Rainiers Gain Split, Visit Double-A

The Rainiers picked up a 6-3 win in Memphis on Thursday, earning a split of the four-game series.

The win ended a string of seven consecutive series losses for the Rainiers. That last series that wasn’t a loss came May 6-9 at Reno (of all places!).

Yesterday Jordan Pries pitched seven shutout innings, Abraham Almonte ripped a three-run homer, and Jabari Blash and Chris Taylor each had two hits. You can read all of the details in the first link down below.

Then we hopped on the bus for the three-hour drive to Nashville. On the way, the team stopped off at Double-A Jackson.

The Jackson Generals stadium can be seen from the freeway that goes from Memphis to Nashville. We needed to drop off assistant trainer B.J. Downie and pick up pitcher Forrest Snow (my analysis: pretty good trade).

We all got off the bus and the players stormed the Jackson locker room, saying hello to all of the guys they hadn’t seen since spring training. I visited with Jackson manager (and former Rainiers catcher) Jim Horner, and finally met fellow radio guy Chris Harris in person.

It really was a strange scene. It was a quick visit – maybe ten minutes – and I didn’t get to walk around the ballpark. I snapped a couple of bad pictures.

Taijuan Walker is one of several players who have murals on the outside of the stadium.

Taijuan Walker is one of several players who have murals on the outside of the stadium.

View from the left field corner.

View from the left field corner. That hut that looks like a Tacoma tavern’s smoking area is the bullpen.

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View from left field corner of right field fence. The turf has taken a beating from storms.

After saying our goodbyes, the bus stopped at the team’s favorite Jackson, Tennessee truck stop to pick up supplies for the remainder of the journey. We made it to Nashville right around 8:15.

This will be Tacoma’s final series ever at dilapidated Greer Stadium – the Sounds will play in a brand new stadium closer to downtown Nashville next season.

Nashville is good. They just swept Reno, are 38-30 on the year, and have the best starting pitching in the PCL. Nashville is the Brewers affiliate and they have top prospects Jimmy Nelson and Taylor Jungmann in the rotation.

Friday’s game starts at 5:05 PM (Pacific) – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 4:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts LHP James Gillheeney (1-6, 6.45) against Nashville RHP Taylor Jungmann (2-2, 5.40).

Links:

  • We start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune.
  • The Jackson newspaper has a story on the Rainiers visit.
  • Don’t forget to vote for your favorite Tacoma Rainiers to play in the Triple-A All-Star Game. Fan balloting is 1/3 of the criteria, so get out and vote!
  • The Yankees finished off a three-game sweep of the Mariners last night. Thank goodness that series and the Jetermania is over.
  • The Mariners called up Jesus Montero, Bob Dutton writes in his Mariners notebook.
  • Dutton has a report on Mariners draft signings and the negotiations with No. 1 pick Alex Jackson.
  • One of the Nashville starters Tacoma is facing this weekend ranks high on this week’s Baseball America Prospect Hot Sheet.
  • In the PCL, Omaha hit two homers and beat Sacramento, 6-2. Omaha won the series three games to one – it was Sacramento’s first home series loss of the season.
  • Nashville scored seven runs in the first inning on the way to a 12-6 win over Reno, completing a series sweep.
  • Fresno knocked off Iowa, 5-2, as PCL rookie Joe Panik launched a grand slam. Fresno’s Chris Dominguez is on track for a career year.
  • El Paso outfielder Jake Goebbert went bonkers in an 8-4 sweep-avoiding win over New Orleans. He hit a grand slam and a three-run homer, finishing with seven RBI.
  • Salt Lake starter Joel Pineiro earned the win as the Bees defeated Oklahoma City, 8-5. It was Pineiro’s first PCL win since 2001 when he was with the Rainiers.
  • Albuquerque hit five home runs – but they were all solo shots and the Isotopes lost to visiting Round Rock, 6-5.
  • Las Vegas won a pitcher’s duel at Colorado Springs, 3-1. It was Joel Carreno against my favorite name in the PCL, Yohan Flande. Flande is on track to start Tuesday at Cheney Stadium and I’m going to get to say his name on the radio one hundred times.
  • It’s Friday the 13th, so the Albuquerque newspaper has a story about superstition in baseball.

Uh-oh. That last link just made me realize I my room is on the 13th floor of the hotel. I am not joking. I’m currently typing this blog from my roo

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