Here we are – Tacoma would win a PCL championship on the field for the first time since 1969 with a victory tonight in Memphis.
Tacoma, which was named PCL co-champion in 2001 and 1978, leads the best-of-five series 2-0.
Tonight’s game is at 5:05 Pacific time, and it will be back to normal here in Memphis. The Rainiers are no longer acting as the home team – they will wear their road uniforms, and bat first. The Redbirds expect a better crowd tonight, as this is the game they have been actively promoting – knowing that they would play it all along; regardless of the opponent.
Tacoma starts RHP Yusmeiro Petit (4-2, 4.85). Petit has surged in September – his final start of the regular season was Sept 5 at Fresno, when he tossed seven scoreless innings and earned the win in the division-clinching game for the Rainiers. Petit then had a solid start at Safeco Field in Game Four against Sacramento on Sept 11, allowing just two runs over 5.2 innings but taking the loss. The way the Rainiers have been hitting in this series, if Petit pitches as well as he did at Safeco, we should be in good shape.
RHP P.J. Walters (8-5, 3.81) takes the mound for Memphis. The 25-year-old pitched seven shutout innings against Tacoma on May 16 in his only start against the Rainiers this year. Walters has been called up by the Cardinals twice this season, and may go up again after this series. He picked up his first big league win at San Diego on May 27. Walters is an excellent starter at the Triple-A level who, with a break or two, could end up at the back-end of a major league starting rotation.
It should be a good match-up. The broadcast starts at 4:50 pm with the pre-game show, and it will air live on South Sound Sports 850 AM and stream via www.tacomarainiers.com.
Don’t forget that if the Rainiers win today, they aren’t done yet: the Triple-A Championship Game is Tuesday in Oklahoma City, against the International League champion. But this is the big one – the PCL championship is what everybody is gunning for.
And today’s links:
- The Rainiers didn’t have to travel on the built-in travel day, so everybody had a day of rest in Memphis. The News Tribune investigated. In case you’re curious from yesterday’s post, I decided to do: book –> touristy dinner.
- The Memphis Commercial-Appeal wrote the off-day story on a player we haven’t seen yet, and hopefully will not see in this series: Redbirds closer Josh Kinney. As you can see from the photo, Kinney graduated with honors from the Ryan Franklin School Of Beard Development.
- In the International League, Durham avoided a sweep and beat Columbus last night, 3-2. Columbus leads the best-of-five series, 2-1.
- The Mariners Low-A Clinton affiliate is in the Midwest League championship series. They tied up the series, 1-1, by winning an epic struggle in the 18th inning, 8-7. The game clocked in at 5 hours, 37 minutes – not bad for 18 innings!
- The Seattle Times ran a hefty story on Ichiro and his final approach towards hit #200.
- My beloved Cal Bears are playing a trap game tonight on national TV. This has a chance to be miserable.
Let’s finish this thing off tonight!