After Friday night’s rough game in Albuquerque, I was very interested to see how the Rainiers would rebound on Saturday.
There was no need for concern.
The Rainiers reverted right back to the form that enabled them to go 6-1 on the opening homestand, playing well in all facets of the game during a 5-3 win over the Isotopes on Saturday night.
Good defense, good pitching, timely hitting – it’s happened a lot early in the season, and the Rainiers are 7-2.
Stefen Romero had two more hits and his early season contributions have been remarkable: he’s had six multiple-hit games in the first nine days of the season.
Mike Zunino is going to start getting attention, because he has homered in three straight games. His homer on Saturday came on an inside pitch that he muscled out down the left field line – might have been an Albuquerque homer (read: high elevation). But his monster shot on Friday would have been out of any park, and it came off a change-up. The first homer in the streak – Wednesday in Tacoma – was a bomb.
The Tacoma bullpen was terrific again, with Steve Johnson delivering two scoreless innings and Mayckol Guaipe closing the ninth. Kudos to those guys – protecting a two-run lead over the final three innings in a launching pad like Albuquerque is no easy feat.
Yesterday: The Rainiers evened the series in Albuquerque, as Adrian Sampson bounced back from a two-run first inning to go six frames and earn the win. Chris Taylor singled in the go-ahead run in the top of the seventh inning.
Today: Tacoma (7-2) at Albuquerque (5-5), 12:35 (Pacific).
Opponent Affiliation: Colorado Rockies.
Season Series: Tacoma leads, 4-2.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Donn Roach (1-0, 3.18) at RHP Eddie Butler (1-0, 4.50).
Hot Rainiers: Stefen Romero has multiple hits in six of the nine games he has played in, but more importantly for this baseball geek he has tripled in three straight games… Ed Lucas extended his hitting streak to eight games, and Mike Zunino has a seven-game hitting streak with homers in his last three… Boog Powell and Chris Taylor have six-game hitting streaks.
Look Out For: Triple-A rookies Jordan Patterson and Mike Tauchman have seven-game hitting streaks… Patterson has a .538 on-base percentage in six games against Tacoma.
Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 12:20 (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.
- Pat Listach is going to keep Mike Zunino‘s bat in the lineup even when he’s not catching, we learn in the Rainiers game story from The News Tribune.
- It was Holly Holm Night in Albuquerque. She’s a hometown hero.
- My Sunday Minor League Notebook for the paper is back for 2016, and the opening edition leads with an item on a red-hot outfielder at Double-A Jackson.
- The Mariners edged the Yankees on Saturday, with Felix Hernandez earning the win even though it was the worst of his three starts this season. Baseball!
- Today Hisashi Iwakuma faces Masahiro Tanaka, and goodness gracious this is a big story in Japan. Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook has more. Listen to this song while reading that story.
- I enjoyed John McGrath’s Sunday baseball column on the differences between Bryce Harper and Mike Trout, and how we can enjoy them both.
- McGrath is an expert at the single-sentence round-up, as evidenced in this week’s MLB Power Rankings.
- Ryan Divish took a look at some of the rookies making an early impact in the majors.
- Fresno scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to tie Las Vegas, only to lose in the 11th, 7-5. Fresno pitchers issued 14 walks yet somehow they almost won.
- Salt Lake hammered Sacramento at Raley Field, 10-5. Nick Buss continues to swing a hot bat for the Bees.
- The El Paso Chihuahuas game against Reno “skittered out of kilter” early.
- Omaha has been getting good starting pitching. Brooks Pounders delivered last night and Omaha won in New Orleans, 6-1.
- Five Iowa pitchers combined on a five-hit shutout and the I-Cubs beat Round Rock, 7-0.
- There was a top-notch pitching prospect showdown in Oklahoma City, where Nashville’s Sean Manaea faced Dodgers phenom Julio Urias. Urias gave up some early homers, Manaea struck out 11, and Nashville won, 6-1.
- Memphis at Colorado Springs was snowed out, and they have already postponed today’s game. They hope to play two on Monday.
We’ve got daytime baseball coming on Monday, too – so check in early tomorrow!