SEATTLE (AP) — Abraham Toro hit a tying homer in the ninth inning, Ty France singled home the winning run in the 10th and the Seattle Mariners beat the Tampa Bay Rays 2-1 on Sunday to snap a six-game losing streak.
“We can definitely catch our breath now,” France said. “It’s been a rough week.”
Manuel Margot hit his third home run of the series for the Rays, who had won six straight overall and eight in a row on the road.
Tampa Bay appeared headed to a four-game sweep before Toro connected off Andrew Kittredge with one out in the bottom of the ninth for his fourth home run. Kittredge was trying for a two-inning save.
In the 10th, Rays manager Kevin Cash chose to intentionally walk Adam Frazier with one out. France singled to left field off Matt Wisler (1-1), scoring automatic runner Jarred Kelenic with the winning run.
France has been one of the best hitters in baseball this season, batting .319 with 22 RBIs.
“I’ll be honest, I thought they were going to load the bases,” France said. “I wasn’t expecting them to walk Fraz to start. But after that, I thought they’re going to load the bases, and it’s a good thing they didn’t.”
Paul Sewald (1-1) struck out pinch-hitter Yandy Diaz with two on to end the top of the 10th.
Prized prospect George Kirby pitched six shutout innings in his major league debut for the Mariners, who had lost 10 of 11.
The 24-year-old Kirby, a first-round draft pick out of Elon, struck out three of his first four batters after being called up from Double-A Arkansas. He allowed four hits and fanned seven with no walks on 81 pitches.
“It’s exactly what we needed,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “I really wasn’t expecting it. I didn’t know what we were going to get from a rookie in his first time…