Smoak’s Big Night Not Enough

Justin Smoak launched two home runs and drove in three, but the Rainiers lost in Salt Lake City on Wednesday night, 10-4.

The Rainiers are now 3-3 on this seven-game road trip, so the final result for the trip depends on the last game tonight. Tacoma heads home on Friday for a three-game series against Fresno leading into the all-star break.

The break can’t come quickly enough for the Tacoma bullpen, which is dwindling in numbers. The Mariners unusual decision to have a bullpen day in the big leagues today has caused them to call up a number of relievers – the latest being Lucas Luetge, who was summoned late last night.

Tacoma is down to five relief pitchers here in Salt Lake City, with two of them (Forrest Snow and Stephen Kohlscheen) unavailable tonight after pitching long outings yesterday.

Tacoma’s only available relief pitchers for tonight are Carson Smith, Todd Coffey, and Logan Kensing. So a nice, long starting pitching performance would be ideal.

Thursday’s game starts at 6:05 PM (Pacific) – the Alaska Airlines Pregame Show begins at 5:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM and streaming online right here. Tacoma starts LHP James Gillheeney (3-7, 5.83) against Salt Lake RHP Jarrett Grube (6-3, 4.82).

Links:

  • We start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune, in which Justin Smoak talks about his two homers.
  • Seattle got creamed by the Twins last night, 8-1.
  • The Mariners lined up their starting rotation so that their best three pitchers face Oakland before the all-star break and Los Angeles Of Anaheim after it. As a part of this, Taijuan Walker was optioned to Tacoma and will make two starts for the Rainiers.
  • Larry Stone wrote a feature column on Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon.
  • John Sickels wrote a “prospect retrospective” on Kyle Seager.
  • In the PCL, recently demoted Tommy Milone helped pitch Sacramento to a 6-2 win at Fresno. This notebook updates us on Adam Duvall and his lack of all-star status despite leading all of Triple-A baseball in home runs.
  • Reno blew away Las Vegas, 15-4. Mark Trumbo has homered in three straight rehab games for Reno.
  • El Paso and Albuquerque were suspended by rain in the first inning last night. They’ll try to finish it today. Nice pic of ‘Topes manager Damon Berryhill getting rained on in this link.
  • New Orleans won in Oklahoma City, 4-3. RedHawks outfielder Austin Wates plays the guitar.
  • Iowa outlasted Omaha for a 14-inning, 2-1 victory. Logan Watkins hit the decisive home run.
  • Tim Cooney and Memphis shut down Nashville, 8-1. Nashville pitcher Mike Fiers was added to the all-star team.
  • Colorado Springs rocked Round Rock, 12-4. Rafael Ynoa went 5-for-5.

Last game of the road trip!

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