Rainiers Win Big, Deal With Injuries

The Rainiers had a big offensive showing yesterday in a 9-1 win over Las Vegas, and it was the top of the lineup that got things going.

Nori Aoki batted leadoff and reached base five times. He hit three singles and drew two walks, stole a base, and scored two runs.

Right behind him in the order, Guillermo Heredia had his first big game at the Triple-A level. He went 3-for-4 with a walk, reaching four times, and contributed two extra-base hits. Heredia had a triple and a double, driving in a pair of runs.

The top two spots in the lineup came to the plate ten times, and reached base nine times. That will get an offense going right there.

Cody Martin had yet another strong start – his third straight – but the Rainiers have some pitching problems. Three pitchers were injured on Thursday.

Before the game, in his normal between-starts bullpen session, lefty Brad Mills had shoulder soreness. He was placed on the disabled list yesterday.

Reliever Jonathan Aro left Thursday’s game with elbow discomfort, and he’s now on the disabled list.

And Thursday’s starter Jarrett Grube developed a blister during the game, and while he’s not on the disabled list yet he’s unlikely to make his next start.

There are lots of pitchers in Double-A with PCL experience, most notably Jordan Pries, Forrest Snow, and Sam Gaviglio. But apparently the Mariners are scouring the independent leagues instead of promoting these guys.

Today the team expects to add former Reno Aces reliever Kevin Munson, who has been with Lancaster of the Atlantic League. And I’m hearing we may have another indy ball reliever coming in today as well.

We made it a long time without injuries effecting the Triple-A team, but now our luck has changed.


Yesterday: Tacoma’s offense was clicking in a 9-1 win over Las Vegas on Friday night, with the team knocking 13 hits. Cody Martin didn’t need all of that: the Rainiers starter tossed seven shutout innings, and he has allowed one run in his last 21 innings pitched.

Roster Moves: Another whirlwind: the Rainiers placed pitchers Brad Mills (shoulder) and Jonathan Aro (elbow) on the disabled list, and reliever Casey Coleman opted out of his contract and became a free agent. The team added RHP Andrew Kittredge from Double-A Jackson, and signed reliever Kevin Munson from the independent Atlantic League. An additional pitcher could be added today.

Today: Las Vegas (42-38) Tacoma (45-35-1), 7:05.

Opponent Affiliation: New York Mets.

Season Series: Las Vegas leads, 7-3.

Starting Pitchers: LHP Duane Below (4-6, 4.20) at RHP Donn Roach (4-4, 4.26).

Hot Rainiers: Zach Shank is batting .444 in June (20-for-45)… Stefen Romero has gone 15-for-34 over his last eight games… Rob Brantly has gone 10-for-28 over his last eight games… Guillermo Heredia has back-to-back multiple hit games, he went 3-for-4 with a double and a triple last night.

Look Out For: Johnny Monell has homered in three of his last five games, and he has a six-game hitting streak… Gavin Cecchini has hit safely in eight of his last nine games (13-for-35).

Ex-Rainiers and Local Dudes: Las Vegas has former Rainiers infielder Ty Kelly, and Redmond High School product Michael Conforto. Manager Wally Backman is a native of Hillsboro, Oregon.

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.


PCL Game Reports:

  • This Austin Hedges thing has hit new levels of ridiculousness. The El Paso catcher hit *two* three-run homers in a 9-2 win over Reno last night. In his last 13 games, Hedges has 11 home runs and 27 RBI.
  • Trumpeted prospect Alex Bregman wailed his first Triple-A home run in Fresno’s 4-1 win at Salt Lake.
  • Albuquerque Isotopes fans can take those paper bags off their heads – the ‘Topes 13-game losing streak ended with a 7-2 win at Sacramento. Lefty prospect Kyle Freeland tossed six strong innings and hit a two-run single.
  • Travis Snider had a big game, including the walk-off hit, in Omaha’s 5-4 win over Memphis.
  • Four Round Rock pitchers combined to shut out Iowa, 3-0.
  • Oklahoma City’s Jharel Cotton was dealing in a win at Nashville.
  • Colorado Springs erupted in the fifth inning, scoring seven runs en route to a 13-7 win over New Orleans.

Looks like another beautiful day for a game in Tacoma!


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