Cano Debuts For Tacoma, Rainiers Win In Tenth

Monday night’s game at Cheney Stadium began as a Robinson Cano Watch, and it ended as a dramatic Tacoma victory.

Cano started at first base for the first time in his career, while playing in his first game since May 13. He singled in his first at-bat, an opposite field liner against rehabilitating Milwaukee Brewers starter Zach Davies. He grounded out his next two times up, before walking in the eighth inning, finishing the day 1-for-3.

He was tested quite a bit at first base.

There was a first-and-third, delayed double steal play where the runner from first got into a rundown as the man from third tried to score; Cano tagged the runner at first and threw home too late to prevent the lead runner from scoring.

There was one dig on a throw in the dirt, Cano made that play smoothly.

There was a rocket hit to him on a short hop; he missed that play but deflected the ball to the second baseman, and then regained his wits to cover first to try to receive the throw.

Everything else seemed to go just fine. After the game, Cano said that he is coming back to Tacoma today to be the designated hitter, and then he will play for Everett this weekend while the Rainiers are on the road.

The game was tied 1-1 after nine innings, so we went to the extra innings rules with the automatic runner placed at second base.

In the top of the tenth inning Sky Sox pinch-runner Quintin Berry tagged on a shallow fly to Ben Gamel in center, and scored with a nifty slide under the tag of catcher Cameron Rupp.

The Rainiers automatic runner was still standing at second base with two outs in the bottom of the tenth and it looked like the Rainiers were going to lose. But Sky Sox manager Rick Sweet went against “the book” by intentionally walking the hot-hitting Gamel to face Gordon Beckham. Beckham made them pay, blasting a game-ending two-run double off the right field fence.

It was a thrilling finish to a fun night at the ballpark.

Today’s early game ends the homestand, and Wednesday is an off day. The seven-game road trip starts Thursday in Salt Lake City, and our next blog update will come that afternoon.

RAINIERS ROUND-UP

YESTERDAY: The Rainiers took the lead in the series with a 3-2, 10-inning win over the Sky Sox. Gordon Beckham drove in all three Tacoma runs. Ross Detwiler had an excellent start, allowing one run over 6.1 innings pitched. Today’s game is the final ever between Tacoma and Colorado Springs, and Tacoma leads the all-time series 174-173.

TODAY: Colorado Springs (59-52) at Tacoma (56-57), 11:35 AM.

OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Milwaukee Brewers.

SEASONS SERIES: Tacoma leads, 2-1.

PITCHERS: RHP Alec Asher (5-3, 5.28) at RHP Rob Whalen (7-5, 4.69).

HOT HITTERS: Seth Mejias-Brean saw his 15-game hitting streak end yesterday… John Andreoli has reached base in 31 of his last 32 games… Dan Vogelbach had his 11-game hitting streak end yesterday, but his streak of reaching base in 27 straight PCL games is alive… Ben Gamel is 9-for-21 with a homer and four RBI in five games since being sent to Tacoma.

OPPONENT NEWS: Colorado Springs is in a race with Oklahoma City to defend its American-North division title; the Sky Sox are two games behind… they have struggled since the All-Star Break, going 10-13 with the team constantly affected by Milwaukee Brewers roster moves… catcher Christian Bethancourt is on a home run spree, hitting eight in 22 games since July 1… Dylan Moore homered twice on Friday and has a seven-game hitting streak.

FAMILIAR FACES: Sky Sox manager Rick Sweet is from Longview and is a former Mariners catcher.

BROADCAST: The pregame show starts at 11:20 on South Sound Talk 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.

Links:

Around the PCL (home team in CAPS):

Fresno 12, MEMPHIS 3 – incredibly, all 12 Fresno runs scored on homers. Jack Mayfield hit a grand slam, A.J. Reed and Yordan Alvarez hit three-run shots, and Kyle Tucker hit a two-run tater.

RENO 6, Oklahoma City 5 – the Aces hit three home runs in the seventh inning. One of them was Kevin Cron‘s 20th of the year; he’s hitting .332-20-82.

NASHVILLE 6, Sacramento 0 – A’s top prospect Jesus Luzardo pitched five shutout innings in his Triple-A debut, allowing eight hits but no walks. Story from MiLB.com.

EL PASO 10, Round Rock 3 – Padres prospect Cal Quantrill made his Triple-A debut, pitching six innings and allowing two runs to earn the win. Luis Urias smacked a two-run homer in the first inning.

OMAHA 5, Salt Lake 4 (5) – a rain-shortened game that was called with one out in the bottom of the fifth; the Bees will remember this one if they miss the playoffs by one game. Story from Omaha.

New Orleans 7, ALBUQUERQUE 2 – UW product Jeff Brigham delivered six strong innings, striking out seven and walking one to improve to 3-0, 2.54 since being promoted to Triple-A. The Albuquerque paper has a story on Noel Cuevas and his extended stint in the majors.

Las Vegas 6, IOWA 1 – old buddy Patrick Kivlehan ripped a three-run homer in the fourth inning to put Vegas out in front.

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