With Eugene, a "short-season" club that begins playing after the June draft, Colt Morton was leading the Northwest League in home runs with 17 in 66 games while batting .238. He also had 45 RBI.
On August 13, a day Morton threw out one of seven basestealers, Morton was batting .290 before he fell into a hellacious 4-for-47 slump. His August average was just .167 after a .308 July.
"(A short stroke) is the key to my success, staying short and compact with my swing because if I get my barrel of my bat to the baseball that is when I am going to do my damage," Morton reminds himself. "If I get too long I am going to have some problems. I have long arms and in college I could get away with a little bit of a longer swing because of the aluminum bats."
He began the season with Single-A Fort Wayne and hit .150 with 4 HR and 11 RBI in 36 games.
Morton was the Padres third round draft pick in 2003 out of North Carolina State University.
Morton is also hoping to get some of that Southern twang back in his life:
"The sweet tea in North Carolina was unbelievable," Morton recalls of his days at North Carolina State. "And you can’t get it anywhere else. You can order sweet tea and put 18 packets of sugar in there but it is not going to work. The sweet tea – you miss that."
Morton is expected to back-up BayBears starting catcher Nick Trzesniak.
Catcher Steve Morales has returned home to Puerto Rico due to family medical concerns.