Tonight is the second-to-last home game of the year, and our final night game at Cheney Stadium this season/year/decade.
The Rainiers were unable to play spoiler last night, dropping a 3-0 decision to the Aviators. In fact, Las Vegas boosted its lead in the Pac-South to three games over second place El Paso, with ten to play.
Meanwhile, the Rainiers were mathematically eliminated by Sacramento. We knew it was coming eventually. Tacoma can still try to finish in second place, as the club trails Reno by just 1.5 games.
Las Vegas has thrown major league pitchers at the Rainiers the past two nights, with Matt Harvey and Sean Manaea taking the bump. That will not be the case tonight, when an at-the-appropriate-level Triple-A pitcher starts for the Aviators.
Let’s have some fun at Cheney for these final two homes games!
YESTERDAY: Sean Manaea dominated for seven innings, allowing just two hits while striking out 12 in a 3-0 win over Tacoma on Friday night. The Rainiers matched their season low of two hits while being shut out for the eighth time this season.
ROSTER MOVES: Today we anticipate the arrival of outfielder Braden Bishop to continue his rehabilitation assignment, which began at Class-A Modesto earlier this week. Reliever Zac Grotz was optioned to Tacoma by the Mariners today, who had to make room for Felix Hernandez to come off the injured list.
TODAY: Las Vegas (78-52) at Tacoma (58-71), 7:05.
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Oakland A’s.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Fran Riordan.
SEASON SERIES: Las Vegas leads, 6-4.
PITCHERS: RHP Parker Dunshee (3-4, 5.23) at RHP Mike Wright (2-3, 5.03)
HOT HITTERS: Jaycob Brugman has hit five homers and driven in 16 runs over his last nine games… Joseph Odom had his five-game hitting streak end last night… Jordan Pacheco had his four-game hitting streak end as well.
OPPONENT NEWS: Las Vegas just swept Reno in a three-gamer and has won seven straight, scoring 58 runs during the win streak… Sheldon Neuse has a ten-game hitting streak, with five homers during the streak… Franklin Barreto, Seth Brown, and Mark Payton each have eight-game hitting streaks, and Payton has homered six times during his streak.
FAMILIAR FACES: Las Vegas pitching coach and PCL veteran Rick Rodriguez pitched for the Tacoma Tigers from 1983 to 1987. Two ex-Rainiers are on the Las Vegas injured list: lefty reliever Dean Kiekhefer and catcher Cameron Rupp.
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.
- The News Tribune dubbed last night’s Rainiers game a “strikeout fest.”
- The Mariners called up Justus Sheffield from Double-A Arkansas yesterday, and are activating Felix Hernandez from the injured list today, so they moved Wade LeBlanc to the bullpen.
- Sheffield’s first major league start looked a lot like many of his Triple-A starts for Tacoma earlier this year. Ryan Divish has a thorough report.
- Minor league players enjoyed Felix’s recent rehab starts for Everett and Tacoma.
- Reliever Chasen Bradford underwent ‘Tommy John’ surgery and is out for at least a year. That and many more injury updates here.
- New in the PCL: Sacramento’s ballpark is no longer Raley Field – after twenty years, they have a new naming partner. Thank goodness it’s a 15-year deal.
In the PCL:
- Sacramento scored eight runs over the final three innings and won at El Paso, 11-5. The River Cats magic number to clinch the Pac-North over Reno is down to two. Meanwhile, El Paso dropped three games behind Las Vegas in the Pac-South.
- Reno got an early three-run homer from Andy Young and hung on to beat Salt Lake, 7-5.
- Yadiel Hernandez had four hits including his 29th home run as Fresno picked up an 8-2 win at Albuquerque.
- Round Rock took down New Orleans, 3-2, on Lorenzo Quintana‘s game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning.
- San Antonio had an early two-run homer from Tyler Austin in a 4-2 win over Oklahoma City. The Missions remain 1.5 games behind Round Rock in the American-South.
- Tim Federowicz hit a two-run single in the top of the ninth inning to lead Nashville to a 3-1 win at Iowa.
- Memphis got seven shutout innings from Austin Warner in a 9-1 win over Omaha, with Andrew Knizner going 4-for-4 with two solo homers.