Back-To-Back Attacks

We’ve got an unusual trend going on here.

Five of the last six Tacoma Rainiers games have included back-to-back home runs – hit by either Tacoma or the opposition.

Here’s how it has played out:

  • August 27: Stefen Romero & Patrick Kivlehan off Nashville’s Brock Huntzinger
  • August 28: Jabari Blash & Kivlehan off Nashville’s Nate Long
  • August 30 (game one): none (August 29 was rained out)
  • August 30 (game two): Blash & Mike Zunino off Nashville’s R.J. Alvarez
  • August 31: Blash & Zunino off Salt Lake’s Drew Rucinski
  • Sept 1: Salt Lake’s Roger Kieschnick & Stephen McGee off Tyler Olson.

I don’t have to flip through years of scorebooks to know I’ve never seen a run of back-to-back home runs like this before. What an unlikely trend.

RAINIERS ROUND-UP

Yesterday: Salt Lake scored eight runs against the Tacoma bullpen, turning a tight game into a blowout 10-1 Bees win.

Roster Move: The Mariners surprisingly optioned Jesus Montero to Tacoma. I’m not sure why – we’ll wait for the reporters covering the Mariners to pass along the explanation. I believe this is the first time in the 17 years I’ve been with Tacoma that the Mariners have sent a player down after September 1st – although it is unusual that the PCL schedule lasts all the way until the 7th.

Today: Tacoma (65-73) at Salt Lake (56-82), 6:05 (Pacific).

Opponent Affiliation: Los Angeles Angels Of Anaheim.

Season Series: Salt Lake leads, 10-4.

Starting Pitchers: LHP James Paxton (0-1, 9.82) at LHP Tyler DeLoach (1-4, 5.74)

Hot Rainiers: Jabari Blash has a six-game hitting streak, which includes four homers… Patrick Brady has a seven-game hitting streak.

Look Out For: Third baseman Kyle Kubitza has reached base via hit or walk in 37 straight games – the second longest streak of its kind in the PCL this season. He also leads the league with 41 doubles… Stephen McGee is 10-for-16 over his first five Triple-A games, and he was batting just .253 in A-ball.

Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 5:50 (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.

Links:

  • The Rainiers game story notes that odd lineups can occur after the September call-ups.
  • Logan Morrison‘s pinch-hit two-run home run gave the Mariners a 7-5 win at Houston.
  • Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook opens with the four players called up from Tacoma, and also tells us the seven Mariners who will play in the Arizona Fall League.
  • Here are the complete Arizona Fall League rosters, from Baseball America.
  • Your most fun read of the day is this New York Times article on bat flipping in the Korean Baseball Organization, which includes comments from friend-of-the-blog Dan from MyKBO.
  • In the PCL, Iowa was three games behind Oklahoma City in the American-North standings and they were set to play a doubleheader last night in Bricktown. The first game went 19 innings. Oklahoma City won it on a two-out, two-run homer in the bottom of the 19th hit by Buck Britton, who was 1-for-8 in the game prior to that at-bat. Then Oklahoma City won the second game 3-1, rallying for three runs in the sixth against Iowa ace Carlos Pimentel. The winning pitcher in the second game was Deck McGuire, who was at Double-A Tulsa during the first game and was asked to drive 100 miles to Oklahoma City for game two. Oklahoma City can clinch the division title with a win over Iowa today or tomorrow.
  • Las Vegas opened its lead up to 1.5 games in the Pacific-South by beating second place El Paso, 8-7. Vegas had an 8-3 lead after six innings and barely held on. El Paso’s Alex Dickerson won the PCL Rookie of the Year award.
  • After clinching the Pacific-North over a week ago, Fresno continued its stumble to the finish line with a 3-2 home loss to Albuquerque. Fresno is 2-8 in the last ten games.
  • Reno’s Aaron Blair tossed another gem as the Aces beat Sacramento, 5-2.
  • Colorado Springs edged Omaha, 4-3.
  • Rehabbing Jon Jay helped Memphis top New Orleans, 6-3.
  • Round Rock rolled to a 10-5 win at Nashville, as recently promoted top prospects Lewis Brinson and Nomar Mazara each had big games at the plate.

Maybe Montero will be involved in back-to-back jacks tonight!

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