We had Rainiers rainout No. 4 yesterday, and that means doubleheader today.
Tacoma and Salt Lake will play two seven-inning games, starting at 6:05 tonight at Cheney Stadium. There will be about 25 minutes between games, and yes the Friday Night Fireworks show will still go off after the second game. The weather forecast looks promising for both games to be played tonight.
There was some news yesterday, and it wasn’t good.
Tacoma first baseman Ji-Man Choi was suspended 50 games by Major League Baseball for testing positive for methandienone, an anabolic steroid. Apparently this stuff is available over-the-counter in Korea but has been illegal here since 2001. At any rate, it’s against the rules which should have been well-known to Choi. Both the Mariners and Choi made brief statements which you can find right here.
So Tacoma is down a first baseman – and a heckuva hitter – until mid-June. Choi has left Tacoma and will be at extended spring training in Arizona while he serves the suspension.
The Rainiers made a bunch of roster moves yesterday:
- Tacoma added reliever Stephen Pryor to the active roster, and placed reliever Nick Hill on the 7-day disabled list.
- Choi was placed on the suspended list – he does not count on the Rainiers 25-man roster.
- Outfielder Julio Morban joins the team from extended spring training, where he was recovering from a broken leg suffered at the end of the 2013 season. Morban is a highly regarded prospect and a good hitter who has been slowed by injuries.
- Chantz Mack – a 2013 draft pick from “The U” – joins the club from extended spring training to provide outfield depth while James Jones is in the big leagues.
- Right-hander Jordan Pries is here in Tacoma and he will be activated to start for the Rainiers tomorrow. He was pitching well at Double-A Jackson.
It should be fun to watch Morban play. He’ll probably DH quite a bit initially as he gets his playing legs back, and slowly be added to the outfield mix.
Friday’s doubleheader starts at 6:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 5:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Andrew Carraway (0-0, 11.57) against Salt Lake LHP Justin Thomas (1-0, 6.10) in the first game, and the Rainiers are going with RHP Chance Ruffin (0-1, 7.45) in game two against a Bees starter to be announced.
- With Choi out of the picture for a while, Jesus Montero is going to see a lot of action at first base.
- Jay at USS Mariner has a good post on the Choi situation.
- The Mariners lost in Texas and fell under .500 for the first time this season.
- John McGrath seems a bit exasperated by the Mariners lack of starting pitching.
- There are lots of Mariners and Rainiers tidbits in Bob Dutton’s notebook.
- No Mariners appear on this week’s Baseball America Prospect Hot Sheet.
- John Sickels wrote a few paragraphs on James Jones.
- In the PCL, Las Vegas won its sixth in a row with a 6-0 shutout at Reno. The 51s have the best record in the league at 12-3, but not everything is perfect for the Mets affiliate: the team was on the road while the pizza convention was going on.
- A Sacramento native helped Fresno end the River Cats six-game winning streak.
- Miguel Olivo is having fun in Albuquerque. The ‘Topes shaved the Chihuahuas last night, 2-1.
- The Rockies must be pleased with Tyler Matzek‘s season so far. The lefty tossed another gem in a 3-2 win over Oklahoma City last night.
- Nashville starter Hiram Burgos struck out ten as the Sounds edged Memphis, 5-4.
- Omaha got midieval on Round Rock, 14-1.
- The Iowa Cubs made six errors but still beat New Orleans, 5-4. The writer for the Des Moines Register had some fun with that.
- I live near the zoo, and if I see the owl in my yard I will not be reporting him. Be free, owl, be free. Don’t let the man keep you down!
- What do you think of these Outdoors Night jerseys they are wearing in Scranton?
Let’s play two!