Fresno took the opening game of the series on Monday night, a 5-1 win at Cheney Stadium.
The Rainiers were down 4-0 after two innings and didn’t threaten much from that point forward. There were two innings in which the Rainiers got some runners on base after there were two outs, but couldn’t get that final two-out hit to bring ’em in.
Reno picked up a game on the Rainiers, by winning in Sacramento 6-1. The Aces are 2.5-games back with seven to go – and they come to Tacoma on Friday night for the final four games of the regular season.
Tacoma will try to get back on track today. A strong starting pitcher performance would be a big step in the right direction.
Yesterday: Fresno scored two runs in the first inning and two more runs in the second, coasting to a 5-1 win over the Rainiers in the opener of an eight-game homestand. Zach Shank had three hits to lead Tacoma, and the Rainiers bullpen pitched well.
‘Magic Number’: Five. That’s the total number of Tacoma wins + Reno losses needed for the Rainiers to clinch the Pacific-North division title.
Today: Fresno (70-66-1) at Tacoma (75-60-1), 7:05.
Opponent Affiliation: Houston Astros.
Season Series: Fresno leads, 7-6.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Cesar Valdez (12-1, 3.08) at RHP Sam Gaviglio (3-2, 3.93)
Fresno made an unexpected change to its starting rotation yesterday, activating Mike Hauschild from the disabled list and starting him, and pushing back Brady Rodgers to Wednesday.
Hot Rainiers: Dan Vogelbach has reached base via hit or walk in 25 straight games, and he has drawn a walk in 21 of the 25 games… Daniel Robertson has hit safely in 11 of his last 12 games. He is hitting .345 since the all-star break… Tyler Smith is batting .304 in August.
Look Out For: Jon Kemmer has improved as the season has gone on. He’s hit safely in his last five games, and he’s batted .299 with eight home runs and a .966 OPS in the month of August… Nolan Fontana is batting .273 against Tacoma, and .186 against the rest of the PCL… Max Stassi homered and drove in four runs Sunday against Sacramento… top closer James Hoyt was optioned back to Fresno by the Astros last week.
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.
- In the Rainiers game story, manager Pat Listach focused on the positives.
- The Mariners fell behind early and lost at Texas on Monday night, 6-3.
- Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook leads with an item on Pat Venditte, and confirms the M’s have extended their Player Development Contract with Class-A Clinton for two more years.
- The New York Mets and Las Vegas 51s renewed their PDC for two more years, and that means that the PCL affiliations will all remain the same through 2018. Here’s a massive chart from Baseball America if you want to follow the affiliation game.
PCL Game Reports:
- Reno blasted Sacramento, 6-1. Matt Koch delivered six shutout innings, and Carlos Rivero went 3-for-5 with a homer and four RBI.
- El Paso lost one to Las Vegas, 6-3, and now leads second-place Albuquerque by 4.5 games in the Pacific-South.
- The ‘Topes picked up a game by whipping Salt Lake, 9-4.
- Nashville toppled Iowa, 3-2, on an 11th-inning RBI single by B.J. Boyd.
- The Oklahoma City Dodgers activated a coach and played him at first base in an 11-4 loss to Memphis.
- Both Round Rock at Omaha and New Orleans at Colorado Springs were rained out. Since neither game mattered in the playoff races, they will not be made up.