AquaSox starting pitcher Isaiah Campbell delivers the first pitch of the season during a game against Eugene on Friday at Funko Field in Everett. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

AquaSox starting pitcher Isaiah Campbell delivers the first pitch of the season during a game against Eugene on Friday at Funko Field in Everett. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Packard’s grand slam lifts AquaSox past Emeralds in opener

Everett struggles early but gets a big hit when in it counts to pull away.

EVERETT — Spencer Packard made sure the Everett AquaSox started their 2022 season in style.

Packard spoiled a Eugene Emeralds shutout bid by smacking a grand slam home run in the bottom of the eighth inning, and the Sox opened their Northwest League campaign with a 4-2 victory Friday night at a frigid Funko Field.

Everett generated almost no offense through seven innings, managing just one base hit that left the infield as the Sox trailed 1-0 heading into the bottom of the eighth. But wildness by Eugene reliever Cole Waites aided the Sox’s cause as a pair of walks loaded the bases. Then with two out, Packard fought off three two-strike pitches before lofting a high fly ball toward the short porch in right-center. The ball just cleared the fence to give Everett a three-run advantage.

Leon Hunter earned the win with one scoreless inning of relief. Evan Johnson picked up the save by allowing one run in the ninth.

Everett starting pitcher Isaiah Campbell worked constantly with runners on base, but managed to escape having allowed just one run in five innings. The right-hander, behind a fastball sitting at 91 mph, gave up four hits and four walks, striking out four.

Jairo Pomares and Marco Luciano each hit solo homers to lead Eugene.

Eugene starter Kyle Harrison was nearly unhittable during an abbreviated start. The left-hander allowed just two singles in four innings, striking out seven as he showed off a fastball that sat at 93 mph and a slider with bite.

The game was the first played by Everett using a pitch clock and finished in a time of 2 hours, 26 minutes. Most of the Sox’s games last season lasted longer than three hours.

Short hops

Everett is beginning the season with a five-man starting rotation. After Campbell it will be left-hander Adam Macko on Saturday and right-hander Bryce Miller on Sunday. Then when the Sox’s series at Hillsboro begins Tuesday it will be right-hander Jimmy Joyce followed by right-hander Tim Elliott. … Everett longtime radio broadcaster Pat Dillon, who’s been behind the microphone since 1998, will reach a milestone later this month when he calls his 2,000th game on April 26 at home against Spokane. That total includes 1,997 with the Sox, plus three Triple-A games when he served as a fill-in (Portland in 2005, Tacoma in 2016 and 2019). … Everett is facing a stacked Eugene roster that includes six of the San Francisco Giants’ top-10 prospects as determined by, including shortstop Luciano, who is considered San Francisco’s No. 1 prospect and ranked No. 13 in all of baseball.

Click here for box score

Talk to us

More in Sports

Everett's Ben Hemmerling controls the puck with Portland's O'Brien Jack trailing in the second period Friday night at the Angel of the Winds Arena in Everett on October 8, 2021. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
No sure bet, but several Tips could be taken in NHL draft

Forward Ben Hemmerling is among the Everett players that will be keeping close watch beginning Thursday.

The AquaSox’s Noelvi Marte looks up to the sky while rounding the bases after a long homer to center field during a game against the Vancouver Canadians Wednesday, July 6, 2022, at Funko Field in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
GALLERY: AquaSox rally in 8th to defeat Canadians

Everett scores twice late and comes from behind to beat Vancouver 6-5.

The AquaSox' Noelvi Marte hits a double against the Spokane Indians at Funko Field on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 in Everett, Washington. The Mariners promoted Marte from Low-A Modesto to High-A Everett on Monday. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Top-prospect Marte heating up in 2nd half for AquaSox

After some early struggles, the young shortstop batted .350 with three homers and 13 RBI in the past 11 games for Everett.

Washington's Steve Emtman leaves the field displaying the numberone sign after Washington's 34-14 win over Michigan in the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., Jan. 1, 1992. Emtman and Washington's quarterback Billy Joe Hobert were named co-MVPs of the game. (AP Photo/Bob Galbraith)
The Pac-12 will never be the same — and that’s sad for many

The dismantling of the conference hurts for those that have been fans for a long, long time.

Seattle Seahawks owner Jody Allen stands on a balcony at CenturyLink Field after she raised the 12th man flag before the team's NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Stephen Brashear)
Jody Allen: Seahawks, Blazers not for sale at this time

The statement came amid growing speculation about the future ownership of the teams.

FILE - Germany's assistant coach Jessica Campbell stands behind players on the German bench during the group A Hockey World Championship match between France and Germany in Helsinki, Finland, Monday May 16, 2022. The Coachella Valley Firebirds have hired Jessica Campbell as the American Hockey League’s first female assistant coach. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, File)
Kraken AHL team hires 1st female assistant in league history

Jessica Campbell will be behind the bench for the Coachella Valley Firebirds next season.

U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen of Everett poses with a soccer ball in front of the U.S. capitol building in Washington, D.C.. (Provided photo)
How Rep. Rick Larsen helped Seattle secure its 2026 World Cup bid

The longtime congressman isn’t solely responsible, but he played a small role in bringing the event to the Pacific Northwest.

Dream pull away in 3rd to beat Storm

Seattle never leads in a 90-76 loss to Atlanta.

Seattle Mariners infielders react after the Mariners defeated the San Diego Padres 6-2 in a baseball game Tuesday, July 5, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Mariners sweep Padres, move within 1 game of .500

Seattle beats San Diego 6-2 for its 12th win in its past 15 games.

Most Read