River Cats Enjoy Rain, Top Rainiers

Sacramento used a six-run second inning to take command, eventually beating Tacoma in the series opener at Cheney Stadium on Saturday evening. 8-4 was the final.

The game was delayed for 42 minutes with two outs in the top of the fifth inning, while Sacramento held a 7-2 lead. It was our first rain delay of the season (there’s been one rainout, but that one was called early before the scheduled start time).

Tacoma is in its first skid of the season, having lost three straight games to fall to 10-6 overall. Starting pitcher Joe Wieland had a rough outing and was knocked out in the second – and taking a line drive off his lower back in the first inning certainly didn’t help.

On the positive side, the Rainiers probably won’t have to see Chris Heston again this series. A 12-game winner who pitched a no-hitter during his rookie campaign with the Giants last year, Heston is stuck in Triple-A waiting for a rotation opening in SF. He pitched four innings in long relief last night, and is likely down for the remainder of the series.

Tacoma could use a win on Sunday. Scheduled starter Cody Martin is 3-0 so far – can he be the stopper?


Yesterday: A six-run second inning sealed the deal for Sacramento, which beat Tacoma 8-4 in the series opener. All six runs in the inning scored with two outs.

Today: Sacramento (6-11) at Tacoma (10-6), 1:35.

Opponent Affiliation: San Francisco Giants.

Season Series: Sacramento leads, 1-0.

Starting Pitchers: RHP Chris Stratton (1-2, 7.16) at RHP Cody Martin (3-0, 3.78).

Hot Rainiers: Chris Taylor has a career-best 13-game hitting streak, and he’s reached base in 15 straight games. He’s 21-for-54 during the hitting streak… Stefen Romero has multiple hits in eight of the 14 games he has played in, and he has a nine-game hitting streak… Tacoma’s dual closers Blake Parker and Mayckol Guaipe are a combined 7-for-7 in save opportunities.

Look Out For: Ryan Lollis never makes outs against Tacoma. He hit .409 against Tacoma last year, and last night he went 3-for-4… power prospect Mac Williamson has gone 8-for-17 with two homers over his last four games.

Ex-Rainiers Alert: Sacramento has former Rainiers Miguel Olivo and Darren Ford on the team. Yes, that Miguel Olivo. He’s 37-years-old and has already hit two homers this year. Pitching coach Dwight Bernard had the same job for Tacoma for seven years.

Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 1:20 on South Sound Sports 850 AM. The broadcast also streams online via the TuneIn app – just click here. It’s a Sunday home game, so Bob Robertson joins me on the air and will call the middle innings.

PCL Scoreboard: Follow all Pacific Coast League games in real-time with links to Gameday screens right here.


  • The Rainiers game story centers on Joe Wieland and the line drive off his back.
  • My Minor League Notebook for the paper looks at (among other things) how James Paxton used video to recover his mechanics.
  • Highlight of Saturday: the Mariners low-A Clinton club beat Cedar Rapids in 18 innings, 2-1. Oh, I should mention that it was the first game of a doubleheader. This is a fun post.
  • Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook includes another fun minor league item, on Class-A Bakersfield starter Andrew Moore.
  • Mike Trout vs. Felix Hernandez. We know how that goes. The Mariners three-game win streak came to an end. Felix did become the Mariners all-time franchise strikeout leader, passing Randy Johnson.
  • With Shoreline’s Blake Snell debuting for Tampa yesterday, Ryan Divish checked in on major leaguers from Washington. One to add to the list: Port Orchard’s Jason Hammel is 2-0, 1.00 after three starts for the Chicago Cubs.
  • John McGrath blesses us with his MLB Power Rankings and the associated one-liners.
  • John Sickles has some thoughts on Mariners top pitching prospect Edwin Diaz, who is off to a great start at Double-A Jackson. Diaz is knocking on the door to Tacoma.
  • Interesting Triple-A story from Milwaukee, where the Brewers are still bitter about be punted out of Nashville by the Sounds ownership, and are trying to figure out what to do about their affiliation with Colorado Springs.

PCL Game Reports:

  • Albuquerque stayed hot, winning its sixth in a row. A wild pitch with the bases loaded brought in the game-winning run in a 5-4 victory at Las Vegas.
  • Archie Bradley returned from an erratic spot-start with the Diamondbacks and delivered a strong outing in Reno’s 5-3 win over Fresno.
  • El Paso got rained out at Salt Lake. Double-dip today.
  • Omaha out-slugged Colorado Springs in Omaha, 11-9. Jorge Bonifacio had a key homer.
  • Nashville had just three hits, yet still managed to score four runs, and lost anyway. New Orleans got ’em, 7-4, with Destin Hood having a big game.
  • Joey Gallo homered and Round Rock shut out Memphis, 3-0.
  • And your game of the day: up from a two-week tour of Double-A Tulsa, former Rainiers reliever Logan Bawcom pitched three scoreless innings for Oklahoma City, and in his first professional at-bat he executed the game-winning squeeze bunt to bring Oklahoma City a 6-4 win over Iowa in 13 innings.

Time for the Rainiers to end this little skid.

One Response to River Cats Enjoy Rain, Top Rainiers

  1. Mark Bushnell says:

    Hopefully Paxton really has figured it out instead of 1 good game.

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