EVERETT — Everett AquaSox manager Jose Moreno was not in the dugout with his team during Thursday’s and Friday’s games.
Moreno was serving a two-game suspension handed down by the Northwest League after he was ejected by home plate umpire Emma Charlesworth-Seiler during Everett’s 9-0 loss to Vancouver at Everett Memorial Stadium on July 5.
“I have no idea,” Moreno said. “I have my story about what happened. I was talking about strikes and balls, and I know that we’re not allowed to argue about that. But that was the league decision… (Friday) is going to be my last day so I will be back (Saturday) on the field.”
According to AquaSox general manager Danny Tetzlaff, managers are routinely fined, but rarely suspended following an ejection. Tetzlaff had no additional information about the suspension.
No one answered the phone at the Northwest League headquarters on Friday afternoon and league president Mike Ellis did not respond to an email seeking comment.
Hitting coach Eric Farris ran the ball club during Moreno’s absence, and the AquaSox staff would like to continue to see more improvement at the plate.
“Right now we have to be more aggressive,” Moreno said. “We are taking too many fastballs right down the middle for some reason. I know we try to control the zone but at some point we have to be able to hit the fastball. That’s an adjustment that we have to make.”
Stowers heating up?
Everett center fielder Josh Stowers went 3-for-4 with his second professional home run in Wednesday’s series-opener and followed up with a 1-for-3 performance Thursday. During Friday’s game he found himself hitting third as the designated hitter.
Stowers, who was the Seattle Mariners’ second-round selection in last month’s draft, is now slashing .255/.364/.455 with two homers and 10 RBI. He has also stolen five bases on seven attempts in 16 games.
“Sometimes it’s just a matter of time to make the adjustment,” Moreno said. “At the beginning I know they try to prove (something) and show everybody ‘this is what I can do…’ They try to learn and make the adjustments and at the end you’re going to get the results.”
Bart putting on a show
If you get to Everett Memorial Stadium early, you can watch Salem-Keizer catcher Joey Bart put on a show in batting practice.
Bart was the second overall pick in last month’s draft out of Georgia Tech, and the 6-foot-3, 200-pound slugger routinely drives the ball out of the park to all fields. His production has carried over into games and he entered Friday’s game having homered in four straight games.
“As crazy as it sounds I’m feeling all right (but) I’ve definitely got a ways to go,” Bart said. “It always takes me awhile to jump between that metal and wood bat, so I’m still trying to find that bat that feels good in my hand. I can’t complain about how it’s started, but I’m looking to keep rolling and get a little hotter.”
In seven games since he was called up from Arizona, Bart is slashing .290/.313/.903 with six home runs and 14 RBI. He has struck out seven times in 31 at-bats.
Bart was a teammate of current AquaSox infielder Ryne Ogren last summer with the Harwich Mariners in the Cape Cod League.
“It’s kind of like a brotherhood,” Bart said. “You play against guys growing up through travel ball and college, college summer leagues, and it’s cool to see them here and hopefully see them progress through the minor leagues and to the big leagues.”
Ogren on the mend
Speaking of Ogren, the shortstop was drilled by a pitch near his right shoulder Wednesday and left the game.
Moreno said Ogren still had some tightness, but Ogren appears likely to return before the eight-game homestand concludes.
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