Tacoma beat the Las Vegas Aviators on Wednesday night, 8-7, and broke the franchise home run record while they were at it.
The Rainiers hit three home runs, raising the season total to 191. This is now the highest single-season total in Tacoma’s franchise history, which dates to 1960.
The previous record was set last year. Home run totals have increased across the sport over the last decade, a result of a combination of rabbit baseballs and changes to swing mechanics and hitting goals.
Derek Hill’s two-run homer in the top of the fourth inning tied the record. Five innings later, Kyle Lewis boke the record with a go-ahead drive in the top of the ninth.
If we had chosen to save the baseball for a non-existent collection of Rainiers artifacts, it would have been… soggy. Lewis’s record-setting blast landed in the swimming pool at Las Vegas Ballpark, and was retrieved by an Aviators fan who was taking a dip.
Tacoma tacked on home run No. 191 a couple batters later, when Luis Torrens pulled a blast to left field for a turned-out-to-be-necessary insurance run.
The win raised the Rainiers record to 66-71 – the closest the team has been to the .500 marks since the squad was 5-10 on April 21. The .500 mark is still attainable – just have to go 9-4 from here on out!
YESTERDAY: Tacoma catcher Luis Torrens went 4-for-4 including a crucial ninth inning homer as the Rainiers won in Las Vegas on Wednesday night, 8-7. Las Vegas tied the game 6-6 on a three-run homer by Jordan Diaz with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning, but the Rainiers responded with solo homers by Kyle Lewis and Torrens in the top of the ninth. Vegas hit three singles, scored a run and had the tying and winning runners on base in the bottom of the ninth before Nick Ramirez struck out Luis Barrera to end it. Tacoma starter Konner Wade lasted six innings and allowed two runs.
TODAY: Tacoma Rainiers (66-71) at Las Vegas Aviators (67-70), 7:05.
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: Oakland A’s.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Fran Riordan
SEASON SERIES: Las Vegas leads, 12-8.
PITCHERS: LHP Tommy Milone (3-1, 2.16) at LHP Hogan Harris (0-2, 9.00)
Milone was scratched from his last start with soreness, and isn’t likely to pitch more than two innings today.
ROSTER MOVES: None today as of posting time.
HOT HITTERS: Mason McCoy has reached base safely in 19 of his last 20 games… Brian O’Keefe has hit safely in seven of his last ten games, going 12-for-40 (.300)… Jonathan Villar has homered twice and driven in eight runs during a six-game hitting streak… Jarred Kelenic has a seven-game hitting streak… Marcus Wilson has hit safely in four straight, as has Forrest Wall.
OPPONENT NEWS: Las Vegas returns home from a 12-game road trip. It started in Reno, where the Aviators missed an opportunity to gain in the standings by losing four of six. They rebounded by going 4-2 at Sacramento… the Aviators don’t currently have any former Rainiers players, but they do still have the Lake Tapps native and Charles Wright Academy alum Nate Mondou… Kevin Smith has a nine-game hitting streak… 22-year-old Jordan Diaz was recently promoted to Triple-A and is considered a good hitting prospect.
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.
- Reno’s last two home games against Sacramento have been cancelled due to poor air quality resulting from forest fire smoke, and now they have moved the next two games to Sutter Health Park in Sacramento where they will be played with no fans in attendance. Apparently they are not making up the missed games, despite Reno being in a pennant race (not much of one, to be honest – they have a nine game lead with two weeks to go).
- The Mariners hit three home runs and beat the Padres yesterday, 6-1. The team is off today and starts a ten-game road trip on Friday.
- Julio Rodriguez homered (26) and stole a base (25), joining the “25-25 Club” which I did not know was a club – I’m familiar with 20-20, and 30-30, and 40-40… I guess everyone has a club these days. That’s it for today – I’m going outside to yell at a cloud.