You can spend a lifetime watching baseball and still never figure it out.
One day after the Rainiers played nine innings to a 0-0 tie before losing in the tenth at Sugar Land, the same two teams combined for 20 runs on 32 hits in Tacoma’s 13-7 victory.
The offensive assault began immediately: the Rainiers scored four runs in the top of the first inning, sending nine batters to the plate and connecting for four hits. In the ten-inning loss on Tuesday, Tacoma scored one run on two hits – all game.
The Rainiers were in double-digit runs and hits by the fourth inning. They kept on swinging it, finishing the game with 18 hits.
Tacoma even hit three home runs in the PCL’s most pitcher-friendly ballpark. Drew Ellis, Andrew Knapp, and Jarred Kelenic each went deep. The Rainiers also stroked eight doubles.
Ballpark conditions were about the same as they were on Tuesday night: game-time temperature around 90, humid, strong wind blowing directly in from right field… and this time the ball was flying all over the place. Sugar Land launched four homers in the losing cause, making a total of seven home runs between the two teams.
Unfortunately, we were unable to broadcast the game due to network problems at the ballpark in Sugar Land. I’m hopeful that the problems will be resolved today, but it’s out of my hands (and way over my head).
YESTERDAY: Tacoma banged out 18 hits – 11 for extra bases – and ended a four-game losing streak with a 13-7 win at Sugar Land on Wednesday night. Erick Mejia was 4-for-5 with three runs scored and three RBI. Drew Ellis had his first three hits as a Rainier, including a home run, and drove in five runs. Andrew Knapp hit two doubles and a homer, driving in two. Jarred Kelenic was 3-for-6 with an opposite-field home run.
TODAY: Tacoma Rainiers (27-40) at Sugar Land Space Cowboys (29-39), 5:05 (Pacific).
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Houston Astros.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Mickey Storey.
SEASON SERIES: Sugar Land leads, 6-2.
PITCHERS: LHP Justus Sheffield (1-5, 8.51) at RHP J.P. France (2-3, 5.16)
ROSTER MOVES: We ended up having a handful of roster moves before yesterday’s game. Veteran reliever Jacob Barnes was signed as a free agent; he was recently released by Detroit after pitching in 22 major league games this season. Tacoma placed outfielder Forrest Wall and reliever Kyle Bird on the injured list. Outfielder Miguel Perez was summoned once again from the Arizona Complex League.
HOT HITTERS: Forrest Wall has reached base safely in 11 straight games, and he has a .409 on-base percentage so far this month… Sam Haggerty has reached base safely in his last 17 PCL games… Marcus Wilson has reached base safely in 13 straight games. He’s homered in four of his last eight games, and he leads the team with 12.
OPPONENT NEWS: Sugar Land had a seven-game winning streak end on Saturday in Round Rock, and then they lost on Sunday too… Corey Julks has an 11-game hitting streak, getting exactly one hit in each game. Does that qualify as a hot hitter? He’s 11-for-43 (.256 average) during the streak… the Space Cowboys have received a big lift from infielder Enmanuel Valdez, who was called up from Double-A (where he was batting .357) on June 7. He homered twice in his Triple-A debut and added a three-homer game last week at Round Rock… Sugar Land just acquired former Rainiers outfielder Dillon Thomas on a waiver claim from the Angels… Kent native Taylor Jones is currently rehabilitating a back injury with Sugar Land.
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.
- Tacoma will be facing rehabilitating Houston Astros starter Jake Odorizzi on Friday night.
- The Mariners have found the cure for their hitting struggles: the Oakland A’s pitching staff.
- Injured outfielder Mitch Haniger hopes to return to action in July. He says he’ll probably need an extended rehabilitation stint to get his timing back.