Not only did Paredes believe he had hit a walk-off homer in the ninth, but so did the Detroit bullpen as his drive to left field headed that way. Fraley not only brought it back with a leaping catch, his arm extended well over the fence, he started an inning-ending double play to continue the game for his 11th-inning go-ahead single in a 9-6 Tigers loss at Comerica Park.
The look of Paredes behind first base, hunched over in disbelief, summed up Detroit’s night.
“What a great play,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “We saw a lot of great plays in the outfield. ... There was a lot to digest in that game, but that was an emotional turn of events when you think the game's over and it turns out to be a double play, and you've gotta still play. But yeah, that was a frustrating turn of events.”
Fraley’s catch was one of four highlight grabs in the game, one of them from Tigers center fielder Derek Hill, who sprained his right shoulder crashing into the wall to take a hit away from Kyle Seager. Likewise, Paredes’ drive was one of two would-be walk-off homers for the Tigers, who watched Akil Baddoo’s 10th-inning drive to right hook foul before Paredes scored on a wild pitch to tie the game again.
Fraley and Dillon Thomas hit RBI singles off Daniel Norris to pull the Mariners in front for good before Tom Murphy’s two-run double put the game out of reach. By the time Baddoo made an over-the-shoulder catch on a Mitch Haniger line drive to straightaway center, Seattle had a five-run lead.
Robbie Grossman hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the 11th.
It was a crazy ending to what looked like a pitching duel early. Tigers starter Casey Mize held the Mariners to one hit over his first five innings, reprising his nasty form from his win last month in Seattle, before his third trip through the order changed the plot. Three consecutive hits to begin the sixth inning culminated in Seager’s game-tying three-run homer, a towering, Statcast-projected 426-foot drive to right.
“Didn’t have obviously my best stuff,” Mize said, “but went with what I had. We played some great defense behind me. Jake was really good behind the plate. Offense drove in three runs. That should’ve been enough, but obviously it wasn’t.”
Seager’s eighth career homer at Comerica Park erased a three-run Tigers lead built from the bottom of the lineup. Rogers walked and scored on a Jonathan Schoop sacrifice fly in the third inning before hitting a Statcast-projected 423-foot homer over the out-of-town scoreboard in right-center field in the fifth, his second home run of the season. Baddoo followed with a ground-rule double to right-center before scoring on Grossman’s single.