Rainiers PCL Playoffs Game 5
Feierabend v Mortensen, 7:00pm
The Rainiers won the first two games on the road, then saw the RiverCats pull the same trick in Safeco. Tonight’s the deciding game – the winner heads to Memphis for the PCL championship.
The series has been defined by command, or the lack thereof. Game 1 saw the Rainiers spot Sacramento to a 7-1 lead, but RiverCats starter Clayton Mortensen’s wildness gave the Rainiers an opening, and got to Travis Blackley to get the come-from-behind win. The Rainiers led most of game 2, thanks to another 5 walks in 5 2/3 from Sacramento starter Travis Banwart.
In Safeco, Rainiers starters Mauricio Robles and Yusmeiro Petit had decent off-speed stuff but little command of their fastballs, and while neither was hit terribly hard, the walks ran up pitch counts and meant the Rainiers were consistently playing from behind (Sacramento has scored at least one run in the first inning of 3 of the 4 games so far).
Tonight Sacramento starts Mortensen, their ace, on 3 days rest. The Rainiers will counter with Ryan Feierabend, who’s making his first appearance of the series. Game 1 starter Andy Baldwin’s available in the bullpen as well.
The Mariners start someone not named Felix Hernandez, so why not tune in to Mike Curto on 850AM or here? Better yet, come down to Safeco. The logistical issues of getting to Safeco while thousands of Seahawks fans leave proved much less severe than I’d thought. So come down; you may have an entire section to yourself, but if you’ve ever wanted to feel like some insane tycoon who orders professional sporting events played for his/her personal benefit, tonight’s the night.
RAINIERS WIN! The Rainiers take the series 3-2, with a 4-1 win in game 5. After trailing for the middle innings, the M’s tied it in the 6th, then took the lead on a truly bizarre play: 1 out, runner on first. Jose Yepez hits a grounder to short who goes to 2nd to try and get Mike Wilson, but Wilson beats the relay. The 2B fires to first in time to get Yepez, and 1B Tommy Everidge, thinking there were 3 outs, throws the ball into the crowd. That’s a 2-base error, and that allows Wilson to score, about 5 minutes after the play ended.
A Matt Mangini two-run HR gave them some breathing room, and Josh Lueke closed it out in the 9th. Ryan Feierabend’s the player of the game, after an 8IP, 1R, 2H, 0BB performance.
As usual, pictures below.
In other MiLB playoff news, the Everett Aquasox won the NWL championship tonight (and intrastate bragging rights) over Spokane. West Tennessee lost their SL series to plain old Tennessee. The Clinton Lumberkings beat Kane County (another Oakland affiliate) this afternoon in their MWL semifinal series.
Ryan Feierabend throwing the first pitch: