What threatened to be one of the Mariners’ most inexplicable losses of the season turned in an instant into one of their most improbable wins.

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What threatened to be one of the Mariners’ most inexplicable losses of the season turned in an instant into one of their most improbable wins.

Not that Adam Lind, whose three-run homer stunningly turned the tide the Mariners’ way in the bottom of the ninth inning Friday night, could make much more sense of the swift about-face than anyone else.

“I don’t know,’’ Lind said of his home run, which lifted the Mariners to a 4-3 win over the St. Louis Cardinals at Safeco Field. “I just swung, really, and hit it well.’’


Cardinals @ Mariners, 7:10 p.m., ROOT Sports

That he did, bringing home Kyle Seager, who had doubled to lead off the ninth and ended up making amends for an unlikely two-run error in the eighth that looked like it would doom the Mariners, and Dae-Ho Lee, who had walked on a full count.

And when Lind made it happily home he had also ended Seattle’s season-high six-game losing streak in the M’s first game at Safeco after a disastrous 2-8 road trip. It was the Mariners’ fourth walkoff home run this season, which leads the majors.

It also saved the Mariners from the ignominy of losing a game in which the Cardinals scored all of their runs in the eighth inning without getting a base hit.

“We needed that one,’’ said Mariner manager Scott Servais.

“We kept battling and a couple of guys got on and obviously the huge hit by Lind. Nice win. Certainly needed to break up that losing streak. That’s a good way to do it.’’

All of which helped erase the particularly bad manner in which the Mariners appeared to throw away an unexpectedly good start by Wade LeBlanc, a 31-year-old lefty making his first major-league appearance since Sept. 28, 2014, when he pitched at Safeco for the Angels.

LeBlanc, acquired earlier in the week from Toronto for a player to be named to shore up an injury-riddled Seattle rotation, allowed just three hits and no runs in six innings against a St. Louis team coming off a three-game sweep of a Chicago Cubs team that has the best record in baseball.

LeBlanc barely touches 90 mph with his fastball. But he kept the Cardinals off-balance with a steady stream of off-speed pitches that left Servais unable to resist comparing him to one of the Mariners’ all-time greats.

“He’s a pitcher and I think Mariner fans would have to throw maybe a Jamie Moyer out there tonight because that’s certainly what it looked like,’’ Servais said.

LeBlanc threw first-pitch strikes to 17 of 21 batters

“That’s definitely the goal,’’ said LeBlanc, now with his sixth major-league team. “You want to be aggressive and you want to stay aggressive and keep hitters on the defensive and make them swing at your pitches. But to do that you have to throw strikes.’’

LeBlanc left with a 1-0 lead after the Mariners scored in the sixth when Lee’s one-out high chopper to third scored a run with the bases loaded.

That was all the Mariners could get off St. Louis’ hard-throwing starter, Carlos Martinez, who was pretty much the opposite in style from LeBlanc, regularly hitting 99 mph.

After Nick Vincent pitched a scoreless seventh, Joaquin Benoit entered in the eighth and walked the first batter and then hit the next. After a sacrifice moved the runners to second and third, an intentional walk loaded the bases.

St. Louis shortstop Aledmys Diaz then walked on a full count, after fouling off three pitches, to tie the game.

That brought on Donn Roach, who immediately induced a potential double-play grounder from Matt Holliday.

But the usually sure-handed Seager appeared to misjudge the hop and the ball slipped under his glove for an error that brought home two runs.

In the ninth, Lind said he wanted to be patient and let Trevor Rosenthal throw a pitch or two.

But on a 1-1 count, Rosenthal lofted an 88 mph changeup that Lind hit 417 feet into the stands in right.

“Had a lot of tough ones lately,’’ Servais said. “It’s nice to flip it, and hopefully we can build on that.’’