Two former UNC players figured prominently in the first Major League Baseball regular-season game of 2012.
In Toyko, Japan early Wednesday morning, ex-Tar Heel Dustin Ackley led the Seattle Mariners to a 3-1, 11-inning win over the Oakland A’s.
Ackley, a second baseman, homered and then drove in the go-ahead run in the top of the 11th off former Tar Heel teammate Andrew Carignan, an A’s reliever.
More than 44,000 fans in the Toyko Dome watched the American League West Division game.
Carignan, 25, was picked by the A’s in the fifth round of the 2007 draft. As a rookie in 2011, he pitched in six games and had a 4.26 earned-run decision.
Ackley, 24, was the second overall pick in the 2009 and batted .273 in 90 games with the Mariners last season.
The two teams play again Thursday in Toyko.