The Rainiers lost their third straight game in Fresno on Friday night by a score of 9-3. And I’m blaming the losing streak on too much sleep.
No problem though – after three straight nights of 10+ hours of sleep for anyone who wanted it in Fresno, we’re rejoining what I like to call the No Sleep League.
Friday’s loss ended around 10:00, and most players were back at the hotel around 11:15 or so. The team then had 3:45 AM wake-up calls, for the 4:30 am bus to the airport and the flight back to Tacoma. Flying commercial, there is only one flight a day from Fresno to SeaTac that will get us home in time for the game, so we gotta take it – no matter how inconvenient it is.
We did arrive early enough this morning for the boys to get some nap-time in before tonight’s game, so that’s good.
So the Rainiers had virtually no sleep last night, play a night game tonight, and then a day game tomorrow – that’s another short-sleep night. After a good night’s sleep Sunday night with a night game on Monday, the Rainiers play at 11:30 AM on Tuesday – another short-sleep night - and then, after Tuesday’s day game, take a red-eye overnight flight to Iowa to start an eight-game road trip.
This is going to be a bleary-eyed group by the time we get to Des Moines.
But in the PCL, it’s all about overcoming obstacles – and the Rainiers have plenty of obstacles to choose from right now. Three-game losing streak? Check. Dwindling lead in the standings? Check. Two starting pitchers lost from the rotation? Check. Key players battling injuries? Check. Kid from rookie ball starting a game in a Triple-A pennant race? Check.
Yup, that’s right. Ryan Feierabend was supposed to pitch tonight, but he hit the disabled list with a strained muscle in his rib cage. So instead we are going to start 21-year-old Yoervis Medina, whom you might know was the opening day starter for your Everett Aqua Sox. Yes, your short-season rookie-ball Everett Aqua Sox - four steps below Triple-A on the minor league ladder.
Now, reports are that Medina has good stuff. He’s 3-2 with a 4.20 ERA for Everett, and with 48 strikeouts and 15 walks in 40.2 innings. But this is Triple-A – it would be a shock if he has a successful outing here.
Medina is going to make this one fill-in start and then presumably return to Everett. The Mariners will make all of the appropriate moves to solidify the Rainiers starting rotation – they were just caught in a bind for this one game due to the unexpected injury, and the kid is gonna fill in. Hopefully Medina will throw strikes and survive for four or five innings.
Tonight’s game is at 7:00, and it’s the opener of a four-game home stand. Reno is scheduled to start RHP Kevin Mulvey (5-6, 5.11). Mulvey beat the Rainiers with an excellent outing after the all-star break. It’s a TV game on Comcast Sportsnet Northwest – channel 179 on most Comcast Digital systems. The simulcast will air on 850 AM and stream via www.tacomarainiers.com. Bucky Jacobsen will be joining me in the booth.
ROSTER UPDATE: Here are all of the moves today. Tacoma was two players under the max before today, because of French’s call-up and Feierabend’s move to the disabled list.
- Called up to Seattle: Matt Tuiasosopo and Sean White
- Optioned to Tacoma from Seattle: Justin Smoak
- Promoted to Tacoma from AA-West Tenn: Blake Beavan and Josh Lueke
- Promoted to Tacoma from Short Season-Everett: Yoervis Medina
That fills Tacoma’s roster at 24 men. The starting rotation for the homestand is today: Medina, Sunday: Petit, Monday: Pineda, Tuesday: Beavan.
Let’s hit the links!
- Here is my Rainiers game story from last night’s 9-3 loss. The Rainiers are 18-9 in July. Here are some notes from the Fresno perspective.
- Larry LaRue gives a little taste of what its like to be a player at the trade deadline – using Luke French as an example.
- The Mariners are making costly defensive mistakes.
- Former Rainiers catcher Jim Horner resigned as manager of the Mariners Class-A High Desert affiliate, accepting a job at Texas Tech University. Horner made the move for his family.
- Dave Cameron says don’t give up on Justin Smoak.
- I can’t even begin to cover all of the deadline trades here; but if you want a one-stop shop with analysis this is a great place to go. Also, CBS Sportsline is my favorite one-page MLB scoreboard, and their transaction list is usually more current than ESPN and others. Hey check it out now – Jeff Clement got recalled by Pittsburgh!
- Round Rock released former Rainiers slugger Tommy Everidge. He certainly had a strange season.
- On the field in the PCL, Salt Lake missed an opportunity to gain a game on the Rainiers. Tacoma still has a five-game lead.
- Fresno still leads Sacramento by one game in the South. The Grizzlies are serious about winning. Josh Donaldson homered for Sacramento, keeping up the pressure.
- Current Tacoma opponent Reno lost at home to Las Vegas last night, 12-9. Vegas scored nine runs in one inning, and JP Arencibia hit his 30th home run.
Apparently my post about sleeping in Fresno got the attention of a Fresnan. Fun stuff! I like Fresno, and I like sleeping – I’m well rested right now, thank you!