When we look back on the 2016 Tacoma Rainiers, I think this will be remembered as the “home” team.
This club had another great comeback home win on Sunday, scoring four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning. Tacoma was down 7-4 going to the last of the ninth, and they won it 8-7 on Rob Brantly‘s game-winning two-run double.
It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a Tacoma club win like this at home: the Rainiers are 45-26 at Cheney Stadium, going into today’s home finale.
The best team in the Rainiers/Mariners era (since the 1995 affiliation) is the 2001 team, which went 85-59 on the year. That team went 48-23 at home, a smidge better than this year’s club.
The way Tacoma has secured the home wins this year has been truly thrilling: nine of the 45 home wins have been walk-offs. That’s 20%!
Of the nine walk-offs, in six of them the team was trailing going into the bottom of the ninth inning (or tenth, in one case).
It’s been a real thrill for the fans – and you guys have come out in droves.
We have a chance to break our all-time attendance record today. The 2011 announced attendance was 378,518 in the first year of the renovated stadium.
We’re going into today’s game with a season attendance of 372,439, and need 6,080 to break the record. It’s going to be close.
Thanks for the great support all season. Playoffs start Wednesday!
Yesterday: Tacoma had its biggest ninth inning comeback of the season, scoring four runs to beat Reno, 8-7. Rob Brantly‘s two-out, two-run double was the game winner.
Roster Moves: The Rainiers lost Ryan Strausborger to a pulled hamstring on Sunday. Today Tacoma adds outfielder Eric Filia from Everett to take his spot. Reliever David Rollins was called up by the Mariners yesterday.
Today: Reno (76-67) at Tacoma (80-62-1), 1:35.
Opponent Affiliation: Arizona Diamondbacks.
Season Series: Reno leads, 11-4.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Billy Buckner (1-1, 6.00) at RHP Joe Wieland (13-6, 5.54)
Wieland needs a win to tie Ty Blach of Sacramento for the PCL lead. He can also become Tacoma’s first 14-game winner since Denny Stark went 14-2 and won PCL Pitcher of the Year in 2001.
Hot Rainiers: Dan Vogelbach has reached base via hit or walk in 29 straight games, and he has drawn a walk in 24 of the 29 games… Mike Freeman has reached base 22 times in his last ten games… Paul Fry has allowed one earned run in his last 19 innings pitched.
Look Out For: Dan Rohlfing has a 12-game hitting streak which is the longest of his career… Ildemaro Vargas has gone 18-for-36 against Tacoma this season.
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 on the broadcast for the final time this season.
PCL Scoreboard: Follow all Pacific Coast League games in real-time with links to Gameday screens right here.
- The Rainiers game story focuses on shortstop Tyler Smith.
- The Mariners lost to the Angels, 4-2, and their playoff hopes are fading fast.
- Angels starter Matt Shoemaker – a former PCL stalwart with Salt Lake – was hit in the head by a line drive. John McGrath has a column on the situation.
- Lauren Smith pinch-hit for Bob Dutton on the Mariners Notebook.
PCL Game Reports:
- El Paso is limping to the finish line. Last night the Chihuahuas lost to Albuquerque, 8-5. Starter Frank Garces worked just one inning in preparation for the opening game of the playoffs on Wednesday.
- Salt Lake toppled Las Vegas in the 11th inning, 4-3.
- Jon Singleton‘s grand slam helped Fresno to a 5-4 win at Sacramento.
- New player Cody Bellinger homered twice as Oklahoma City won at Omaha.
- Drew Rucinski leads the league in losses, but yesterday he pitched a gem in Iowa’s 5-1 win over Colorado Springs.
- Memphis won a rain-shortened game at Round Rock.
- Ex-Rainiers outfielder Cole Gillespie had the key hit as New Orleans beat Nashville. The Sounds have lost three starting pitchers to call-ups before the playoffs: Daniel Mengden, Raul Alcantara, and Jahrel Cotton have all been promoted.
Last regular season game of the year today!