One swing of the bat can really change the general outlook, you guys.
Yesterday things were looking grim. Tacoma had lost to Salt Lake on Thursday, 14-1, and then got postponed on Friday to necessitate a Saturday doubleheader. Then the Rainiers lost the first game of the doubleheader 12-0. That’s, uh, 26-1 in two games. That general outlook was not good.
The second game of the doubleheader turned into an enjoyable pitcher’s duel – especially after the prior two games. New Rainiers starter Daniel Ponce de Leon pitched five shutout innings of one-hit ball in his Tacoma debut, but the Rainiers also had just one hit through five.
We finally got to the seventh (and final) inning, and it was 0-0. Penn Murfee pitched a 1-2-3 top of the inning, setting up the Rainiers for a possible walkoff. The only thing is, Tacoma had to score a run, and that had been a problem. The Rainiers hadn’t scored in 19 innings, last plating a run in the third inning on Thursday.
Mike Ford took care of the issue himself. Leading off the bottom of the seventh, Ford yanked an Andrew Wantz pitch deep down the right field line for a game-ending home run, and a 1-0 Rainiers win.
In the end, Tacoma split a doubleheader in which it did not score a run until the last swing of the last game. Crazy.
Hopefully that will get the offense going for the series finale today. The great pitching from Ponce de Leon and Murfee was fun to watch, and that could carry over as well.
YESTERDAY: Tacoma scored just one run all day, on the last swing of the day, and managed to split a doubleheader with Salt Lake. The Bees won the first game, 12-0, using a 15-hit attack while Cesar Valdez and Kyle Barraclough combined on a six-hit shutout. The Rainiers won the nightcap, 1-0, on Mike Ford‘s walk-off home run. Daniel Ponce de Leon and Penn Murfee combined to pitch a one-hit shutout for the Rainiers.
TODAY: Salt Lake Bees (3-2) at Tacoma Rainiers (2-3), 1:35 PT.
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Lou Marson.
SEASON SERIES: Salt Lake leads, 3-2.
PITCHERS: LHP Kenny Rosenberg (0-0, 0.00) at RHP Darren McCaughan (0-0, 3.18)
McCaughan was the Rainiers opening day starter and will be the first starter to make two appearances this season.
ROSTER MOVES: The Rainiers have placed outfielder Taylor Trammell on the Injured List – we still don’t have word on his exact injury or the timeline; will pass that along when/if it’s available. Seattle has signed left-handed pitcher Nick Ramirez and he joins the Rainiers today – he’s a former infielder who converted to pitcher and has reached the majors with both Detroit and San Diego.
HOT HITTERS: Mike Ford has hit safely in three straight games, and Kevin Padlo is 4-for-8 over his last three games.
OPPONENT NEWS: Salt Lake has two members of the 2021 league champion Tacoma Rainiers on its roster: outfielder Dillon Thomas, and reliever Zack Weiss. Also, former Rainiers reliever Jonathan Aro is with the Bees. Salt Lake opening night starter Janson Junk attended Decatur High School in Federal Way, and Seattle U.
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.
- The Mariners had a dramatic win at Minnesota on Saturday, and improved to 2-0 on the season.
- Julio Rodriguez got his first major league hit, and it was part of the winning rally.
- It’s only two games but the M’s have done what we wanted them to do, Matt Calkins writes.
- Checking in on a division rival: the Las Vegas newspaper has a few notes on the Aviators.