EVERETT — If you’re having a tough time keeping up with all the player turnover this season at Everett Memorial Stadium, you’re probably not alone.
Everett’s recent eight-game road trip brought with it a flurry of roster moves as numerous players were promoted, sent elsewhere for rehabilitation stints or even traded away.
“In some ways it is (unique), but this is what happens when guys go down and each year is a little different,” said AquaSox bench coach Andy Bottin. “But thank goodness we have people that are actually mature enough and can handle the higher levels. Our biggest thing is that when they go there they can make routine plays, throw strikes and do the things to help the affiliate they go to.”
The most notable absences are first-round draft pick Evan White and outfielder Brayan Hernandez. White re-aggravated a quadriceps injury he suffered early in the season and has been sent to Arizona for rehabilitation with no timetable to return.
Hernandez was shipped to the Miami Marlins along with former AquaSox pitchers Brandon Miller and Lukas Schiraldi as part of the deal that netted the Mariners reliever David Phelps on Thursday.
A native of Venezuela, Hernandez was a highly regarded international prospect when he signed with the Mariners as a 16-year-old in 2014.
“He was surprised,” said Everett manager Jose Moreno, a fellow Venezuelan who broke the news to Hernandez while the AquaSox were in Eugene. “You expect to get to the big leagues with the team that gives you the opportunity to sign as a professional baseball player. But this is a business that you have no control over. He’s happy for the new chapter that he’s going to have with the Marlins.”
Those aren’t the only players who have moved on. Starting pitcher Ryne Inman and relievers Wyatt Mills and JP Sears were each promoted to Class A full-season Clinton during the road trip.
To fill out the roster the AquaSox have added a number of pitchers and position players since their previous homestand. Right-handed pitchers David Gerber, Anjul Hernandez and Michael Rivera are with the team, in addition to outfielders Jansiel Rivera and Ronald Rosario.
Hernandez and Rosario began the season with the AquaSox before being reassigned to the Arizona Mariners when the 2017 draft class arrived in Everett a week into the season.
Moreno said he feels comfortable plugging any of the newcomers into any situation.
“They have been working together for the last two or three years,” Moreno said. “They were in extended spring training so basically they know all the philosophies we believe in as an organization.”
Bottin, a graduate of Meadowdale High School who now lives on Camano Island, is also familiar with the new crop.
“A lot of these guys I had them last year (in Arizona) and they’ve earned that right,” said Bottin, who is now in his 23rd season with the Mariners organization. “Even some of them last year we were hoping to maybe get them up here and let them see the pitching.”
Hernandez went 3-2 with a 1.59 ERA in five appearances including three starts with Arizona. He got the start on Friday.
The AquaSox appear to be on the verge of getting Greifer Andrade back. Andrade underwent an appendectomy two weeks ago and took two rounds of batting practice on Friday prior to Everett’s game against the Boise Hawks.
“He’s close,” Moreno said on Thursday. “He’s taking light live batting practice off the tee and short toss. Maybe next week he’ll be ready to go.”
Andrade will be a welcome bat back in the lineup. The Venezuelan was slashing .338/.350/.500 with two homers and 14 RBI in 20 games prior to being placed on the seven-day disabled list.
Former Seattle Mariners All-Star Bret Boone threw out the ceremonial first pitch Friday. Boone was at Everett Memorial Stadium to sign copies of his book, Home Game: Big-League Stories from My Life in Baseball’s First Family.
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