Curto, Tacoma Rainiers

Twenty Years Ago Today

Today I was awakened by the buzzing of my cell phone. It was a text message from a friend, doing some early morning trash-talking about today’s college football slate.

Twenty years ago to this date I didn’t have a cell phone. I was trying to sleep in to be rested for the night’s broadcast, because it was going to be a big one: Game One of the PCL Championship Series, between the Tacoma Rainiers and the New Orleans Zephyrs. The Rainiers had just won a thrilling playoff series against Sacramento to reach the finals, and were looking for Tacoma’s first league title since 1978.

I couldn’t sleep in, though. The phone kept ringing in my hotel room in Metairie, Louisiana. I ignored it the first two times but finally answered the third time – at this point, it must be important. That’s when I learned that the world had changed.

Terrorists had attacked the World Trade Center in New York City. There was another hijacking and a failed attack on the Pentagon. We were at war, and it felt like the enemy was among us.

Our little baseball game was postponed. As we learned more about the severity of the attacks, and the thousands of lives lost, it became clear that we weren’t going to be playing. Two days later the league cancelled the Championship Series and named Tacoma and New Orleans co-champions.

Air travel was grounded. The Rainiers were marooned in a hotel on the outskirts of New Orleans with nothing to do and nowhere to go. We were there for six days before air travel was reinstated and we were able to fly home on a plane that was so empty it was eerie.

Our nation has recovered and life has moved on, but it’s important to remember the lives lost and the heroic actions of first responders on this date twenty years ago.

The Tacoma Rainiers lost their little baseball game to Sacramento on Friday night, ending a five-game win streak. The River Cats pitched well, limiting Tacoma’s hot offense to just six hits and three runs.

Tacoma still has a two-game lead over both Sugar Land and Reno with ten games to go before the Regular Season Champion is determined.


YESTERDAY: Sacramento put together a four-run rally in the top of the seventh inning and beat Tacoma on Friday night, 5-3. The Rainiers saw their five-game win streak end, as well as their streak of seven straight home wins. Robert Dugger limited Sacramento to one run over the first six innings before getting charged with three runs during the seventh-inning rally. Taylor Trammell had two hits, including a long RBI double to the wall in center.

TODAY: Sacramento (48-59) at Tacoma (65-45), 7:05.



SEASON SERIES: Tacoma leads, 12-8.

PITCHERS: RHP Matt Shoemaker (2-3, 8.10) at RHP Ryan Weber (2-1, 3.51)

HOT HITTERSJantzen Witte has gone 70-for-210 (.333) over his last 52 games… Donovan Walton has a seven-game hitting streak, and he has nine homers in his last 24 games… Jack Reinheimer had his streak of reaching base in 26 straight games end last night… Marcus Wilson has gone 17-for-50 with three homers and ten walks over his last 14 games.

OPPONENT NEWS: Sacramento split a six-game home series against Salt Lake that included the franchise’s first nine inning no-hitter last Friday… Will Toffey has a six-game hitting streak… former Rainier Braden Bishop hit two game-winning home runs – one a walk-off – when Tacoma and Sacramento split a six-game series August 19-24… Wyatt Mathisen was released by Tacoma on August 24 and signed with Sacramento just six days later.

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.

TRIPLE-A WEST SCOREBOARD: Follow all league games in real-time with links to Gameday screens right here.


  • The Mariners survived first MLB home runs by both Henry Ramos and Seth Beer, beating the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-4 on Friday. Tom Murphy homered twice for the M’s, who are now one game out of the last AL Wild Card spot.
  • Ryan Divish looks at the Wild Card hunt and plays the schedule game. Also, it sounds like Jake Fraley may start a rehabilitation assignment with Tacoma today.
  • Julio Rodriguez had a huge game for Double-A Arkansas last night.

Listen to every home and away Tacoma Rainiers game for free HERE. You can also download the MiLB First Pitch app for a free and easy one-click listening experience at home, work or in your car. Watch an HD video broadcast of every game with an MiLB.TV subscription. Use code: RAINIERS to save $10 on an annual subscription.

About the Tacoma Rainiers

The Tacoma Rainiers are the Triple-A affiliate of the Seattle Mariners. The Rainiers are a member of the Triple-A West. Tacoma has been a Mariners affiliate since establishing the Rainiers moniker in 1995.

Find more information and purchase single game tickets here. Questions regarding season tickets can be directed to

The most up-to-date news and notes about the Tacoma Rainiers and Cheney Stadium can be found at, or by following the Rainiers on Twitter (@RainiersLand), Instagram (@tacomarainiers) and liking the team on Facebook.

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