When Wednesday’s game was suspended in the fifth inning of a 2-2 tie, Tacoma pitchers had allowed just seven runs in 22 innings to the Bees, and the Rainiers had won five of their past six Pacific Coast League games.
A day later, the Rainiers probably wish the game was still suspended.
Salt Lake scored nine consecutive runs before winning the suspended game, 11-4, and then took the regularly scheduled game by a lopsided 10-3 margin.
All told, the two teams played 11 innings on Thursday, with Salt Lake outscoring Tacoma 19-5.
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The pair of blowout losses spoiled Tacoma’s hope of winning a series on the road for the first time this season. Instead, the Rainiers settled for a split of the four-game set.
“It was a 2-2 game and we had won the first two games of the series,” Tacoma manager Pat Listach said. “We were in position to take the first three.”
After a weeklong string of solid pitching performances, the Rainiers were unable to stop the Salt Lake attack Thursday.
The suspended game went south immediately. Salt Lake opened Thursday resumption of the suspended game by greeting Tacoma reliever Cam Hobson with a five run inning to take a 7-2 lead. Jett Bandy’s three-run homer to left was the decisive blow.
“Cameron Hobson came in and had two outs,” Listach said. “They scored all five with two outs. After that, they kept swinging the bats.”
The Bees went on to score nine straight runs, taking an 11-2 lead before Tacoma scored twice in the top of the ninth.
The second game was more of the same: a two-run homer in the first by Salt Lake cleanup hitter Marc Krauss set the tone, and a seven-run third inning turned it into a blowout.
Rainiers starter Sam Gaviglio (2-3) had control problems in the third inning, walking three consecutive batters, including one with the bases loaded that forced in Salt Lake’s fourth run.
Logan Bawcom relieved Gaviglio and gave up a bases-loaded triple to Alfredo Marte, making it 7-0.
“In the second game we walked too many guys,” said Listach. “We walked seven guys. You don’t expect to win when you walk seven guys.”
Streaking Rainiers hitters Ketel Marte and James Jones continued to hit. Marte went 5 for 8 between the two games, extending his hitting streak to 13 straight games. Jones had hits in both contests and has a 12-game streak. … Yoervis Medina made his first appearance since being sent down by the Mariners, retiring all six batters he faced in the nightcap.
The trip continues for Tacoma with a four-game series at Fresno, starting Friday at 7:05 p.m. Tacoma starts Forrest Snow (1-1, 3.44 ERA) against the Grizzlies’ Brady Rodgers (1-2, 8.02). The game will be broadcast on 850-AM.