Two streaks ended Monday — the Tacoma Rainiers’ losing streak and J.P. Crawford’s hitting streak.
The Rainiers rallied for an 8-6 victory in Albuquerque, scoring five times in a wacky ninth inning to snap a four-game losing skid. Crawford, who had a hit in 15 consecutive games after beginning the season 0-for-4 on opening day, went 0-for-4 with a walk.
Rainiers’ reliever David McKay (2-0) earned the win and the save went to Parker Markel, who pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his first save. Of note was how the Rainiers used their pitching staff on this day, going with an opener (Matt Tenuta) for an inning and then pitching Justus Sheffield for three innings and 46 pitches.
The Seattle Mariners plan on using pitcher Yusei Kikuchi for an inning in an upcoming but as yet not planned start as a way to limit Kikuchi’s innings in his first season in Major League Baseball after coming over from Japan. This could set up Sheffield for a promotion to follow Kickuchi, who is scheduled to start Friday in Seattle against the Texas Rangers.
Trailing 6-3 entering the ninth, the Rainiers used three walks (one intentional), an error, a two-run double by Kristopher Negron, a run-scoring wild pitch and a run-scoring passed ball to take the lead.
Earlier in the game, Braden Bishop and Shed Long hit home runs for Tacoma.
After an offday on Tuesday, the Rainiers open a five-game homestand against the Sacramento Rivercats with a 6:05 p.m. game on Wednesday.