Bats stay red hot for Tacoma
The Tacoma Rainiers’ bats have been hot of late. The team entered play Friday night hitting .314 in May.
The trend continued against Tucson at Cheney Stadium, as the Rainiers banged out 14 hits en route to a 13-6 win.
Playing in his first Triple-A game since July 28, 2011, when he was with Toledo in the Detroit Tigers organization, the recently optioned Casper Wells led the way, going 3-for-4 and driving in three runs with a pair of doubles and a two-run home run. Luis Rodriguez, Carlos Triunfel and Mike Wilson added two hits each and Vinny Catricala drove in three runs.
It didn’t matter that a sudden downpour delayed the start of the game by 46 minutes — the Rainiers came out swinging.
Tacoma (21-27) loaded the bases in the bottom of the first against San Diego starter Tom Layne. Triunfel lined a one-out single to center to drive in two runs, and Wells — playing in his first game in a Rainiers uniform — roped a double to left to drive in another run.
Tacoma added two more in the inning to take an early 5-0 lead.
Slugger Carlos Peguero added to the lead in the second with a towering, two-run home run to right-center, his fifth in the last five games. After Triunfel singled to center, Wells lined a home run to left.
The Rainiers pushed the lead to 11-2 in the fourth on Catricala’s two-out, two-run double. Wilson brought home two more runs after lining a single off third baseman Logan Forsythe’s glove.
Tucson (17-31) managed to cut the deficit to 13-6 in the fifth, knocking Tacoma starter Anthony Vasquez from the game. Vasquez went four innings, allowing six earned runs on 10 hits.
But relievers Sean Henn, Scott Patterson and Chance Ruffin quieted the Padres’ bats over the final four innings. Patterson earned the win.
The Rainiers have now recorded 10 or more hits in 16 of their first 23 games played in May. Tacoma also notched its first win of the season in the first game of a homestand.
Tacoma manager Daren Brown is now one win shy of tying Dan Rohn (375) as the winningest manager in franchise history.
The Rainiers continue the four-game series with the Padres tonight at 7:05 p.m. Right -hander Jeff Marquez (3-4, 6.45 ERA) takes the mound for Tacoma, while Tucson counters with Colt Hynes (1-4, 4.79).