The Tacoma Rainiers continue to rely on their offense.
It’s been a proven recipe for success of late with Luis Rodriguez and Carlos Peguero being the key ingredients in the formula.
Rodriguez extended his hitting streak with a three-hit game and Peguero drove in three runs, leading Tacoma to a 6-4 triumph over visiting Tucson in Pacific Coast League play Saturday at Cheney Stadium.
“We got some guys who have been swinging the bat very well for us,” Tacoma manager Daren Brown said. “It hasn’t just been one guy.”
Rodriguez, who went 3-for-4, extended his team-best hitting streak to 21 games with a single in the first and is batting .425 (34 for 80) with seven extra-base hits and 15 RBI over the stretch.
Tacoma’s record for consecutive games with a hit is 26, set by Rex Johnston in 1965 and matched by Chad Ackers in 1999. Mike Carp and Ryan Langerhans each hit safely in 22 consecutive games with the Rainiers last season.
First baseman Luis Jimenez, 2-for-4 with an RBI, has been equally strong at the plate for Tacoma, recording a hit in 23 of his last 24 games.
All of it has helped the Rainiers overcome a dreadful start to the season. Tacoma ended April tied with Nashville for the lowest batting average in the PCL (.235). May has seen a complete 180. The Rainiers lead the league with a .317 (281-for-886) team batting average this month.
Tacoma, which piled up 11 hits against the Padres, is averaging nearly 111/2 hits and 7 runs a contest while recording 10-plus hits in 17 of their 25 games in May.
The Rainiers, who have scored a combined 54 runs over the last seven games, improved to 22-27, while equaling their season high with four consecutive wins.
“We got off to a rough start,” Brown said. “We got healthy and the guys have done the work in the cage and got into a routine.”
With the win, Brown, who is in his 12th season in the Seattle organization and his sixth as the Rainiers’ manager, tied Dan Rohn on Tacoma’s all-time managerial wins list with 375 victories.
Brown has amassed an 886-792 mark during his 14-year career, including a 375-365 record with the Rainiers.
Tacoma starter Jeff Marquez got off to a solid start, registering a trio of strikeouts in the first inning.
Rodriguez scored on a Jimenez single in the bottom of the first. The Padres answered by scratching one of their own across in the second.
Tacoma opened the third with four consecutive singles – the final by Peguero, which drove in a pair of runs. Anthony Contreras smacked his third home run of the season to lead off the fourth and cut the deficit to 3-2. Cody Decker’s two-run shot in the fifth pulled Tuscon (17-32) to 6-4.
Tacoma faces the Padres at 1:35 p.m. today at Cheney Stadium. Forrest Snow (1-4, 7.46 ERA) will pitch for the Rainiers. Tucson will counter with Bear Bay (0-1, 5.91).