The Long Road Begins In Vegas

The Rainiers open a stretch of 18-out-of-22 games on the road with a 7:05 game tonight at the brand new Las Vegas Ballpark.

Tacoma comes into Vegas hot, having won back-to-back series at home and seven of the last nine games overall. The Rainiers have pulled within two games of .500.

It’s going to be fun to check out the newest ballpark in Triple-A Baseball, which some are saying is now the best. I’ll be the judge of that lol.

I’m planning to take some ballpark pictures and post them here – hopefully on Monday – so you can check it out for yourself.

RAINIERS DAILY

YESTERDAY: Tommy Milone recovered from a rocky first inning, and Mallex Smith hit a go-ahead three-run homer in the sixth as Tacoma took down Reno in a lengthy affair on Friday night, 8-5. Smith was 3-for-4 with another stolen base. The Rainiers won the series, three games to one.

ROSTER MOVES: Recently optioned reliever Chasen Bradford is reporting to Tacoma today, and the Rainiers already had nine relievers, so Robinson Leyer drew the short straw and was transferred to Double-A Arkansas. He’ll probably be back later this season.

TODAY: Tacoma (17-19) at Las Vegas (21-15), 7:05.

OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Oakland A’s.

OPPOSING MANAGER: Fran Riordan.

SEASONS SERIES: 0-0.

PITCHERS: LHP Justus Sheffield (1-1, 3.76) at LHP Tyler Alexander (0-2, 7.52)

HOT HITTERS: Ian Miller has a six-game hitting streak, collecting ten hits and scoring eight runs during the streak. Miller leads the PCL with 14 doubles… Tim Lopes has hit safely in his last five games, drawing five walks and scoring seven runs during the stretch… Mallex Smith has hit safely in six of his seven games for Tacoma, with multiple hits in five games.

OPPONENT NEWS: Las Vegas just took three-of-four from Salt Lake. After starting the season 13-2, the Aviators have cooled off and gone 8-13 since… Julio Mateo is one of the most exciting players in the league because he runs like his hair is on fire and thinks triple any time he makes contact. He’s red hot at the moment with a nine-game hitting streak… rehabilitating A’s outfielder/infielder Mark Canha is with the Aviators.

FAMILIAR FACES: The only former Rainiers player on the Vegas roster is reliever Dean Kiekhefer, who is currently on the injured list.

BROADCAST: The pregame show starts at 6:50 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:

In the PCL:

  • Salt Lake scored four runs in the top of the ninth to tie Las Vegas, 7-7, then won it in the 11th on Luis Rengifo‘s RBI single. The Bees avoided being swept.
  • Albuquerque hit two solo homers and won a rare 2-1 game at El Paso.
  • Fresno was going for the four-game road sweep at Sacramento, but the River Cats won the final game in 10 innings, 7-6.
  • You don’t want to see Iowa on your schedule right now. Phillip Evans hit a three-run homer in the top of the first inning and the I-Cubs made it ten wins in 11 games with a 7-4 victory at Memphis.
  • Tyrone Taylor‘s pinch-hit three-run homer in the seventh inning spurred a 9-8 comeback win for San Antonio over New Orleans.
  • PCL RBI leader Yordan Alvarez added three more to his total in Round Rock’s 8-7 win at Omaha.
  • Nashville at Oklahoma City was suspended by rain in the fourth inning with the Dodgers leading 4-0 and they will continue it on… August 20? Really?
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