This one is in the books, going down 9-3 in favor of Vancouver which improves to 5-2 overall now. I have to say it was a pretty sloppy game from both sides with five combined errors officially and probably another one or two that were scored as hits. I guess that is to be expected at a low A minor league game this early on in the season yet it is still disheartening to see.
Outside of starting pitcher Tony Butler — who was dynamite yet again for Everett — the performance of the rest of the team left a lot to be desired.
Last year’s second round pick Marcus Littlewood, now in Everett after being completely overmatched at Clinton in the Midwest League to begin the season, committed an error at short and was virtually non-existant at the plate in going 0-for-4.
Who did look good? Well, James Wood was 3-for-4 (all singles) with a run scored yet he’s 23 and a designated hitter. Other than that, I would say Burgess and Jabari Blash — although quiet tonight for the most part — show some promise with their athleticism and approach at the plate.
Well, that’s all for tonight as I got to head out on the long road home.
Update 9:49 p.m.: It’s now 8-3 Vancouver as both teams opened up off of the opponent’s bullpen. Everett got on the board in the sixth behind a two-run homer from second baseman Jorge Agudelo. Jarrett Burgess brought another run home with an RBI single later on in the inning.
Vancouver scored four runs against Weiss and then notched three more against Jason Buursma in the seventh.
Update 9:08 p.m.: Butler is now out of the game, behind 1-0. His line: 5 innings, three hits, two walks and one run (earned) to go with nine strikeouts. Pitch count unverified but definitely above 80.
Cody Weiss made his professional debut in relief of Butler and subsequently yielded a home run to the first batter he faced, Stephen McQuail. It didn’t get any better after that as he got lit up for two doubles, a walk, sacrifice fly. Even a batter he struck out reached base on a wild pitch. Vancouver plated four runs in the sixth to make it 5-0.
An inauspicious debut to say the least.
Update 8:34 p.m.: Butler seemed to tire slightly in the fifth but wound up striking out the side regardless in addition to walking one and allowing a single. Let’s see if the AquaSox can get their bats going in the bottom half as they still trail Vancouver 1-0.
Update 8:13 p.m.: A Littlewood error gave the Canadians another baserunner but Butler stranded him this time by generating another caught-looking strikeout, his fourth such in the game.
Still 1-0 Vancouver heading into the bottom of the fourth.
Update 7:57 p.m.: After striking out the first batter of the inning, Butler yielded back-to-back hits and was touched up for his first run of the season as Jonathan James crushed a double to the gap to score teammate Shane Opitz.
Meanwhile, Everett left the bases loaded in the second as they were unable to get Butler any run support. So it is 1-0 Vancouver headed to the bottom of the third.
Update 7:34 p.m:. Tony Butler just breezed through the second inning with two more strikeouts sandwiched around a groundout. Butler now has four K’s through two innings of work against the Canadians.
Live here at Everett Memorial Stadium as the Everett AquaSox take on the Vancouver Canadians in Northwest League action. It is the second home game of the season for the AquaSox and an intriguing one in that an old face takes the mound once again for Everett.
Tony Butler, 23, is now in his second stint as an AquaSox. He played for the team back in 2006 before being promoted up to high-A and then eventually dealt as part of the five player package that eventually was sent to Baltimore in exchange for P Erik Bedard back in February of 2008.
Now, after kicking around in the Orioles and most recently, the Brewers organization, Butler is back in the Mariners organization after being signed in May.
And Butler is off to a good start tonight with an easy first inning against the Canadians. Two strikeouts, a walk and no hits or runs allowed. Butler now has pitched a 5.0 innings, yielding just a hit and two walks in the 2011 season.