Rested And Ready In Fresno

Rest! We finally got some rest.

After a two-game stint of zombie baseball, everyone on the Rainiers road trip finally got some sleep last night and is refreshed and ready to go tonight. Two games left on this trip, and then we finally head home for the Saturday game against Omaha.

Tacoma is pleased to be 1-1 after the first two games of the series, each of which was played on minimal sleep due to the rigors of PCL travel. There was a 4:15 AM bus to the airport on Tuesday, a four-hour layover at SFO, and a late arrival in Fresno. The Rainiers played sloppy, but beat Fresno 7-6.

Then of course we have a noon kid’s day game the very next day, so the guys had just a few hours of sleep in the Fresno motel before going back to the ballpark. The Rainiers dropped yesterday’s game by the same score of 7-6 – although they were down 7-0 after five innings and nearly pulled off an amazing comeback.

So the team survived that stint and now everyone is ready for two straight much-needed 7:05 games, and then a trip home.

There is some news on the Fresno side which has an impact on the final two games of this series.

Fresno first baseman A.J. Reed was placed on the 7-day disabled list prior to yesterday’s game. He’s regarded as one of the top hitting prospects in all of minor league baseball, but he left Tuesday’s game in the seventh inning with a hamstring strain. So the Rainiers won’t have to deal with the massive left-handed hitter again until later in the season.

On the other hand, the Astros bumped pitching prospect Joe Musgrave up to Fresno and announced that he will start Friday’s game against Tacoma. Musgrave, a right-hander, is 2-1 with a 0.34 ERA at Double-A Corpus Christi. That’s right, 0.34: he allowed one earned run in 26.1 innings pitched, with three walks and 30 strikeouts.

RAINIERS ROUND-UP

Yesterday: Tacoma fell behind 7-0 after five innings, as a Mariners-ordered short start for James Paxton pressured the Tacoma bullpen. Tacoma nearly came back, as both Stefen Romero and Daniel Robertson homered, but the Rainiers lost 7-6.

Today: Tacoma (19-14) at Fresno (14-18), 7:05.

Opponent Affiliation: Houston Astros.

Season Series: Tied, 1-1.

Starting Pitchers: RHP Adrian Sampson (3-2, 3.47) at LHP Tommy Shirley (3-1, 2.79).

Hot Rainiers: Dario Pizzano has hit safely in five straight games, going 8-for-16… Tyler Smith is 6-for-12 over his last three games… Daniel Robertson has homered twice on this road trip, and he’s hitting .333 (12-for-36) over his last ten games… Chris Taylor has reached base via hit or walk in 28 of the 31 games he has played in.

Look Out For: Veteran shortstop Danny Worth has been on a tear since opening day for Fresno – but he’s missed the first two games of this series with a banged-up shoulder. Worth is hitting .366-5-19, he’s hit safely in 24 of 28 games played, and he’s been the crux of the Fresno offense… Tony Kemp is on a nine-game hitting streak… 2015 PCL MVP Matt Duffy is warming up; he’s 7-for-15 over his last four games.

Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 6:50 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:

PCL Game Reports:

Tacoma is 3-3 so far on this eight-game road trip. A win tonight would be pretty nice…

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