory at Safeco Field on Saturday night."For me, the way Jean Segura played tonight, that's the Jean Segura we saw
SEATTLE -- Jean Segura scored the winning run on a wild pitch with two outs in the ninth inning, as the Mariners rallied past the A's for a 7-6 walk-off victory at Safeco Field on Saturday night.
"For me, the way Jean Segura played tonight, that's the Jean Segura we saw earlier in the year," Mariners manager Scott Servais said. "He was aggressive on the bases, was driving the ball, made great plays at shortstop. [He] was looking to score that winning run when the ball gets away from the catcher. That's the way he needs to play and we're a different ballclub when he plays that way. Outstanding game from him today."
Segura, who was 3-for-5 with two doubles and a home run, reached on a fielding error by Oakland first baseman Matt Olson to lead off the ninth, and Yonder Alonso followed with a single to right field. The A's elected to walk Robinson Cano to load the bases, and almost got out of it unscathed, before Blake Treinen's 0-1 slider to Mitch Haniger got under the legs of catcher Bruce Maxwell.
"I just didn't get my glove down in time," Maxwell said. "It's on me. [Treinen] executed, and I missed the ball to lose the game. That's how it works sometimes."
Seattle's Mike Zunino tied the game with a solo home run to right-center field in the eighth, as the Mariners (68-68) kept pace in the American League Wild Card chase, staying 3 1/2 games back of the Twins for the second spot.
The Mariners relied on the long ball, as Cano walloped a two-run homer in the third while Segura and Alonso slugged back-to-back homers in the fifth.
• Adaptable Joyce giving A's a lift
Maxwell and Khris Davis each launched solo home runs, and Matt Joyce joined the party with a three-run shot in the fourth to put A's up 5-2. Ryon Healy tacked on another run with a sacrifice fly to plate Jed Lowrie.
A's starting pitcher Jharel Cotton (5.53 ERA) allowed four runs over four innings on seven hits, including three homers. The Mariners' Yovani Gallardo (5.79 ERA) lasted only three innings, allowing two runs on five hits and two home runs.
"You want to go out there and put up zeros for your team to give them a chance to win," Cotton said. "Today I didn't do that, causing the bullpen to come in early."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Zunino stays hot: Zunino showcased his power in the eighth, launching an opposite-field home run to right-center field to tie the game at 6. It was the third homer in the last nine games for Zunino, who entered Saturday's contest hitting .393/.452/.714 since Aug. 22.
"I don't think he absolutely killed [it], but he does have some kind of power to the opposite field," Servais said. "He's back in a good groove again. Staying on balls, driving them to right-center. It's a special talent. It really is, and it's really fun to watch him play."
Marco is solid in relief: Seattle reliever Marco Gonzales was terrific in his first relief appearance since 2014, scattering two hits over four scoreless innings while striking out five. He lowered his ERA from 8.25 to 6.20 with the key long relief spell, which kept the A's at bay so the Mariners could rally back. It was his best outing since joining the Mariners in a trade from St. Louis last month.
"He was the biggest key today for me," Zunino said. "For him to give us those innings were huge. He kept us right in that ball game and gave our offense the time to chip at that lead." More >>
"To be honest, when [Segura's] going, him and [Ben] Gamel, we can do big things. When guys in the bottom part of the lineup like Zunino get going, like Gamel getting on base, that's when we start getting going." -- Cano on the importance of lengthening the lineup
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Cano's 21st homer of the season in the third was his first since July 22, a stretch that spanned 147 plate appearances.
A's: Right-hander Daniel Gossett gets the nod for Sunday's 1:10 p.m. PT series finale at Safeco Field. The rookie pitcher took a loss in Seattle on July 9, allowing three runs on five hits in 4 1/3 innings in his only career start against the Mariners.
Mariners: Southpaw Andrew Albers (2-1, 4.20 ERA) makes his fourth start for the Mariners this season. He allowed eight runs in his last start on Aug. 27, but only three were earned partly due to five errors committed by his defense in the first inning.
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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB.
Josh Horton is a reporter for MLB.com based in Seattle.