Three managers are back in town.
Al Pedrique will manage the International League team in the Triple-A All-Star Game on Wednesday in his return to Tacoma after spending the 1990 season playing for the then-Tacoma Tigers of the Oakland Athletics farm system.
Rick Rodriguez is in the other dugout as the pitching coach for the Pacific Coast League’s team, and he, too, played for the Tigers, from 1983-87.
And IL pitching coach Jeff Fassero is a former Seattle Mariners pitcher.
But Pedrique could hardly recognize this Cheney Stadium from the one he played in 27 years ago.
“The park is a lot different,” Pedrique said. “It’s a beautiful park, they have done a lot. You can tell the fans really enjoy the facilities. It is definitely one of the beautiful parks around the league.”
Fassero played three seasons with the Seattle Mariners.
He said fan support this week ahead of the game Wednesday in Tacoma has been incredible.
“It’s awesome for these kids that are playing Triple-A baseball now to be in this All-Star Game,” Fassero said. “ With all the fans out here learning who they are — they could be the next guys that are in the big leagues.”
Salt Lake pitcher Troy Scribner will appear in his first Triple-A All Star Game when he takes the mound Wednesday night.
But Scribner isn’t the only one in his family who knows how to throw a baseball.
Older brother Evan Scribner, is the Seattle Mariners’ injury-stricken relief pitcher. He appeared in eight games this year before being put on the 60-day disabled list with a flexor strain in his pitching elbow. Last year he appeared in 12 games with the M’s after coming in a trade from the A’s.
Troy Scribner said having an older brother in the big leagues is great for encouragement and advice.
“He always tells me to keep doing my thing,” Scribner said. “Try not to let anything else get to you and keep it simple — your turn will come.”
Second basemen Yoan Moncada and outfielder Dustin Fowler will not be playing in the all-star game this year.
Moncada is the No.1 prospect in baseball according to MLB.com and could see a call up to the White Sox soon.
Teammate Danny Hayes will replace him in the lineup and he is taking full advantage of the opportunity.
“It keeps you sharp that’s for sure,” Hayes said. “You don’t take those three days off — you take those three days off and it kind of makes a difference.”
Fowler who was playing good baseball for Scranton Wilkes-Barre of the New York Yankees organization, earned himself a call-up to the big leagues June 30 against the White Sox. In his first appearance in a Yankees jersey, the 22-year-old had to be carted off after sustaining a rupture of the patellar tendon in his right knee.
All-Star IL pitcher Caleb Smith, who is one of Fowler’s teammates in Scranton, said that the injury occurred at the worst time.
“It was just tragic that that happened to him,” Smith said. “I heard his surgery went well, but that’s just a bad deal. Me and a couple of the other guys FaceTimed him the day after he had surgery and he was doing well.
“He’s kind of bummed out, but who wouldn’t be.”
Are we going to see extra innings in Wednesday’s all-star game? Well if it does come down to that, expect to see only one extra inning played. If neither team scores a run in the 10th the game will be deemed a tie. The all-star game has only been into the 10th inning once in its history. In 2004, it ended in spectacular fashion with a walk-off home run.