The roster for the Tacoma Rainiers keeps on changing, and some fresh faces have entered the picture. This week the team is adding three players who are not just new to Tacoma, but they are new to the Mariners organization. Let’s take a look:
Outfielder Trey Amburgey (pronounced AM-bur-ghee) was acquired from the Cincinnati Reds in a trade for cash considerations. Amburgey has played in two major league games, for the New York Yankees last season. This year he has been playing for the Reds Triple-A affiliate Louisville of the International League. The 27-year-old was batting .226 with a .302 OBP and a .429 slugging percentage in the IL. Amburgey, who is from Lake Worth, Florida, has some pop: he hit a career-best 22 home runs for Triple-A Scranton in 2019.
Reliever Chris Mazza has been signed after his recent release from the Tampa Bay organization. Mazza, 32, has pitched in the major leagues for three different teams: the Mets, the Red Sox, and the Rays. This year he has been slowed down by a back injury, appearing in just two games for Tampa and eight for their Triple-A Durham affiliate, totally 18.1 innings pitched. When fully healthy Mazza is a multiple-inning reliever who has posted good strikeout numbers in Triple-A. It’s a return to the Mariners organization for Mazza: the Double-A Arkansas affiliate was short on pitching at the tail end of the 2018 season, and Mazza was acquired from an independent team to make four starts down the stretch and help Arkansas finish the season.
The third brand new player is more of a mystery man: left-handed pitcher Brennan Bernardino was acquired from the Tijuana franchise in the Mexican League, where he has been working as a starter. In nine starts for Tijuana, Bernardino went 5-0 with a 3.07 ERA and 49 strikeouts in 44 innings. The Rainiers have an opening in the rotation and Bernardino may be tabbed to fill it, but all 175 of his career appearances in the affiliated minor leagues have come as a reliever. He’s been pitching in Mexico since 2019 – prior to that, the Southern California native worked as a reliever in the Cincinnati Reds organization and, briefly, the Cleveland system.
Look for Rainiers manager Tim Federowicz to begin mixing in the new players tonight.
YESTERDAY: Salt Lake scored eight runs in the top of the fifth inning and cruised to a 10-3 win over Tacoma in the Rainiers homestand opener at Cheney Stadium. It appeared that after four innings with Salt Lake leading 1-0 we were in for a pitcher’s duel, but the Bees sent 11 batters to the plate and had eight hits in the fifth. Salt Lake starter Jake Kalish went five innings, picking up his PCL-leading eighth win and maintaining a league-leading 2.54 ERA. Brian O’Keefe homered for the Rainiers.
TODAY: Salt Lake Bees (35-38) at Tacoma Rainiers (28-44), 6:05.
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Lou Marson.
SEASON SERIES: Salt Lake leads, 10-6.
PITCHERS: LHP Reid Detmers (0-0, –) at LHP Justus Sheffield (1-5, 8.00)
This is the first minor league start of the year for Detmers, who was recently optioned to Salt Lake despite having pitched a no-hitter against the Tampa Bay Rays on May 11. The catcher who caught that no-hitter, Chad Wallach, is also with Salt Lake right now.
ROSTER MOVES: To make room for the newly acquired Carlos Santana on the major league roster, yesterday the Mariners optioned infielder Drew Ellis to Tacoma. Today Seattle called up Marcus Wilson and Sam Haggerty, placed Taylor Trammell on the injured list (hamstring), and optioned Kevin Padlo to Tacoma.
HOT HITTERS: Sam Haggerty has reached base safely in his last 21 PCL games… Marcus Wilson has an .859 OPS in June… Jarred Kelenic has a five-game hitting streak… both Alex Blandino and Mason McCoy have reached base safely in nine straight games… Erick Mejia has a five-game hitting streak.
OPPONENT NEWS: Salt Lake has won three straight games, prior to that they had lost 11 of 12 including a six-game sweep in Albuquerque… infielder Kean Wong has a five-game hitting streak, with nine hits and seven RBI… Magneuris Sierra is hitting .329 in the month of June… the Bees have three former Rainiers in their bullpen: Jonathan Aro, Brian Moran, and Zack Weiss. Former Rainiers outfielder Dillon Thomas is expected to rejoin Salt Lake during this series.
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 beat Baltimore last night, 2-0, on a game-winning hit by Jesse Winker.
- Mitch Haniger and Kyle Lewis are making progress in their recoveries from injury. Expect both to make extended rehabilitation appearances for Tacoma.
- For subscribers to The Athletic, here’s a really good story on the Oakland A’s giving major league broadcasting opportunity to a handful of the announcers who work for their minor league affiliates. Gotta love Bob Hards, the 71-year-old rookie!
- In the PCL, Albuquerque won last night on a walk-off grand slam.