Rise And Shine!

May 13, 2014

On Tuesday morning for the first time ever the Rainiers are the opponent for the Las Vegas 51s 11th Annual School Day Game.

That means morning baseball.

First pitch is set for 10:35 AM, so this will be a short post and there will be no links today.

On Monday night the Rainiers played their worst defensive game of the season, making four errors on the way to a 9-4 loss.

That loss means Tacoma needs a win today in order to get back to even on this trip. Tacoma is 3-4 so far on this season-long 12-game road trip.

Tuesday’s game starts at 10:35 AM – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 10:20 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Matt Palmer (first appearance of season) against Las Vegas RHP Logan Verret (2-2, 4.58).

Palmer suffered a sore shoulder in spring training and has been rehabilitating in Arizona. The Rainiers will need to make a roster move this morning in order to activate him. Palmer will be on a pitch count, and the Rainiers have Chance Ruffin prepared to follow him.

The team has its May off-day on Wednesday, and this blog is taking the day off, too. Next update comes Thursday from Sacramento.


Anything Else Happen?

May 12, 2014

Tacoma picked up a win and a loss on Sunday afternoon in Las Vegas. They won the suspended game 6-5 on Jesus Montero‘s game-winning hit with two outs in the ninth, and then dropped the regularly scheduled game 8-3 in one of the weirdest ballgames I’ve ever seen.

These things happened in the 8-3 game:

  • Jordan Pries carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning but was lifted after reaching 102 pitches.
  • It was a 0-0 game in the 6th inning at hitter’s paradise Cashman Field.
  • Vegas broke the scoreless tie by scoring eight runs in the sixth inning against the Tacoma bullpen.
  • Endy Chavez – who we can all agree is an excellent defensive outfielder – lost two routine fly balls in the sun during the eight-run rally.
  • The Rainiers were called for batting out-of-order, making a mess of the box score (not to mention my scoresheet).
  • When it was all over, Las Vegas’s least-effective pitcher (Ryan Reid) earned the win, and Tacoma’s most-effective pitcher (Pries) was charged with the loss.

Just another Sunday afternoon in Vegas, eh?

The batting out-of-order was a result of a discrepancy between the lineup card exchanged at home plate, and the one hanging on the Rainiers dugout wall.

The dugout had Leury Bonilla hitting eighth and Abraham Almonte ninth, and the plate umpire’s card had them flip-flopped.

Vegas manager Wally Backman waited until the seventh inning to point it out. When Almonte walked to lead off the inning, he notified the umpires. The umpires sent Almonte back to the dugout for batting out-of-order, and called out the batter who should have followed Bonilla (leadoff man Xavier Avery).

This was the first time Tacoma has batted out-of-order in my time with the club (16 seasons ugh I’m old). We saw an opponent do it once: Daren Brown called out Tony DeFrancesco‘s Oklahoma City club for batting out-of-order a few years ago – something Daren enjoyed immensely.

Sometimes it is best to have simple goals, so for today let’s see if the Rainiers can bat in order.

Monday’s game starts at 7:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 6:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Erasmo Ramirez (0-0, 1.59) against Las Vegas RHP Jacob deGrom  (4-0, 2.58).

Links:

On Tuesday we have a 10:30 AM game – it is Las Vegas’s 11th Annual School Day Game. Due to the early start, Tuesday’s blog will be very brief. Fellow PCL radio guys, please plan accordingly.


Reno Salvages Split

May 10, 2014

The Reno Aces managed to avoid their first-ever home series loss to Tacoma by winning the final two games, including an 11-7 decision on Friday night.

Tacoma had some untimely errors which led to runs, and while the offense did produce it wasn’t enough to claim a victory.

So the Rainiers went 2-2 in Reno – certainly not a bad result, but a little disappointing after Tacoma won the first two games of the series.

Now we move on to Stage 2 of the Rainiers longest road trip of the season: yet another series with Las Vegas.

By the time this series in Vegas ends, Tacoma will have played Las Vegas 11 times in the last 19 games. It was supposed to be 12 out of 20, but one game in Tacoma was rained out and rescheduled for later in the season.

Las Vegas just swept a road series at Salt Lake, and their record of 25-10 is the best in all of Triple-A baseball. The Rainiers have played them tough, though: Tacoma is 3-4 against Las Vegas so far this season.

