Opponent: Spokane Indians
When: 7:05 p.m.
Where: Everett Memorial Stadium
Radio: KRKO (1380 AM)
Pitchers: Everett right-hander Nick Allen (4-0, 3.19 ERA) vs. Spokane left-hander Jesse Hall (0-3, 9.22)
The boss takes a look
Midway through the Everett AquaSox’s 13-5 triumph over the Spokane Indians on Sunday, a tall man with shaved head and greying goatee ambled into Everett Memorial Stadium. Children in tow, he nonchalantly took a seat behind home plate and kicked back to watch the remainder of the game.
It was a subtle way for the Seattle Mariners’ top baseball executive to make an entrance.
Mariners general manager Bill Bavasi attended Sunday’s game, taking the opportunity to take a look at some of the kids on the farm.
Bavasi picked a good game to watch as the Everett bats exploded for 18 hits, including four home runs.
“It was very nice,” Bavasi said about the game. “This is my first look at most all of these players, so it was a fun day out.”
However, Bavasi was quick to point out that as well as the AquaSox played, it was far too early to make any kind of evaluation of the players.
“One thing we stay away from is judging players based on first impressions,” Bavasi said. “I’ll be coming back a few times later on. But as a group they sure seem to play the game right. They made hard contact, they ran the bases fast, they did a lot of nice things. And as usual, Pedro (Grifol, the AquaSox manager) has them well prepared.”
Wallbangers: Jeff Flaig and Daniel Santin had vastly different experiences with Everett Memorial Stadium’s notorious right-center wall Sunday.
Flaig hit what appeared to be a routine fly ball which drifted far enough to hit off the scoreboard for a double.
Later in the game Santin blasted a line drive to right-center that banged off the wall right back to the defense, which quickly returned the ball to second base and held Santin to a single.
Such is life at Everett Memorial Stadium, where the short porch and high wall in right center results in the Northwest League’s hardest-hit singles and cheapest doubles.
“This is the first time I’ve seen a wall like that,” Flaig said. “I heard about it before I came here and knew it was like that, but it’s still pretty shocking.”
The AquaSox have hit their share of balls off the right-center wall this season, with mixed results.
“You got that short porch out there and it’s a beast,” Santin said. “Sometimes you love it and sometimes you hate it because it takes away a lot of doubles.”
However, the AquaSox ultimately believe the short wall is a net positive for the hitters.
“It helps you,” Flaig said. “I hit a pop-up (Sunday) and hit the wall, which was kind of surprising. But it’s no biggie, you just hit like you would anywhere else.”
Leaders: Everett had several players among the statistical league leaders going into Monday’s game. Starting pitcher Nick Allen, tonight’s scheduled starter, was the only pitcher in the league with four wins. Everett also had three players in the top six in batting: Casey Craig was third (.349), Santin was fifth (.333) and Flaig was sixth (.325). Craig was also second in stolen bases with 12 and Luis Valbuena was third in RBI with 20.
Nick Patterson, Herald writer