Rainiers' losing ways continue
All streaks come to an end eventually. One ended for the Tacoma Rainiers on Saturday night, and another continues into today’s eight-game homestand finale.
Tacoma extended its losing skid to six games following a 3-2 loss to Salt Lake in front of 5,630 fans at Cheney Stadium, despite ending its scoreless streak dating back to Tuesday’s 8-1 loss to Sacramento.
The Rainiers’ drought had reached 192/3 innings heading into Saturday, including back-to-back 3-0 and 2-0 shutouts to the Bees. That streak quickly ended with two outs in the bottom of the first when Luis Jimenez’s RBI double to left-center scored Franklin Gutierrez.
After Salt Lake went ahead 2-1 in the second, the Rainiers scratched out one more run before Bees starter Matt Shoemaker and the bullpen put the clamps on.
Shoemaker surrendered just two hits after the second inning before exiting in the seventh after 103 pitches, having given up one earned run.
The Rainiers (24-38) were retired in order in the fourth, sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth innings, and were held to just one hit over the final four. Gutierrez’s singled down the left-field line in the fifth but was thrown out trying to stretch the hit into a double.
In seven games of the homestand, the Rainiers have been outscored, 35-15, including 8-2 in three games against Salt Lake with two shutouts.
“(Salt Lake’s pitchers) have thrown strikes, for the most part, and they’ve used both sides of the plate,” Tacoma manager Daren Brown said. “We haven’t made any adjustments on our side.”
In their previous six games, the Rainiers batted .143 with 52 strikeouts. The six hits Saturday were the most in four games.
“We’re not swinging the bats well,” Brown said. “We need to get some guys going offensively.”
In the second, Salt Lake’s Robinzon Diaz gave the Bees (33-30) a 2-1 lead with a two-run home run to left, but Trayvon Robinson’s RBI single in the bottom half of the inning tied the game at 2.
Tacoma starter Andrew Carraway gave up three earned runs in 52/3 innings, the second consecutive outing he surrendered three or fewer earned runs. The go-ahead run by Salt Lake came in the sixth when Carraway loaded the bases and Adam Heether’s sacrifice fly scored Matt Long for a 3-2 lead.
Salt Lake’s Doug Deeds went 3-for-5 Saturday, and needs two more hits to reach 1,000 for his minor-league career.
He’s also six home runs away from 100.
The Rainiers and Bees conclude their four-game series at Cheney Stadium at 1:35 p.m. today. Tacoma sends right-hander Jeff Marquez (4-6, 6.82 ERA) to the mound against Salt Lake right-hander Eddie McKiernan (1-1, 8.00).