Saturday’s game starts at 7:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 6:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Andrew Carraway (2-1, 3.38) against Las Vegas RHP Noah Syndergaard (4-2, 3.58).

Links:

That’s it for today – it’s a travel day, gotta shut down the computer and keep moving.


Rainiers Need Win – Iwakuma Pitches Today

April 27, 2014

Tacoma is one loss away from being swept in Las Vegas, so why not turn to a rehabilitating major leaguer who took third place in the American League Cy Young Award voting to try to get a win.

Hisashi Iwakuma makes a rehabilitation start for Tacoma today in Las Vegas. Iwakuma went 14-6 with a 2.66 ERA for the Mariners in 2014 and placed third in the Cy Young voting behind Yu Darvish and winner Max Scherzer.

Iwakuma has been out of action since early spring training with a tendon strain in the middle finger of his throwing hand. He pitched a simulated game at Safeco Field on Tuesday and should be ready to throw somewhere between 70 and 80 pitches today.

The Rainiers need him. Tacoma lost its third in a row on Saturday night, dropping an 11-3 decision to the best team in the PCL (Las Vegas is now 18-5 on the year). The Rainiers fell to 10-10.

Walks were the big issue on Saturday. Rainiers pitchers issued eight walks, and four of them came around to score runs. Another one occurred with the bases loaded, forcing in a run.

The Rainiers three hot hitters kept it going: Jesus Montero was 2-for-4, extending his hitting streak to ten games. Chris Taylor had another multiple-hit game, going 3-for-5. He’s 15-for-31 during a seven-game stretch. Gabriel Noriega hit a pair of doubles, and he now has a seven-game hitting streak.

Sunday’s game starts at 12:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 11:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Hisashi Iwakuma (Triple-A debut) against Las Vegas RHP Logan Verrett (1-1, 4.67).

Links:

  • We’ll start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune. Apparently manager Roy Howell was not pleased by the microscopic strike zone of rookie PCL umpire Brendon Henson.
  • My minor league notebook for the TNT has items on Chris Taylor and Carlos Peguero.
  • The Mariners lost to Texas on Saturday evening, 6-3.
  • Bob Dutton has a lot of good stuff in his Mariners notebook.
  • Ryan Divish’s Sunday baseball pieces for the Seattle Times include a column about the end of the month-long transfer rule problem in MLB, plus some power rankings.
  • Adam Jude wrote an interesting story on the sites of Seattle’s old sports stadiums.
  • In the PCL, Albuquerque tossed a rare double-shutout in a doubleheader sweep at Fresno. They won 2-0 and 1-0. Matt Magill and Stephen Fife made the starts. Fresno had five hits – total, in the two games. Yikes!
  • Reno prospect Archie Bradley had a rough night and the Aces lost to Salt Lake, 8-5. I’m going to try one of Reno’s local sausages when we go there this year.
  • Marcus Walden and the Sacramento bullpen shut down El Paso in front of a sellout crowd, 2-1. Former Japanese league star Leon Lee is having a ball with Johnny Doskow on River Cats radio broadcasts.
  • Washington State Cougars product Adam Conley tossed seven shutout innings in a 3-0 New Orleans win over Omaha.
  • Round Rock’s Nick Tepesch tossed a complete game five-hit shutout against Nashville. It was the first nine-inning shutout of the season in the PCL.
  • Iowa Cubs second baseman Arismendy Alcantara had five hits in a 13-inning, 9-6 win at Colorado Springs. The Sky Sox, by the way, are amused by the Michael Pineda pine tar incident.
  • Nashville hit three homers and beat Oklahoma City, 6-3. No link because The Daily Oklahoman‘s website seems to be down.

Vegas Squeaks Out Win

April 26, 2014

The Las Vegas 51s made it two straight wins against Tacoma, hanging on for a 7-6 victory on Friday night.

The game was notable for the wind: it was gusting up to 50 miles per hour to straight-away center field.

This made every ball hit in the air an adventure. Many of the hits and runs came as a result of fly balls that would normally be outs. I actually expected the game to be much higher-scoring, considering the conditions.

Supposedly the wind will die down tonight (in fact, the “strong wind advisory” was expected to be called off at 11:00 last night). On the other hand, the temperature is expected to drop into the 50s tonight – you should see these Las Vegans freak out about the “cold,” it’s hilarious!

