2023 Reno Aces season in review

Published: Sep. 25, 2023 at 9:28 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - The 2023 season for the Reno Aces was a complete effort.

“First half you have the best offensive team in AAA in a ton of categories,” said the Voice of the Aces, Kevin DiDomenico.

Phillip Evans got the club off to a hot start hitting a franchise record .455 in the month of April.

Big names like Tommy Henry and Brandon Pfaadt led the charge in the rotation.

The Aces finished with the best record in the Pacific Coast League West Division during that first half.

“And then the depth in the outfield and as an organization definitely aiding that where guys delivered where they were supposed to,” added DiDomenico.

Former major leaguers who signed minor league deals with Arizona made a difference. Kyle Lewis and Diego Castillo finished top-4 on the club in RBI.

“And then you start the second half and get off to a slow start like we did in the first half. You rely a ton on your bullpen. It was an uncertain pitching staff for a while. In a ton of ways guys coming up from AA, coming down from the big leagues, (they) have stepped up in such a big way,” said DiDomenico.

Names like Bryce Jarvis and Andrew Saalfrank started in Amarillo, moved through Reno, and ended up with the D-backs. They were two of the most consistent arms in the second half.

Manager Blake Lalli racked up his 300th career win.

Then there was the call up of top prospect Jordan Lawlar, even if his AAA stint only lasted 16 games.

“Offensively his at-bats were different,” DiDomenico remembered. “He was so disciplined for a 21-year-old. That’s a junior in college.”

If you thought last year’s PCL championship season was good, this year’s team actually had three more regular season wins.

Despite topping their division in both halves, the Aces missed the playoffs by one game.

Oklahoma City was the first half winner, and Round Rock claimed the second half by one game over Reno.

Aces fans will have to wait until 2024 for another run at a league championship.