Bobby Witt Jr. comes through in the ninth as the Royals overcome an 8-0 deficit and surprise the Mariners

First, the Kansas City Royals were down 0-7 after the first inning, then 0-8 in the fourth inning.

Then they won.

More specifically, they beat the Seattle Mariners 10-9 on Friday night in one of the most exciting games of the season, building on their lead and finally breaking through with a walk-off fielder's choice in the ninth inning. Their record now stands at 38-26, just three games behind the AL Central-leading Cleveland Guardians.

The Mariners' points came in a first inning that was never going to end for Royals starter Daniel Lynch IV. A single by Julio Rodríguez and two hit-by-pitches loaded the bases with one out, then Lynch got Cal Raleigh on a flyout to left. He was one strike away from ending the inning unscathed, but Mitch Garver managed a walk to score the first run.

Mitch Haniger and Victor Robles each hit a double, then Ryan Bliss put the exclamation point on the board with a two-run homer. Three innings later, Ty France hit an RBI double to give Seattle an eight-run lead.

Kansas City responded with a comeback of its own in the fourth inning, scoring three runs, then three more in the sixth to make it 9-7. That set the Royals up for a ninth inning in which Nick Loftin and Garrett Hampson both reached base to lead off the bottom of the inning.

Keyword MVP candidate Bobby Witt Jr., who equalized with a high-speed triple.

The Mariners intentionally walked the next two batters to force out at home, nearly forcing overtime. Nelson Velázquez hit a double-play ball to shortstop that JP Crawford was just able to catch, but he stumbled as he attempted to throw the ball to second base.

The ball was there to get one out, but he got to first base too late. Win, Royals.

According to Sarah Langs of, it was only the fifth time in the last 50 seasons that a team won a game after trailing 7-0 or worse in the bottom of the first inning. No team had done that since Cleveland in 1995.

It was a well-deserved Gatorade shower for Witt.