Jesus Montero continues to swing a hot bat. He went 2-for-4 with an opposite field (and wind-aided; everything was wind-aided last night) home run off top prospect Noah Syndergaard. Montero has a nine-game hitting streak, and he has homered in his last three games.

Montero is also starting to look a little more fluid at first base. Still a long way to go, definitely, but you can see some progress.

Saturday’s game starts at 7:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 6:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Chance Ruffin (0-1, 6.08) against Las Vegas RHP Jacob deGrom (2-0, 1.57).

Links:

  • Manager Roy Howell talked about the conditions in the Rainiers game story.
  • Justin Smoak saved the day with a clutch hit and a game-saving defensive play in the Mariners win over Texas on Friday night.
  • Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook includes an item on Cole Gillespie‘s call-up.
  • In the PCL, rain hit the Pacific Conference. Salt Lake picked up a 7-1 win at Reno in a game rain-shortened to six innings.
  • Fresno’s home game against Albuquerque was rained out. The Grizzlies signed Federal Way’s Travis Ishikawa.
  • Sacramento waited out the rain before putting a 14-5 beating on El Paso. Outfielder Jeff Francouer pitched another scoreless inning for the Chihuahuas – he’s pitched three times this week!
  • Mike Fiers tossed another gem and Nashville beat Oklahoma City, 5-3. Fiers is 4-0 with a 1.01 ERA and 36 strikeouts in 26.2 innings.
  • Good news from Oklahoma City, where they think manager Tony DeFrancesco may be able to return to the team in a month or so. He’s been battling cancer.
  • Memphis shut out Round Rock, 8-0. The Austin paper has a story on the loaded Memphis outfield.
  • New Orleans has been scoring a lot of runs this week, and they trounced Omaha 10-5 on Friday. Carlos Peguero hit two dingers for Omaha.
  • Chris Rusin had his best start of the season and Iowa picked up a 9-2 win at Colorado Springs.

Tacoma has dropped two in a row, and Las Vegas has won five in a row. Let’s see if both streaks can end tonight.


Rough Start To Vegas Trip

April 25, 2014

The Rainiers lost the first game of the eight-game road trip on Thursday night, dropping an 11-4 decision to the Las Vegas 51s.

It was just the third loss in the last 11 games for Tacoma – the Rainiers record is now 10-8. Meanwhile, Las Vegas improved its record to a PCL-best 16-5. That’s the best 21-game start in Las Vegas franchise history.

The game got away from the Rainiers in the bottom of the fifth inning. Already trailing 2-0, Tacoma allowed four unearned runs due to two infield errors, making it 6-0.

Jesus Montero pulled a long three-run homer in the sixth to make it 6-3, but Vegas kept tacking on runs and the Rainiers did not threaten again.

Tacoma looks to get even tonight in what should be an entertaining pitching match-up: Jordan Pries tossed six shutout innings and allowed one hit in his Triple-A debut on Sunday, and Noah Syndergaard is ranked by pretty much every outlet as the top pitching prospect in the PCL right now.

Friday’s game starts at 7:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 6:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Jordan Pries (0-0, 0.00) against Las Vegas RHP Noah Syndergaard (2-2, 4.95).

Links:


It Won’t Rain In Vegas, Right?

April 24, 2014

Right? It can’t possibly rain here, can it?

The team has arrived in Las Vegas and we are ready to begin the Tacoma Rainiers first multiple-city road trip of 2014. Four games in Vegas, followed by four games in Sacramento, and hopefully not a single rain drop in either place.

The Rainiers are coming in hot, having won eight of the last ten games. It’s a good thing, too, because Vegas has been the best team in the PCL over the first three weeks of the season.

Las Vegas is 15-5, and they are doing it with the perfect combination: good pitching and good hitting. The 51s lead the league in runs scored, and they rank seventh in team ERA (which is really good considering that their home ballpark is a launching pad).

The Rainiers are set to face the two top prospects in the Las Vegas rotation right away: Rafael Montero tonight, and Noah Syndergaard tomorrow.

Wally Backman remains at the helm of the New York Mets Triple-A affiliate. He’s had big offensive production from Triple-A rookie Allan Dykstra (no relation to Lenny, batting .419-3-18 in 16 games) and returning super-utility guy Eric Campbell (.346-3-18 in 19 games).

