The Rainiers division was settled last night.
We’d like to offer our congratulations to the Fresno Grizzlies, who clinched the Pacific-North title with last night’s win over the Iowa Cubs.
In their first year as a Houston Astros affiliate, Fresno has ended a 16-year playoff drought. The Grizzlies last reached the PCL playoffs in their first year in the league: 1998.
It will be interesting to see what happens to Fresno’s roster after the first of September, when the major league rosters expand. The Astros are trying to hang on to the AL West lead, and they’ll call up players who they think can help them do that.
But that’s a common story in the PCL playoffs. Call-ups effect all of the playoff teams.
Who said Gonzaga is strictly a basketball school?
We’ve got an all-Bulldogs pitching match-up tonight at Cheney Stadium, when two Gonzaga Baseball products square off head-to-head.
Tacoma’s Tyler Olson pitched four years for the Zags, before the Mariners drafted him in the seventh round of the 2013 draft.
Memphis starter Arturo Reyes started out at Columbia Basin College, but transferred to Gonzaga for his junior year – the 2013 season. Reyes was selected by the Cardinals in the 40th round of that draft.
The former teammates are both from Washington: Olson grew up in Spokane, and Reyes is from Warden.
Arturo is the younger brother of former El Paso and Tucson pitcher Jorge Reyes, who faced the Rainiers many times from 2012-2014. He’s in the Braves organization now.
Yesterday: Memphis first baseman Dan Johnson hit a two-run homer in the first inning, and a three-run homer in the second as the Redbirds cruised to an 8-2 win over the Rainiers on Tuesday night. Tacoma needs a win tonight to salvage a series split.
Injury Update: Jabari Blash left last night’s game after seeing one pitch – a foul ball he hit down the left field line. Turns out he had some severe cramping in his right calf, but it subsided later and he’s OK now. Manager Pat Listach said he’s going to try to give him a day off today, but we’ll see.
Roster Moves: Tacoma activated pitcher Sam Gaviglio from the disabled list and he pitched two nice scoreless inning in relief last night. Gaviglio had been out since July 5th with a sore elbow.
Today: Memphis (66-65) at Tacoma (61-70), 7:05.
Opponent Affiliation: St. Louis Cardinals.
Season Series: Memphis leads, 2-1.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Arturo Reyes (0-1, 7.71) at LHP Tyler Olson (2-4, 5.09).
It’s a Gonzaga Bulldogs showdown (more in the main body above).
Hot Rainiers: Patrick Kivlehan scored both Tacoma runs last night. He extended his hitting streak to six games, going 12-for-26 with two homers and five doubles during the streak… Tony
Zilch Zych has pitched a scoreless outing in 20 of his last 21 relief appearances (including his brief stint at Double-A).
Look Out For: Dan Johnson has hit safely in eight straight games; after his two early home runs last night the Rainiers walked him twice… Xavier Scruggs is 12-for-34 with three homers in his last nine games.
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 discusses Dan Johnson‘s big night.
- The Mariners overcame a 5-0 deficit and stunned the A’s, 6-5, in a payback game.
- Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook looks at how the Mariners bullpen went from first to (almost) worst.
- Ketel Marte is learning every day in the big leagues, Ryan Divish writes.
- John McGrath has a column about how baseball needs to add more netting to reduce the number of fan injuries.
- In the PCL, the Fresno Bee has a story on the Grizzlies clinching their first playoff spot since 1998.
- Las Vegas is opening up its lead again in the Pacific-South. Dillon Gee tossed seven scoreless in a 3-0 win at New Orleans.
- El Paso fell 2.5 games behind Las Vegas by dropping a 10-4 decision to visiting Colorado Springs. But the Chihuahuas are hosting the San Diego Padres in an exhibition game next spring.
- Sacramento edged Omaha, 5-4, but the River Cats were eliminated from playoff contention. Omaha’s Jose Martinez went 2-for-4, raising his batting average to .391. He’s just about to qualify for the leaderboard – maybe three more games? Can he hit .400?
- Nashville took down Reno, 7-4. Reno reliever Evan Marshall is recovering from a scary injury.
- Rehabbing David Freese launched a grand slam for Salt Lake in an 8-3 win at Round Rock.
- Oklahoma City debuted an impressive reliever in an 8-2 win at Albuquerque. Corey Seager homered for his third time in four games.