Despite being down to 22 active players – and only ten non-pitchers – the Tacoma Rainiers defeated Salt Lake on Thursday night, 4-1.
The win pushed Tacoma’s record over the .500 mark, to 57-56. It’s the first time Tacoma has been over the .500 mark since May 12, when the club was 18-17.
Xavier Avery got things off to a good start, launching the first pitch of the game onto the right field berm for a 1-0 lead. Avery has eight home runs this season – and six of them have come in his last 89 at-bats.
Julio Morban added an RBI triple in the seventh inning, and Ty Kelly ripped his career-high 15th homer with a man on base in the eighth.
The Rainiers nearly pitched a shutout. The Bees scored with two outs in the ninth, ending Tacoma’s bid for its first nine-inning shutout at Salt Lake since the franchise rejoined the league in 1994.
The Rainiers go for a series win today. It’s the final meeting of the year between the two teams, and Tacoma leads the season series 8-7.
As for the roster, I was told not to expect any new players today. The Mariners are going to make some moves at the big league level, and that will dictate what happens with the Rainiers roster.
Friday’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 (3-8, 6.10) against Salt Lake LHP Wade LeBlanc (7-2, 4.19).
- We start with the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune, which includes comments from Nick Franklin after being traded.
- Mike Zunino hit the go-ahead home run as the Mariners beat the Indians, 6-5.
- News stories on the Mariners trades: one from Bob Dutton, and another from Ryan Divish.
- John McGrath offered his thoughts on the Mariners actions at the trade deadline.
- Larry Stone also weighed in on the Mariners moves.
- Dutton’s Mariners notebook has some quotes from general manager Jack Z, in which he answered his critics.
- Jeff Sullivan’s analysis of the Mariners trades can be found here.
- Baseball Prospectus takes a look at the three-way trade involving Franklin and Austin Jackson.
- ESPN’s Keith Law looks at the 3-team trade and says that the Rays did not get enough for David Price. If you’re an ESPN Insider, Buster Olney’s column today has lots of great stuff on the deadline deals and what could happen next.
- The Mariners were one of Dave Schoenfield’s trade deadline winners.
- The Mariners significantly improved their playoff odds, Dave Cameron writes for Fangraphs.
- For a good national overview of trade deadline moves, try Ken Rosenthal’s round-up.
- In the PCL, Deck McGuire tossed six scoreless innings and Nate Freiman homered as Sacramento beat Albuquerque, 5-0.
- Reno fell to four games behind Sacramento by losing in Fresno, 7-2. Kelvin Marte was impressive in his Triple-A debut for the Grizzlies. University of Washington product Jake Lamb was promoted to Reno and figures to make his Triple-A debut tonight.
- Rafael Montero and Las Vegas shut out El Paso, 2-0, expanding the 51s lead in the Pac-South to 8.5 games. Catcher Kevin Plawecki is back from an episode of vertigo.
- Round Rock shortstop Luis Sardinas had a big game at the plate in an 8-2 win over Oklahoma City.
- Memphis picked up a 6-4 win at Omaha.
- Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, and Mike Olt homered as Iowa won in New Orleans, 4-0.
- Nashville and Colorado Springs split a doubleheader, and they’ll play another twinbill today.
It’s the last day in Salt Lake City, as the road trip moves on to Albuquerque tomorrow.