Las Vegas scored 21 runs on Tuesday against El Paso. They were off Wednesday like everyone else in the league, so hopefully that massive outburst followed by the 24-hour break will serve to cool off their bats somewhat.

We had some roster moves today: The Mariners optioned Nick Franklin to Tacoma, and called up Cole Gillespie. It sounds like the organization wants Franklin to play every day, and an older player like Gillespie may be better suited for a part-time role with the big league club.

Also, starting pitcher James Gillheeney was transferred to Double-A Jackson, and reliever Nick Hill was activated from the disabled list. With Hisashi Iwakuma scheduled to start Sunday, and Erasmo Ramirez figuring to make a start next week, the team sent Gillheeney to AA so he could make his starts.

Thursday’s game starts at 7:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 6:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Andrew Carraway (1-0, 5.91) against Las Vegas RHP Rafael Montero (2-0, 3.80).

Links:

That’s all the links I have time for today – we didn’t get into the hotel until 2:00, and I need to make my way to the ballpark.


Junior Watches Rainiers Win

June 11, 2013

Ken Griffey Jr showed up to watch the Rainiers play in Las Vegas on Monday, and the Rainiers stepped up and beat the 51s, 10-7.

Griffey is a special assistant for the Mariners, something he has done for two seasons. There have been reports that he has visited all of the Mariners other farm teams, but this was the first time I’ve ever seen him at a Rainiers game.

Part of being Junior, I imagine, is dealing with crowds. In Las Vegas, he sat with Roger Hansen in the air conditioned club level restaurant behind home plate.

Yesterday Carlos Peguero had a big game, collecting three hits with a homer and five RBI. He had been struggling and needed a breakout like that.

Tacoma is now 13 games over .500 again, tying the season high-water mark. Maybe today is the day they reach 14 games over.

Tonight’s game is at 7:05, and you can hear it on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here (hopefully – the stream has been broken the last two days; the proper authorities have been notified). Tacoma starts RHP Brian Sweeney (7-1, 3.51) against Las Vegas RHP Collin McHugh (3-2, 2.74).

Links:

  • We start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune.
  • Larry Stone reports that Mike Zunino is getting called up by Seattle today. The analysis of the move from blogs like USS Mariner and Lookout Landing seems spot-on. Jason Churchill has a reasonable look at the situation, as well.
  • No link, but former Rainiers lefty Anthony Vasquez made his return from emergency brain surgery and pitched for Class-A Clinton yesterday. Great news!
  • The Mariners held on for a 3-2 win over the Houston Astros.
  • Looks like both Justin Smoak and Franklin Gutierrez could begin rehabilitation assignments soon.
  • Double-A Jackson won the first game of a doubleheader with a walk-off triple play. That’s right: Jackson led 5-4, Chattanooga had runners at first and second with no outs in the ninth. Low liner to shortstop Gabriel Noriega, he catches it at his shoes, doubles the runner of second, throws to first to catch that runner for the third out.
  • In the PCL, Salt Lake topped the Sky Sox, 8-6, widening Tacoma’s lead in the division to 3.5 games.
  • Sacramento beat Reno, 5-2, as the bizarre string of low-scoring games at Aces Ballpark continued.
  • Nick Noonan went down to Fresno and helped the Grizzlies paste Tucson, 10-1.
  • How about this: former Rainiers lefty Ryan Feierabend tossed a complete game eight-hitter as his Round Rock Express beat Albuquerque, 5-2.
  • Another hot former Rainiers player is Brad Nelson. The Iowa Cubs first baseman had his second straight game with two homers in Round Rock last night.
  • Perfect game guy Phillip Humber is struggling in the PCL.
  • Brett Hayes hit two dingers to help Omaha defeat Nashville, 10-7.
  • New Orleans picked up a pair of wins in Memphis yesterday.
  • I really enjoyed the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s response to the Wall Street Journal’s hatchet job on Cashman Field.

Carraway Deals In Vegas

April 27, 2013

Andrew Carraway turned in a brilliant outing on Friday night in Las Vegas, carrying a no-hitter into the seventh inning in the Rainiers 10-1 victory.

Vegas No. 3 hitter Josh Satin broke up the no-no with one out in the seventh, singling cleanly through the left side of the infield. Carraway had to settle for seven shutout innings, while earning his third straight win. Carraway is now 3-1 with a 3.38 ERA on the year.

Meanwhile, the Rainiers hitters continue to sting the ball.

