Oklahoma City, OK (3/31/23) – Aided by nine Oklahoma City walks, the Tacoma Rainiers pounded out 15 hits for a resounding 14-8 victory in their season-opener on Friday night at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.
Jose Caballero (2B) put Tacoma ahead 3-0 in the second inning on his first Triple-A hit; he gapped a two-out bases loaded double to left. Jake Scheiner (first Triple-A hit), Colin Moran (single) and Zach DeLoach (walk) each scored.
Moran (3B) doubled the lead in the third, yanking a three-run homer to right field with two out. (Brian O’Keefe single, Scheiner walk.)
Rainiers right-hander Darren McCaughan cruised through the first three innings, facing two over the minimum. In the fourth OKC halved the Tacoma lead to 6-3 when catcher Hunter Feduccia lifted his first longball of the year to right with two on base. Michael Busch (2B) added a RBI single in the fifth. McCaughan pitched 5.0 complete, allowing three earned runs on five hits and two walks. He struck out four.
It was 7-4 in the seventh after Scheiner blasted his first Triple-A home run, a towering solo shot down the left field line. In a huge eight-run, 14-batter Tacoma frame, nine batters went to the plate before an out and there were five hits, four walks and a hit batter, including two-RBI knocks by SS Mason McCoy (single) and DH Mike Ford (double). Ford narrowly missed a grand slam off the centerfield wall.
Scheiner’s homer was the furthest hit ball of the night, 406 feet. Moran’s bomb also traveled 400.
A three-run homer to left by OKC shortstop Luke Williams and a Bradley Zimmer RBI single in the eighth concluded the evening’s scoring, long after the game had become purely academic.
Caballero, Scheiner and DeLoach each hit safely during their Triple-A debut. Caballero reached base four times, Scheiner and DeLoach (RBI double in 7th) reached three times apiece.
The middle game of this three-game set will be on Saturday evening, another 5:05 PT/7:05 CT in Oklahoma City. RHP Easton McGee (Seattle 40-man roster) and OKC RHP Matt Andriese comprise the starting pitching matchup.
Rainiers broadcaster Mike Curto will have full coverage on TacomaRainiers.com. All 2023 Rainiers games, home and away, can also be heard for free on the MiLB First Pitch app. HD video broadcasts of every home game can be viewed with an MiLB.TV subscription.