By Nick Patterson Herald writer
EVERETT — The Everett AquaSox have played more than their share of quality baseball this season.
However, it’s important to remember the Sox are still a short-season single-A baseball club, and Monday night they played one of those games the low minors are so often notorious for.
Everett had what one would generously describe as a learning experience as the Sox fell to the Boise Hawks 11-7 at Everett Memorial Stadium.
Playing the opener of their five-game series, the Sox had a nightmare. Everett’s fielders committed four errors, the pitchers gave up three gopher balls, and the Sox made some glaring errors on the bases.
“There was a lot of crazy stuff going on,” Everett manager Rob Mummau said. “It was one of those minor-league baseball games, you know. It was kind of uncharacteristic of our club. We made some baserunning mistakes and some mistakes in the field, which cost us some runs.”
The Hawks also got into the spirit themselves, committing four errors of their own and issuing six free passes. But on a night where both teams were in a deadly slugging mood — they combined for 25 hits, 11 of which went for extra bases, including six homers — it was Boise’s offense that had that extra jump.
“The ball seemed to carry a little more than usual, and some balls went over that short porch in right-center field,” Mummau said. “It was just one of those games.”
Gioskar Amaya went 3-for-5 with a homer to pace the Hawks (9-4 second half, 22-29 overall), who won their third straight. Rock Shoulders also went 3-for-5 for Boise, while Stephen Bruno and Carlos Escobar also homered.
Alfredo Morales, Marcus Littlewood and Janelfry Zorrilla all homered for Everett (5-7, 33-18).
Everett starting pitcher Scott DeCecco had an outing that was equal parts quality and frustrating. The left-hander walked none and struck out seven in his 52/3 innings. However, he also allowed nine hits and six runs as he suffered the loss.
Felix Pena picked up the win for Boise, despite giving up four runs in four innings of relief. Nathan Dorris struck out three in 11/3 scoreless innings to pick up the save.
Monday’s game fell into a regular pattern as Boise would score, only for Everett to respond immediately to close the gap. However, after Boise took a 5-3 lead in the top of the fifth inning on Bruno’s two-run homer, the Sox were never able to get back even, despite twice pulling within one and closing within two on another occasion.
Everett pulled within one in the bottom of the fifth, Taylor Ard lashing a two-out double to left, then scoring on Patrick Kivlehan’s single after left fielder Xavier Batista bobbled the ball.
But another two-run bomb by Boise in the sixth increased Everett’s deficit to three, this time Escobar ripping a two-out shot to make it 7-4.
Once again the Sox closed in the bottom half of the inning. Zorrilla led off with a solo homer to center, then Mike Faulkner scored when Boise third baseman Jeimer Candelario booted Mike Zunino’s grounder to make it 7-6.
Boise again created space in the seventh on Amaya’s solo homer. Everett had a chance to close again in the bottom of the seventh, but with one on and one out Zorrilla was thrown out at second trying to stretch a single to right-center into a double, taking the air out of a potential rally, and Boise padded its lead after that.