You wish we would have known ahead of time. I’m pretty sure the Rainiers marketing department could have had a lot of fun if they knew that August 12-13 was going to be Miracle Comeback Weekend for the Rainiers.
On Saturday the Rainiers staged back-to-back comebacks: four runs in the bottom of the ninth to tie, three runs in the bottom of the tenth to tie, and a run in the 11th to win.
Sunday was a different sort of comeback, but still a very unexpected one.
The Rainiers trailed 1-0 in the bottom of the ninth inning. There were two outs, no one was on base, and Zach Shank had no balls and two strikes on him. We were a strike away from getting shut out.
But Shank pulled Jimmy Sherfy‘s next pitch into left field for a clean single.
Then Gordon Beckham was hit on the arm by a pitch, and the Rainiers had the tying runner on second base and the winning runner at first.
Danny Muno worked a full count, but he popped up the payoff pitch to shallow left field. Game over, right?
Yup, it was game over – but not how we expected.
Reno shortstop Jack Reinheimer went back on the ball, and appeared to be calling for it. Left fielder Zach Borenstein came in on it, but was not going full speed – he appeared to think Reinheimer was going to grab it.
At the last moment Reinheimer pulled away from it, Borenstein wasn’t there, and the ball plopped to the ground.
Since it was a full count with two outs, Shank and Beckham were running on the pitch. Beckham scored all of the way from first base, and the Rainiers had a stunning 2-1 win.
While the Rainiers celebrated their third straight win, I couldn’t help but wonder about the playoff chances for the Reno Aces. They came to Tacoma on Friday in first place, with a one-game lead Fresno. Now they have choked away two leads (including one big one) and are a game behind Fresno.
Tacoma has never swept a series from Reno, in 35 chances since the Aces joined the league in 2009. Will we see the first one tonight?
Yesterday: Danny Muno saw his pop fly to shallow left field fall in for a walk-off two-run double and the Rainiers won their third straight game against Reno on Sunday, 2-1. Muno has two homers and a game-winning single in this series. Bryan Evans and Jeanmar Gomez each pitched well in their Tacoma debuts, as did Ernesto Frieri in his second game with the club.
Roster Moves: To activate starting pitcher Bryan Evans yesterday, the Rainiers transferred Dario Pizzano to Double-A Arkansas. Today the Mariners called up Thyago Vieira and optioned Christian Bergman to Tacoma.
Today: Reno (68-53) at Tacoma (61-60), 7:05.
Opponent Affiliation: Arizona Diamondbacks.
Season Series: Reno leads, 8-6.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Taylor Clarke (1-1, 7.50) at RHP Cody Martin (0-0, 4.14).
Hot Rainiers: Shawn O’Malley and Dan Vogelbach each have five-game hitting streaks… Danny Muno has homered twice in this series contests… Mike Marjama has eight RBI over his first six games with Tacoma.
Look Out For: Christian Walker has hit six home runs during a 12-game hitting streak, and he is now tied for the PCL lead with 30 homers on the year… Zach Borenstein had back-to-back two-homer games on Wednesday and Thursday, and he just won the Player of the Week award… Ildemaro Vargas has gone 21-for-45 during a ten-game hitting streak.
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.
- MiLB.com has a story on yesterday’s Rainiers game, and it focuses on the no-hit bid by Reno starter Jake Buchanan. Dan Vogelbach spoiled it with a one-out single in the seventh inning.
- Lookout Landing has an article on new Rainiers catcher Mike Marjama.
- The Mariners have collapsed, getting swept at home in a four-game series by the Angels. Seattle is back under .500 for the year, and they have lost 14 of the last 21 home games. Three takeaways from the game.
- On the plus side, it looks like reliever David Phelps isn’t going to be out for long.
PCL Game Reports:
- Former NL MVP Ryan Howard joined the Albuquerque lineup, and in his first game the Isotopes beat Fresno, 22-1. They had 24 hits, scored in six consecutive innings, and had a nine-run seventh.
- Sacramento scored early and hung on to beat Salt Lake, 5-3.
- El Paso lost at home to Las Vegas, 7-4, as Jayce Boyd drove in four runs.
- Memphis clinched the American-South division title with a 12-7 win at Nashville. Memphis has won 80 games already.
- Brian Flynn pitched deep into the game as Omaha topped Iowa, 5-2. Omaha goes for a series sweep today.
- New Orleans took down Colorado Springs in eleven innings, 8-4, despite a home run by hot-hitting Lewis Brinson.
- Round Rock and Oklahoma City split a doubleheader. Dodgers top prospect Walker Buehler pitched two perfect innings with five strikeouts in the second game, earning his first professional save.