Rainiers Salvage Split, Ready For Dramatic Change Of Scenery

Tacoma held on for a 3-2 win at Oklahoma City on Tuesday night, grabbing a split of the four-game series.

Which is rather remarkable, seeing how the Rainiers batted .164 and scored seven – *seven* – runs in the four-game series.

That’s going to change tonight, when the Rainiers road trip moves on to high-elevation Colorado Springs.

The Springs is where hitters binge and pitchers cringe. Get ready for some very high-scoring baseball games over the next four days.

Just last night the Sky Sox lost at home to Reno, 17-11.

Tacoma used to play eight games a season at Colorado Springs, but when the league realigned prior to the 2014 season (because Tucson moved to El Paso) the Sky Sox were swapped over to the American Conference. Now Tacoma visits the Springs just one time every two years.

Colorado Springs was never my favorite road trip (understatement!), but after two years away I’m kind of looking forward to the series. I just checked – my favorite Italian deli is still in business, so that’s good news.

RAINIERS ROUND-UP

Yesterday: Roenis Elias had the game he was looking for, delivering seven strong innings in Tacoma’s 3-2 win at Oklahoma City. Mayckol Guaipe and Tony Zych pitched perfect innings in relief to finish off the Dodgers, giving Tacoma a series split.

Roster Moves: Yesterday the Rainiers placed pitcher Jordan Pries (hip) on the disabled list. This leaves Tacoma with a 24-man roster.

Today: Tacoma (58-66) at Colorado Springs (51-72), 5:35 (Pacific).

Opponent Affiliation: Milwaukee Brewers.

Season Series: First game today.

Starting Pitchers: RHP Adrian Sampson (1-2, 4.95) at LHP Brent Suter (1-0, 2.38).

After pitching on the East Coast his whole career prior to July 31, Sampson makes his first career start 6,200 feet above sea level. This will be interesting – wish him luck!

Hot Rainiers: Jabari Blash hit safely in all four games of the Oklahoma City series, going 4-for-13 with two homers. Tony Zilch Zych has pitched a scoreless outing in 17 of his last 18 relief appearances (including his brief stint at Double-A).

Look Out For: Offense. We’re going to a launching pad: Security Service Field. The Sky Sox added Domingo Santana (previously with Fresno) at the trade deadline and he’s hitting up a storm, batting .370 since the deal. Luis Sardinas has gone 13-for-27 over his last seven games.

Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 5:20 (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.

Links:

  • The Rainiers game story is all about the great start by Roenis Elias.
  • Hisashi Iwakuma didn’t pull off a Vander Meer, but he did get the win as Seattle topped Texas, 3-2.
  • In Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook we learn that James Paxton could be rehabbing with the Rainiers soon.
  • In the PCL, Fresno held off New Orleans, 14-12. Fresno has gone 16-1 in the last 17 games, and the local newspaper is suggesting Matt Duffy is the PCL Most Valuable Player.
  • Las Vegas edged Iowa on the good old walk-off hit by pitch. Dan Rohlfing got drilled by Brian Cooper with the bases loaded for a 6-5 win.
  • El Paso keeps pressuring Vegas. The Chihuahuas finished off a four-game road sweep at Nashville with a 9-4 win last night. El Paso is still 1.5 games behind Las Vegas in the Pac-South.
  • Sacramento won its ninth in a row, whacking Round Rock, 9-4. Jarrett Parker had three hits and a homer.
  • Reno out-slugged Colorado Springs, 17-11. This is probably the shortest write-up of a 17-11 game in the history of sportswriting. I love how “both teams used five pitchers” made it but Brandon Drury‘s five-hit game was omitted. MiLB.com caught up with Drury.
  • Omaha held off Salt Lake, 7-3. Lots of folks around the PCL are expecting Omaha to win 15 straight games, race past Oklahoma City to win the division title, and then sweep through the playoffs for their third straight PCL championship. They’re 6.5 games back with 20 to play.
  • Memphis ended a six-game losing streak with a 5-4 takedown of Albuquerque. Sam Tuivailala has been one of the top relievers in the league this year, and he nailed down a two-inning save.

Gotta rest up my voice for all of the runs I expect to see in this series. I’m predicting over 60 runs total (both teams) in four games.

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