Pries & Kensing Continue Stretch Of Good Pitching

The Rainiers made it two straight wins in Sacramento, shutting out the River Cats 8-0 on Wednesday night.

Tacoma pitchers have allowed just four runs (and only two earned runs) over the first three games of this series. The team’s ERA has dropped from 5.33 to 4.69 in just three games.

Last night it was Jordan Pries and Logan Kensing combining on a four-hit shutout. Pries went the first six innings, and Kensing the final three.

Pries has made two of his three starts against Sacramento, working 12 shutout innings and allowing just three singles to the Cats.

Last night the scoreboard radar gun had him at 91 mph with his fastball, sometimes hitting 92. It’s the movement on the pitch that gives him success – it’s never straight. He also has a cutter he mixes in.

After the game, pitching coach Jaime Navarro said that Pries threw a first-pitch strike to 19 of the 23 batters he faced. Navarro was quite pleased by this.

Offensively, James Jones hit a two-run homer in the first inning, and the Rainiers tacked on six runs (all with two outs) in the seventh.

Jesus Montero hit a long home run to center field that stirred some discussion.

Montero’s bomb was to straight-away center. It was a line drive homer (would have banged off the giant wall at Cheney).

The Sacramento groundskeeper apparently saw where it landed and stepped it off, estimating the distance at 480 feet. I did not see where it landed, but I have trouble believing this because Sacramento centerfielder Shane Peterson tracked the ball all the way back to the fence, not giving up until he was on the warning track.

Regardless of the distance, this baseball was crushed. A line drive homer to CF in this pitcher’s park in Sacramento? Wow.

Montero has homered in five of the last eight games he has played in. He’s tied for second in the PCL with seven homers, and his 21 RBI ranks sixth in the circuit.

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 Chance Ruffin (0-2, 8.44) against Sacramento RHP Arnold Leon* (1-1, 3.75).

Links:

  • The Rainiers game story from The News Tribune has quotes from manager Roy Howell on Jordan Pries and Jesus Montero.
  • Pries talked to the people at MiLB.com regarding his outing last night.
  • This. Is. Awesome. CBS Sports Network is going to carry a Minor League Game Of The Week, starting tonight.
  • The Mariners got rained out last night, but that didn’t stop Bob Dutton from compiling another thorough Mariners Notebook.
  • Mariners shortstop Brad Miller admits he has been pressing at the plate.
  • Want to read about pine tar use in baseball? Todd Dewey has an excellent piece on it.
  • In the PCL, the El Paso Chihuahuas still haven’t picked up a win at their sparkly new ballpark. Fresno beat them yesterday, 6-5.
  • Top prospect Noah Syndergaard tossed a gem as Las Vegas defeated Reno, 6-1. Syndergaard is tentatively scheduled to pitch at Cheney Stadium on Monday night, if you want to see him in person.
  • Salt Lake topped Albuquerque, 7-6. The Bees knocked around a rookie making his Triple-A debut.
  • Nashville swept a doubleheader from New Orleans. Mike Fiers tossed a two-hit, 11-strikeout CG shutout in the opener, improving his record to 5-0, 0.80. Call him up already!
  • Former Rainiers lefty Ryan Feierabend was lights-out, pitching Round Rock to a 5-2 road win over Oklahoma City.
  • No link available due to the Memphis Commercial Appeal‘s tougher-than-Fort-Knox paywall, but Memphis beat Colorado Springs last night, 5-3.
  • Omaha and Iowa got banged again in Des Moines.
  • Baseball America’s minor league round-up is back.

This is the final game of the road trip – the Rainiers return home Friday for fireworks night, and then have Throwback Weekend on Saturday and Sunday.

* Yesterday Leon was pushed back a day, and Josh Lindblom started for Sacramento. I forgot to update this on yesterday’s blog post. E-broadcaster/blogger.

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