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).
- The Mariners won yesterday, beating Houston on a Kyle Seager walk-off homer.
- John McGrath apologized for criticizing the propriety of Kyle Seager Bat Night.
- Ryan Divish has a post explaining the Mariners roster moves.
- Former big league pitcher and Las Vegas 51s radio announcer Jerry Reuss wrote a book of funny baseball tales.
- Last season’s PCL Pitcher of the Year appears to be in line for elbow surgery.
- Here’s the story about the 21-run salute that Las Vegas gave El Paso on Tuesday afternoon.
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.