Jesus Montero hit a two-run double in the first inning and a grand slam in the second as the Rainiers ran away with an 11-2 win in the series opener against New Orleans on Tuesday night.
The Rainiers hit four homers in total: Pat Kivlehan hit his team-leading tenth of the year, while Shawn O’Malley and James Jones each knocked their first of the season.
Montero’s grand slam was the first by Tacoma this season (after 44 bases loaded plate appearances for the team). Montero finished the game 4-for-5 with two runs scored and six RBI.
Danny Farquhar made his first professional start and lasted 3.2 innings. He kept New Orleans off the scoreboard for three innings, but Derek Dietrich got him for a two-run homer in the fourth. By that time Tacoma already led 8-0 so it was no big deal.
Justin Germano followed Farquhar and went the rest of the way without allowing a run.
The Rainiers have won four of their last five games – covering the entire homestand so far. Three more games are left against New Orleans – all at 7:05, through Friday night.
Yesterday: You get a homer, you get a homer, and you get a homer… the Rainiers hit four homers and blasted New Orleans in the series opener, 11-2.
Roster Moves: Prior to last night’s game the Mariners called up starter Mike Montgomery and optioned reliever Mayckol Guaipe to Tacoma. They also activated Tyler Olson from the disabled list and optioned him to Tacoma – he’ll start on Friday. Ketel Marte was placed on the disabled list. And before I could even learn to spell his name without looking it up, Jhombeyker Morales was sent back to extended spring training.
Today: New Orleans (25-25) at Tacoma (23-30), 7:05.
Opponent Affiliation: New Orleans is the Miami Marlins affiliate.
Season Series: Tacoma leads, 1-0.
Starting Pitchers: LHP Travis Blackley (0-1, 4.80) at RHP Sam Gaviglio (4-4, 4.94)
That’s the former Rainiers and Mariners lefty Blackley, who is making his third start of the season today. He was released by the Giants at the end of spring training, and the affable Aussie hung out in the Bay Area until the phone rang. When it did, it was the Marlins on the other line, and Blackley reported to New Orleans.
Injury Update: Ketel Marte broke his left thumb and is reportedly out for around six weeks. Stefen Romero returned to the lineup yesterday after missing ten games with a hip flexor.
Hot Rainiers: Franklin Gutierrez is 15-for-38 over a ten-game hitting streak. Shawn O’Malley has ten hits and three walks in his last seven games – he’s also been hit by pitch three times, so that’s 16 times on base in seven games. Reliever Logan Bawcom has allowed just one run in his last 14.1 innings pitched.
Look Out For: Left-handed pitchers. New Orleans is scheduled to start four consecutive left-handers against the Rainiers in this series, which is quite rare in the PCL (or anywhere, for that matter). Outfielder Jordanny Valdespin has a nine-game hitting streak, and Derek Dietrich is 14-for-33 with two homers in his last nine games.
Welcome Back: New Orleans has former Rainiers and Mariners Brandon Bantz, Cole Gillespie, and Travis Blackley on its roster.
Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 6:50 (Pacific) on South Sound Sports 850 AM. The broadcast also streams online via the TuneIn app – just click here.
PCL Scoreboard: Follow all Pacific Coast League games in real-time with links to Gameday screens right here.
- The Rainiers game story from The News Tribune has all of the details on last night’s victory.
- Jesus Montero spoke extensively with MiLB.com about the game and his season.
- Here’s a heart warming story on Rainiers reliever Tony Zych and a young fan in the Southern League.
- Stefen Romero makes an appearance in the May issue of Crooked Numbers from MiLB.com. He’s looking forward to the 4th of July.
- The Mariners lost in excruciating fashion to the Yankees in 11 innings last night, 5-3. Lloyd McClendon freaked out – here’s the video.
- Ken Rosenthal has a column on the state of the Mariners. As you would expect, it is more questions than answers.
- Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook has lots of good stuff.
- Dom Leone had a bounce-back outing for the Mariners on Monday.
- El Paso’s Cody Decker has another short film on one of his clubhouse pranks, this time involving the violation of the team dress code by the Chihuahuas video intern.
- On the field in the PCL, Carlos Correa returned to action and helped the Fresno Grizzlies win the opener at Colorado Springs, 5-1. Correa is the latest in a line of top prospects to visit Colorado Springs.
- New Reno starter Parker Frazier delivered seven strong innings in a 7-2 win over Round Rock.
- Sacramento scored three runs in the top of the first inning and that was enough to hang on for a 3-2 win at Oklahoma City.
- Nashville’s eight-game win streak ended with a 3-2 loss to Salt Lake.
- Memphis ace Tim Cooney tossed a complete game four-hit shutout in a 6-0 win over Las Vegas. Vegas has lost seven in a row.
- El Paso starter Jason Lane came one out away from a complete game in a 7-4 win over visiting Omaha.
- Javier Baez homered twice and Iowa pounded Albuquerque, 9-3. The Isotopes are struggling amidst a sea of roster moves.
Happy 40th birthday to friend of the blog Ryan Divish!