Rich Poythress returned to the lineup after missing eight games due to a bruised rib. He made an immediate impact, going 4-for-5 with two doubles and five RBI.

Tacoma had 15 hits while scoring double-digit runs for the fourth time in the last six games. It should be noted, however, that this is a Hitter’s Coast League road trip running through Salt Lake City and Vegas.

Cashman Field in Vegas in particular is a launching pad – which makes Carraway’s outing even more impressive.

Despite the current hitting conditions, Tacoma has played only six of its 22 games so far in hitter’s parks. Tacoma ranks second among the 16 PCL teams with 140 runs scored – an average of 6.36 runs scored per game.

The offense got a little bit better yesterday when Michael Saunders joined the team for a rehabilitation stint. Saunders had six plate appearances yesterday, going 0-for-3 with a walk, a sac fly, and a hit-by-pitch. The HBP was almost comically awful: he got drilled in the right shoulder, exactly where he was injured when he crashed into the outfield fence back on April 10. After the game, Saunders said he was fine and it was no big deal.

Saunders is scheduled to be here for the rest of this weekend only – but, if he is not deemed ready for the Mariners on Monday, he could continue his rehab with the Rainiers on the homestand starting Monday. This seems a bit unlikely; everyone is hoping he’s ready to return to Seattle that day.

The Rainiers also added a relief pitcher yesterday, filling the roster at 25. Right-hander Tyler Burgoon is up from Double-A Jackson, where he posted a 1.04 ERA in six appearances. Burgoon had 14 strikeouts in 8.2 innings pitched.

Today the Rainiers shoot for their fourth straight win, which will be a season-high if they get it. Game time is 7:05, the broadcast is on 850 AM and streaming right here, and RHP Jeremy Bonderman (0-2, 5.06) faces RHP Collin McHugh (2-0, 1.93).

Links

  • We start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune.
  • The news on Danny Hultzen was not bad: he has a rotator cuff strain, and will not throw for two weeks before dialing it up once again.
  • The Angels jumped all over Aaron Harang and the Mariners on Friday night.
  • It’s kind of cool that the Rainiers game Thursday turned up as part of a story in the New York Daily News – an article about Zack Wheeler dealing with the PCL.
  • In the PCL, Cole Gillespie returned to his old stomping grounds and helped his Fresno Grizzlies defeat Reno, 9-8.
  • A rehabbing Yoenis Cespedes crushed a three-run homer and Sacramento downed Salt Lake, 10-1.
  • Colorado Springs shut out Tucson, 3-0, The Sky Sox lead the Pac-North with a 12-7 record.
  • Johnny Giavotella had the game winning hit as Omaha beat Iowa in the tenth inning. Omaha manager Mike Jirschele missed it – he was ejected earlier.
  • Former major league reliever Josh Lindblom worked into the seventh inning of Round Rock’s 4-3 win over Albuquerque. He’s 3-0 with a 1.90 ERA; this conversion looks good so far.
  • Weird things happened in Nashville. Nothing is more exciting than a walk-off balk!

Seriously. A walk-off balk.


Wild Night In Vegas

April 26, 2013

Somebody could write a book about last night’s game in Las Vegas. I don’t have time to write a book, so let’s just hit a few highlights.

First of all, our expected pitching prospect showdown between Danny Hultzen and Zack Wheeler fizzled out before the game even started.

Hultzen had trouble loosening up his throwing arm during his pregame warm-up routine, so the Rainiers scratched him for precautionary measures. At this time we have no further information regarding his condition and when he may pitch again, but you can bet that the Mariners/Rainiers are going to proceed very cautiously moving forward.

The timing on Hultzen’s scratch was literally right before the first pitch. I had finished my pre-game show, and we were in the commercial break before the game start when everyone in the press box noticed that Andrew Kittredge was loosing up in the bullpen instead.

Pressed into last-second emergency duty for his first Triple-A start, Kittredge struggled out of the gate and the Rainiers were down 7-1 after three innings.

Meanwhile, Wheeler was dealing. After allowing doubles to the first two batters of the game, Wheeler retired 12 of the next 13 and had five strikeouts in four innings.

Wheeler is legit, you guys. He was 96-98 miles per hour all night, and it is the easiest 96-98 I think I’ve ever seen – it looks effortless, he just casually goes into his throwing motion and wham! 97 at the knees.

