It was cold and damp at Cheney Stadium last night, where the Tacoma Rainiers hosted the El Paso Chihuahuas in the opener of a six-game series.
So cold that the pitchers couldn’t throw strikes.
That’s the only explanation I can come up with, the cold. Why else would these professional baseball players, men who have played the game their entire lives and who are on the brink of the majors leagues, suddenly start walking everyone in sight?
El Paso pitchers walked 12 Tacoma Rainiers batters. Not to be out-done, Tacoma pitchers took the Chihuahuas on 13 walks.
That’s ten more walks than the two teams totaled in hits (15) – although that’s kind of understood, if you think about it. It’s hard to get hits when the pitchers aren’t throwing strikes.
Tacoma got the best of it, winning the game 11-7. Six of the 12 Tacoma batters who walked ended up scoring. The Rainiers had just six hits, but all of them went for extra-bases. Jake Scheiner hit a pair of two-run homers, Mason McCoy hit a bases loaded triple, and Zach DeLoach had a two-run double.
Two impactful outfielders joined the Rainiers lineup yesterday.
Taylor Trammell started a rehabilitation assignment, going 1-for-5 with a double. Trammell broke his hamate bone early in spring training, dashing his hope of competing with Jarred Kelenic for the Mariners starting left fielder job. He could be with the Rainiers for a while as he gets his timing back, and the M’s have to figure out what they are going to do with their roster.
Cade Marlowe was activated from the Tacoma injured list after being out for over a month with an oblique strain he suffered during spring training. We had Marlowe penciled in to the middle of the Rainiers lineup all winter, and yesterday it happened for the first time. He doubled, drew two walks, and scored three runs in his season debut.
YESTERDAY: Tacoma was limited to six hits yet scored 11 runs in an 11-7 win over El Paso that was a two-team walk-a-thon on Tuesday night. Tacoma drew 12 walks and had six extra-base hits – no singles – and won despite issuing 13 walks on their own. Jake Scheiner homered twice and drove in four runs, Mason McCoy hit a bases loaded triple and scored on the same play due to an error. Starter Easton McGee went five innings to earn the win, allowing two runs and walking just two batters.
TODAY: El Paso Chihuahuas (6-10) at Tacoma Rainiers (8-7), 6:05.
OPPONENT AFFILIATION: San Diego Padres.
OPPOSING MANAGER: Phillip Wellman.
SEASON SERIES: Tacoma leads, 1-0.
PITCHERS: LHP Jay Groome (1-1, 6.14) at RHP Konner Wade (0-0, 0.00)
Wade made 23 starts for Tacoma last year, going 5-7 with a 5.45 ERA. He was a free agent after the season, and was just now re-signed by the Mariners to join the Rainiers starting rotation.
ROSTER MOVES: We had nine roster moves prior to last night’s game. Tacoma activated outfielder Cade Marlowe and reliever Ryder Ryan from the injured list, both had been out since spring training. Outfielder Taylor Trammell started a rehabilitation assignment for Tacoma. The Mariners signed Konner Wade and he is starting for Tacoma today. Seattle called up reliever Tayler Saucedo, and optioned Darren McCaughan back to Tacoma. Reliever John Creel and infielder Cesar Izturis Jr. were sent back to extended spring training, while pitcher Matt Willrodt was transferred to Double-A Arkansas.
HOT HITTERS: Zach DeLoach has a five-game hitting streak, and he has hit safely in nine of his last ten games… Mason McCoy reached base safely in 14 of the 15 games he has played in… Cesar Hernandez has reached base safely in 11 of his 12 games… Jake Scheiner has homered in back-to-back games, with three homers total, and he has six RBI during a three-game hitting streak.
OPPONENT NEWS: Despite having Fernando Tatis Jr. in the lineup, the Chihuahuas just lost four of six home games to Albuquerque… infielder Taylor Kohlwey, who is a career .301 hitter in the PCL, is on a seven-game hitting streak… Rangel Ravelo has reached base safely in ten straight… the Chee-Wahs are loaded with ex-Rainiers. Ray Kerr, Domingo Tapia, Tim Lopes, Jantzen Witte, and Luis Liberato have all played for Tacoma, and their trainer Josh Diloreto was also once with Tacoma.
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 lost to the Brewers in 11 innings last night, and are now 0-4 in extra innings this year.
- The M’s Notebook has a blurb on Jose Caballero getting his first big league start.
- In the PCL, Coco Montes continued his hot hitting and Nolan Jones launched a grand slam as Albuquerque out-slugged first-place Oklahoma City, 13-10.
- Salt Lake’s Trey Cabbage hit the longest home run of the season so far, but the Bees lost to Seth Beer and Reno, 9-3. Cabbage or Beer, you tell me.