DH extends hit streak to 10 games as AquaSox beat Ems
By John McDonald
EVERETT — If hitting is contagious, Greg Dobbs is spreading the disease among his Everett AquaSox teammates.
Dobbs extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a 3-for-3 performance in an 11-3 Everett victory over the Eugene Emeralds Wednesday at Everett Memorial Stadium.
Dobbs batted cleanup and was the third member of a trio that went 7-for-11. Each member of the threesome batted five times. Dobbs had two singles, a double, a walk and a sacrifice fly. He drove in two runs. No 2 hitter Miguel Villilo had two singles, two walks and scored two runs. Tim Merritt, the No. 3 hitter, had two singles, reached on an error, scored three runs and drove in two.
Oh yeah, the Nos. 5 and 6 hitters, Eduardo Figueroa and Emmanuel Santana, each hit two-run home runs.
"Greg’s killing the ball right now," Merritt said. "He’s hitting everything they’re throwing up there. And the team’s starting to get it up and stroking it with Dobbs.
"Dobbs has been carrying us. I just hope he keeps it going and the team starts to follow him."
Everett (23-25) won its second straight and fifth in five games against Eugene (19-29).
Ryan Ketchner (2-2), making his first start for Everett after 14 relief appearances, threw five innings and allowed just one unearned run.
The AquaSox broke open a tie game in the third. The first four Everett batters — Jason Rainey, Villilo, Merritt and Dobbs — all had base hits, producing one run and a bases-loaded situation. A second run scored when Figueroa grounded into a force out on Dobbs at second.
After Figueroa stole second, Eugene intentionally walked Santana, reloading the bases. Jason Van Meetren followed with a sacrifice fly to center.
Luis Oliveros then delivered an RBI single to right.
Everett’s assault on Eugene pitching continued in the fourth inning. Villilo drew a one-out walk, went to third on a single by Merritt and scored on a sacrifice fly by Dobbs. Figueroa then drove the ball out of the park for a two-run home run.
Eugene rallied for a run off AquaSox reliever Russ Morgan in the sixth. Jon Benick led off with a double, went to third on a single by Nick Trzesniak and scored on a groundout.
But the AquaSox loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom half of the inning. They scored once on a double play, then twice more on a home run by Santana.
Eugene tallied a run in the ninth on a walk and back-to-back singles by Santos Encarnacion and Jake Gautreau.
The first two batters combined to give Eugene a run in the first. Marcus Nettles was awarded first base on catcher’s interference. Nettles then stole second and scored on a single by Jason Bartlett.
Later in the same inning, Ketchner pitched out of a first-and-third, one-out jam with back-to-back strikeouts.
The AquaSox evened the score in the bottom half of the inning. Villilo drew a one-out walk, stole second as Merritt struck out, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on Dobbs’ infield single.
Ketchner pitched himself into and out of trouble in the second, too. He walked two batters and gave up a single to load the bases with one out, then got a double play grounder.