However, Wheeler is in the minors for a reason, and we saw why in the fifth inning. He started to lose his command, and Tacoma put three runs on the board in the fifth, and when Stefen Romero greeted him in the sixth with a long home run (Romero’s first Triple-A dinger), that was it for Wheeler.

Tacoma’s bullpen kept the Rainiers in the game, but the defense made a comeback difficult. The Rainiers committed five errors, leading to four unearned runs.

Las Vegas carried a 10-6 lead into the ninth inning – and that’s when things got crazy. Three straight singles to open the inning loaded the bases. Then Vegas reliever Greg Peavey (Vancouver, WA – Hudson’s Bay HS) issued three consecutive bases loaded walks, making it 10-9.

The Rainiers had the bases loaded with one out and Denny Almonte at the plate. Almonte had not put a ball in play in his first four at-bats, but baseball is a funny game… and Almonte became a hero, lining the game-tying single to right when the team absolutely needed him to make contact.

The Rainiers would score three more runs, take a 13-10 lead into the bottom of the ninth, and then make a two-run error with two outs in the bottom of the ninth on a routine play to scare the heebie-jeebies out of everybody. But Logan Bawcom got the final out on a medium-deep fly ball to Almonte in center, and the Rainiers were 13-12 winners.

The game featured:

  • A 5-for-5 performance from Nick Franklin, boosting his season average to a cool .400.
  • Eric Thames extending his hitting streak to 9 straight, and he has a hit or a walk in all 21 games this season.
  • Carlos Triunfel launched a homer off Wheeler, and then took a 97 mph fastball in the back in his next AB. He tried to play through it but eventually left the game in the eighth inning.
  • A 3-for-5, three RBI game from Alex Liddi.
  • A second consecutive tough save converted by Logan Bawcom.
  • A pair of golden sombreros, from Almonte and Mike Zunino.

To recap, the Rainiers won a baseball game in which the starter got scratched, they made five errors, and two players struck out four times apiece. Vegas, baby!

Tonight’s game is at 7:05, and you can listen on South Sound Sports 850 AM or stream the audio online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Andrew Carraway (2-1, 4.43) against Las Vegas RHP Carlos Torres (0-1, 4.61).

Links:

  • Todd Dewey wrote the Rainiers game story for The News Tribune.
  • Fun story from the Las Vegas Sun about Rainiers hitting coach Howard Johnson and 51s manager Wally Backman. Fact: HoJo once hit a grand slam off 51s pitching coach Randy St. Claire.
  • The Mariners shut out the Angels, 6-0. They needed that!
  • Kyle Seager is really heating up, Larry Stone writes.
  • Don Ruiz reports in this notebook that Michael Saunders might begin a rehab assignment with the Rainiers today. I think we can find a spot in the lineup for him.
  • On the roster front, look for the Rainiers to add a relief pitcher from Double-A Jackson today. The Rainiers have an open spot and the bullpen is running on fumes.
  • Here is your Vegas story: a bunch of Rainiers players went to Terry Fator‘s show on the off-day and got some press – including a mention in Norm Clarke’s famous gossip column. That first link has a good photo.
  • Read this cool story on the oldest living former major leaguer.
  • No Rainiers appear in this week’s Baseball America Prospect Hot Sheet, but the blog stats say you guys like it so here it is anyway.
  • In the PCL, Tacoma’s comeback was not the wildest game in the league last night. The New Orleans Zephyrs beat Oklahoma City in 15 innings and it was a crazy one.
  • Yoenis Cespedes is rehabbing with Sacramento and he helped them beat Salt Lake, 6-5. Photo gallery.
  • Fresno beat up the Reno Aces, 11-5. The new members of the Aces are just getting used to playing baseball on the moon at Aces Ballpark.
  • Tucson added knuckleballer Eddie Bonine and got creamed by the Sky Sox, 13-5. Colorado Springs hit four triples in the game.
  • Nashville topped Memphis, 5-2, as my man Scooter Gennett had three hits.
  • Iowa went in to Omaha and came away with a 9-3 win.
  • Scott Van Slyke went 3-for-5 with a homer in Albuquerque’s win at Round Rock, and he’s batting .473 with eight homers and 25 RBI. Sheesh. Call him up already!
  • The independent Atlantic League is doing logical things to speed up the game, and it is working.

Let’s see if we have another wild game tonight!


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