Reno shocked the Rainiers with a 7-4 win on Saturday evening, and the Aces have a chance to win a series at Cheney Stadium.
Tacoma has won four straight series at home – no easy task when they are all four-gamers – and has not lost a home series since the end of April. Sacramento rolled in and took three-of-four, April 23-26.
Today Tacoma faces a situation in which it must win to salvage a split of the series, and it must do so against one of the top starting pitchers in the PCL.
A win today, and Tacoma is back up to a four-game lead in the division. A loss, and the lead is down to two games.
It makes for a rather interesting situation for a mid-season game.
Yesterday: Reno shortstop Jack Reinheimer‘s two-out, three-run homer off Tacoma relief ace Blake Parker in the top of the ninth inning gave the Aces a 7-4 win. Reinheimer had not homered since Opening Day, over 250 plate appearances ago. Reno scored six of its seven runs on two-out hits. Dario Pizzano went 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBI for Tacoma.
Roster Move: There were additional moves prior to Saturday’s game which occurred after yesterday’s blog was posted. Infielder Zach Shank – the hottest hitter on the team – was sent back to Double-A Jackson because the Mariners want Luis Sardinas to play daily. Justin DeFratus was indeed traded to the Texas Rangers, as the “player to be named later” in the Patrick Kivlehan deal. This left Tacoma shorts a pitcher, so Jake Brentz joined the club from extended spring training. Brentz is slated to open the season at Everett this week, but he’s here for bullpen depth this weekend.
Today: Reno (32-29) at Tacoma (35-26-1), 1:35.
Opponent Affiliation: Arizona Diamondbacks.
Season Series: Reno leads, 2-1.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Braden Shipley (4-3, 3.23) at RHP Joe Wieland (4-3, 8.37).
Shipley is considered the top pitching prospect in the Arizona Diamondbacks system, and he has thrown well during his first Triple-A season.
Hot Rainiers: Patrick Kivlehan has hit safely in seven straight games and is 11-for-29 since re-joining the Rainiers… Chris Taylor has reached base with a hit or a walk in 50 of his 55 games this season… Boog Powell has hit .360 (9-for-25) over his last seven games.
Look Out For: Socrates Brito has a 13-game hitting streak, with 24 total hits – and he’s 6-for-14 in this series… Tuffy Gosewisch is 6-for-12 in this series, and he has hit safely in nine straight games going 19-for-37.
Ex-Rainiers: Reno has former Mariners and Rainiers reliever Dominic Leone, and former Rainiers third basemen Carlos Rivero and Ed Lucas.
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. Bob Robertson joins me in the booth today.
PCL Scoreboard: Follow all Pacific Coast League games in real-time with links to Gameday screens right here.
- The Rainiers game story from The News Tribune leads things off.
- My weekly Minor League Notebook for the paper is about how Tyler O’Neill‘s status will reveal the philosophy of the Mariners new Player Development Department.
- Congratulations to manager Daren Brown and his team as the Mariners Double-A Jackson affiliate clinched the first half title in the Southern League last night. They play a split-season format, and Jackson will be in the playoffs.
- The Mariners lost a heartbreaker to Texas yesterday, 2-1, after being a strike away from victory.
- Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook is chock full of information. First round draft pick Kyle Lewis signed and will play for Everett, Felix Hernandez will be out until after the all-star break, and more Mariners draft picks.
- The draft is over – here is the complete list of Mariners picks.
- Oh, no. Golden State Warriors star Klay Thompson attended the Dodgers-Giants game in San Francisco yesterday – a heated rivalry – and got booed by his hometown fans for wearing a Dodgers cap. His brother Trayce plays for the Dodgers. Lots of conflicts here!
PCL Game Reports:
- Salt Lake scored twice in the tenth inning to win in Fresno, 4-2. Tim Lincecum starts for the Bees today.
- Welcome to the PCL, kid. Mets prospect Robert Gsellman allowed nine runs over three innings in his Triple-A debut at Albuquerque last night, taking the loss in a 10-4 defeat. Ben Paulsen is back in Albuquerque.
- New El Paso starter Bryan Rodriguez delivered seven scoreless innings in a 3-0 win over Sacramento.
- Memphis whitewashed Colorado Springs, 2-0, as 34-year-old Jerome Williams spun a complete game shutout.
- New Orleans starter Dylan Axelrod shut down Omaha, 3-1.
- Oklahoma City held on for a tough 4-3 win over Nashville.
- Round Rock wrecked Iowa, 14-9. The paper has a story on how the Cubs top catching prospect studies the major league pitching staff.
Day game today, and then we are off to Salt Lake City for a quick four-game series. Tacoma returns home on Friday.