The Rainiers were able to finish two games with Salt Lake on Saturday evening, but Tacoma is still looking for its first home win of the season.
It was no surprise that Salt Lake hung on to win the completion of Friday night’s suspended game. The Bees had a 5-0 lead in the fifth when it was halted; they went on to claim an 8-4 lead.
The second game, however, was a rough one for the Rainiers.
Tacoma jumped out to an early 3-0 lead, as Rich Poythress started driving the ball for extra bases. He hit a solo homer in the second inning, and started a two-run rally with a solid double in the fourth.
Brian Sweeney started, and he carried the 3-0 lead into the fifth before tiring. Salt Lake scored two runs before Yoervis Medina escaped the jam.
It was 3-2 Rainiers going to the seventh and final inning. Salt Lake loaded the bases with two outs against Rainiers reliever Danny Farquhar, and Efren Navarro chopped a two-run single through the left side to put the Bees ahead. They hung on for the 4-3 victory.
The loss dropped Tacoma’s record down to 5-5. The Rainiers have lost three in a row. Meanwhile, Salt Lake is now 8-2 and has won five straight.
Prior to the action, the Rainiers added right-handed pitcher Andrew Kittredge to the roster. A product of the University of Washington baseball program, Kittredge came from Double-A Jackson where he had worked four scoreless innings this year.
Kittredge made his Triple-A debut in the first game, allowing one run (a Luis Rodriguez homer) in two innings.
Kittredge replaced D.J. Mitchell on the roster. Mitchell made a somewhat surprising decision to declare free agency after clearing waivers yesterday. He’s going to try his luck with one of the other 29 teams.
Now we have daytime baseball, as Tacoma hosts Salt Lake in a 1:35 game on Sunday afternoon. Tacoma starts LHP Danny Hultzen (2-0, 2.45) against Salt Lake RHP Orangel Arenas (0-1, 11.25). Catch the broadcast on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here.
- We start, as always, with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune – as written by acclaimed author Dave Boling.
- My Minor League Notebook for the TNT identifies the top prospects around the PCL.
- The esteemed John McGrath talked to Mike Zunino, so y’all should read about it.
- Prospect Insider had some guys at Rainiers opening night and here is their report.
- Joe Saunders pitched very well again, but the Mariners lost to the Rangers last night, 3-1.
- Larry Stone’s Sunday package for the Seattle Times features a column about tiny crowds at Safeco Field, a notebook from around the majors, power rankings, and thumbs up-and-down.
- In the PCL, Sacramento and Reno features two top pitching prospects going head-to-head, Sonny Gray and Tyler Skaggs. Sacramento won, 15-11. So much for that pitcher’s duel. Reno relievers maintain a pink backpack full of candy and Advil for use in the bullpen. If I had to pitch in Reno, I’d need some stronger stuff than Advil.
- Colorado Springs banged out 17 hits and beat Las Vegas, 11-6.
- Tucson signed slugger Brandon Allen and knocked off Fresno, 5-3. Fresno center fielder Gary Brown hit his first Triple-A homer.
- New Orleans topped Round Rock 3-2, as closer Chris Hatcher nailed down his fourth save. Link includes creepy dark video of New Orleans manager Ron Hassey.
- They are partying in downtown Des Moines, and not just because it is the weekend. The Iowa Cubs won a baseball game.
- I was going to write a Sunday notebook on Oscar Taveras when Memphis comes around in May, but the Oklahoma newspaper beat me to it. Chalk that one up to the vagaries of the schedule. Maybe I’ll do it anyway.
- The Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs have generated a lot of publicity with their urinal video game. A Sacramento writer has the details. Word in the industry is that there is already an International League visiting broadcasters high-score challenge, with several days worth of meal money on the line.
Day game today. See you at the park!