The San Diego Padres, who have arguably been the biggest breakout surprise of the 2020 MLB season, punched their ticket to the postseason for the first time in 14 years on Sunday.
San Diego stormed to a 7-4 extra-inning victory over the Seattle Mariners in a matinee at Petco Park to move their record to 34-20 on the season and mathematically clinch a spot in the playoffs.
The Padres, who played the game as the “road” team thanks to an earlier postponement of a matchup between the two teams, fought back after Seattle tied them in the bottom of the 10th inning with a 3-run 11th inning to clinch their major achievement.
In this season’s expanded playoff format, the 2nd place team in each division qualifies for the playoffs, which has allowed the Padres to have already clinched a spot in the postseason despite trailing the Los Angeles Dodgers by 4 games for first place in the NL West.
The last time the Padres made the playoffs in 2006, they won the NL West before being eliminated by the St. Louis Cardinals in the divisional round of the playoffs.
This year, on the backs of star players like Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado, San Diego will look to make a deep run and bring home the franchise’s first-ever World Series trophy.