Tacoma lost its third in a row yesterday, 4-1 to Las Vegas. The 51s won the series, three games to one – although Tacoma easily took the season series from the Mets Triple-A club, 10-6.
Tonight Taijuan Walker takes the mound for the Rainiers, making his second Triple-A start. He tossed six shutout innings in his Rainiers debut on Tuesday, getting the win in a 1-0 victory over Fresno.
In an attempt to end a team-wide hitting slump, and beat the heat a little bit, the Rainiers are giving away free ice cream sandwiches to all fans tonight (while supplies last).
Ice cream sandwiches?
Tacoma Rainiers hitting coach Howard Johnson is the biggest aficionado of ice cream sandwiches I have ever met. He absolutely crushes the things. He recently ate 21 of them during a four-game series in Colorado Springs (they were free in the clubhouse – a mistake the Sky Sox clubbie will not make again).
HoJo’s boys are in a slump: his hitters have scored a whopping total of five runs in the last five games, collecting just 33 hits during that time (and batting .211).
We’re hoping that giving HoJo and you fans free ice cream sandwiches will unleash a deluge of hits and runs of the likes unseen since… well, Tacoma’s 25-6 win in Colorado Springs on May 29.
So come out to the ballpark, see Taijuan Walker pitch, enjoy a chilled ice cream sandwich, and watch the Rainiers break out of their slump.
First pitch is set for 7:05, and if you can’t make it to the ballpark you’ll have to buy your own ice cream sandwich and set your radio to South Sound Sports 850 AM – or stream the broadcast online right here, or try the TuneIn app for iPads and smart phones. Tacoma starts RHP Taijuan Walker (1-0, 0.00) against Colorado Springs RHP Jeff Manship (3-6, 6.33).
This series, by the way, is a battle for first place. Tacoma leads the Sky Sox by two games in the standings. The teams have played eight games against one another this season, all in the Springs, splitting them up 4-4.
The Sky Sox just added veteran slugger Xavier Nady, whom I was hoping the Rainiers would get. Nady hit .310 with 11 homers and 43 RBI for Omaha before exercising an out in his contract and becoming a free agent. The Rockies worked quickly and immediately signed him.
Colorado Springs just played a five-game series against Tucson, who is in first place in the South. The Padres won that series, three games to two, including a massive 14-1 shellacking at Security Service Field yesterday.
- We start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune.
- The Mariners lost the game and the series to the lowly Cubs. Jeremy Bonderman accepted blame for the defeat.
- John McGrath wrote about Brad Miller‘s first major league hit.
- Baseball America has an item on James Paxton‘s last start.
- John Sickels tells us to keep an eye on Mariners Class-A pitching prospect Tyler Pike.
- Here’s the story from The Springs on Tucson’s 14-1 pasting of the Sky Sox.
- The Salt Lake Bees withered in 107 degree heat and lost at Fresno, 6-4. Yes, they played a day game.
- Just 180 miles north, Sacramento hosted Reno in a night game – temperatures cooled off to 105. Daric Barton hit the go-ahead homer in the eighth for the River Cats.
- Round Rock improved to 12 games over .500 by beating New Orleans, 5-1.
- Tim Dillard became Nashville’s all-time wins leader by earning the victory in the Sounds 5-3 decision over Oklahoma City.
- Omaha shut out Iowa, 3-0, as Danny Duffy delivered the goods. Duffy was named PCL Pitcher of the Week today.
- Jonathan Sanchez pitched well for Albuquerque in a 5-3 win at Memphis.
I’m not sure if I can wait five hours before getting an ice cream sandwich. Might have to walk down to the corner store…