Pries Helps End Rainiers Skid

Tacoma ended its five-game losing streak on Saturday night, hanging on for a 5-4 victory in Sacramento.

Starting pitcher Jordan Pries delivered seven outstanding innings in Tacoma’s longest outing by a starting pitcher since opening day (when Blake Beavan went seven against Albuquerque).

Pries even faced a batter in the eighth, allowing a leadoff single before being replaced by Mike MacDougal.

Apparently Pries is a real problem for Sacramento: he’s already faced them three times, and he has allowed one run and nine hits over 19 innings.

Tacoma built an early 4-1 lead, getting big hits from Endy Chavez, Nick Franklin, and Jesus Montero. They added another run in the ninth, when Patrick Brady singled for his first Triple-A hit and scored on an error.

It turned out that the Rainiers needed all five runs, as Sacramento rallied for three in the bottom of the ninth before Logan Bawcom struck out Andy Parrino to end it.

I joked on the air – after it was all over – that if the Rainiers had lost one or two games in a row, it would have been a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth. But since they had lost five straight, you knew it was going to get scary. Seems like it always works out like that, doesn’t it?

Now Tacoma can salvage a split of the series and an acceptable record on this road trip with a win on Sunday. It’s the final game of the season-long 12-game trip, and the Rainiers are 4-7 on the journey.

From my vantage point, there is a big difference between a 5-7 road trip and a 4-8 trip. An old piece of baseball wisdom says “win half of your road games, and clean up at home.” A 5-7 road trip isn’t half, but it’s close enough. A 4-8 trip isn’t close.

Sunday’s game starts at 1:05 – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 12:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts RHP Erasmo Ramirez (0-1, 5.06) against Sacramento RHP Marcus Walden (1-1, 5.92).

The Rainiers made a roster move yesterday: left-handed reliever Clay Rapada was placed on the disabled list with a severely sprained left ankle. Right-handed reliever Carson Smith was activated from the DL and he’s ready to pitch.

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Last day of the road trip. Can’t wait to get home tonight!

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