The Tacoma Rainiers are back at it tonight, facing Reno at 6:35 for the second meeting of a six-game series. We had an unusual off day in the middle of a series yesterday.
Hopefully the off day didn’t cool the Rainiers bats. Tacoma scored 11 runs in the series opener on the Fourth, and the team has now won five of its last six games.
Leading the way was corner infielder Zach Green, who saw Brian O’Keefe hit three homers on Saturday in Tacoma and thought to himself, “I can do that!”
Green started in the first inning, lifting a two-run homer to right field to give the Rainiers an early lead that they never gave up.
He batted again in the second inning, and did it again: another opposite field shot, this one a deeper drive that came with two runners on base to make it 5-1.
After not batting in the third inning, Green came to the plate with a runner on in the fourth and launched a long two-run blast to left field, making it 7-2 Tacoma.
It was the fourth inning, Green had already homered three times, and driven in all seven Tacoma runs. He was having a huge game with more at-bats coming.
Alas, Green did not join Randy Bass of the 1977 Tacoma Twins as the only player in franchise history to hit four home runs in a game. He had just two more plate appearances, resulting in a strikeout and a walk.
A few fun facts from Green’s big night:
- The Rainiers had not had a player hit three home runs in a game since 2015 until O’Keefe did it on Saturday, and now it has happened twice in a span of three games.
- Green’s seven RBI is the most in a game since Chris Hermann drove in seven runs against El Paso early in the 2018 season.
- All three of Green’s home runs came off Reno starter Tommy Henry, who previously had pitched very well against Tacoma. He had allowed just five home runs all season going into the game.
We’ve got five games left here in Reno this week, and the ballpark here is a home run hitter’s paradise. Maybe we’ll see another Rainiers player with a multi-homer game.
YESTERDAY: The Rainiers were off yesterday. Tacoma spoiled the Reno Aces 4th of July game, pounding a dozen hits in an 11-4 series-opening victory. Zach Green homered in each of his first three at-bats, driving in seven runs as Tacoma built a 7-4 lead. Justus Sheffield pitched the first six innings, allowing four runs (although two scored on a wind-blown pop fly home run). The Rainiers bullpen of Fernando Abad, Patrick Weigel, and Matt Brash kept the Aces off the scoreboard in the final three innings.
TODAY: Tacoma Rainiers (33-45) at Reno Aces (41-38), 6:35.
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Arizona Diamondbacks.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Gil Velazquez.
SEASON SERIES: Reno leads, 7-6.
PITCHERS: RHP Chris Mazza (1-0, 0.00) at RHP Dan Straily (2-3, 7.44)
ROSTER MOVES: Prior to the start of the series on Monday, infielder Cesar Izturis Jr. was transferred back to the Arizona Complex League, and Kyle Lewis‘s rehabilitation assignment was transferred to Everett.
HOT HITTERS: Jarred Kelenic has hit safely in nine of his last ten games… Erick Mejia drove in the winning run in extra innings in back-to-back games on Wednesday and Thursday… Forrest Wall has reached base safely in 16 straight games… Brian O’Keefe has hit safely in five of his last six games, going 10-for-25 with five home runs and eight RBI.
OPPONENT NEWS: Reno just played a six-game home-and-home against Sacramento. They went 1-2 against them at home, and then 2-1 at Sacramento… Jake McCarthy is back in Triple-A, where he is hitting .367 for the season (he’s hit .228 in the big leagues with Arizona this year)… Dominic Fletcher has a five-game hitting streak… Pavin Smith was recently optioned to Triple-A by the Diamondbacks; he has never played against Tacoma before… the Aces are taking a look at former Pittsburgh Pirates starting shortstop Cole Tucker.
BROADCAST: All games will be broadcast free on a live audio stream which is available right here.
Unfortunately, there is no traditional terrestrial radio station carrying the games at this time.
PCL SCOREBOARD: Follow all league games in real-time with links to broadcasts and Gameday screens right here.
- After taking a week off, Rainiers Notes are back in The News Tribune.
- The Mariners won in San Diego yesterday, completing a two-game sweep. On Monday they hammered the Padres, 8-2, with Cal Raleigh driving in four runs.
- Congratulations to Marcus Wilson, who got his first major league hit on Monday. There are some details on it in this notebook.
- No Mariners appear in this week’s edition of the Baseball America Prospect Hot Sheet, but whatever, here it is anyway.