Huijer making name for himself

Northwest League All-Star notches league-best seventh win

Lars Huijer is the reigning Northwest League Pitcher of the Week. (Shari Sommerfeld/

By Robert Emrich / | July 30, 2013 9:22 PM ET

Lars Huijer capped a self-described dream week with the best outing of his career Tuesday.

The Mariners farmhand pitched six hitless innings and finished with eight one-hit frames as Class A Short-Season Everett blanked Hillsboro, 6-0.

Huijer improved to 7-1, fanning five and walking one for the AquaSox. He did not allow a base hit until Yogey Perez-Ramos singled to open the seventh inning. Huijer got the next batter, Cesar Carrasco, to hit into a 6-4-3 double play.

"I just try to keep the ball low, throw strikes with three pitches and they were fine tonight," said Huijer, who throws a fastball, a changeup and a curveball. "Eight innings pitched, one hit, it was great. I just try to keep the ball low in the strike zone. I guess they keep hitting into the ground. I'll take every ground ball I can get."

Huijer, who recorded 12 ground-ball outs, was named to the Northwest League All-Star team on July 25. On Monday, the Netherlands native was selected as the league's Pitcher of the Week. Overall, the hurler leads the circuit with seven wins while standing second with a 1.57 ERA and fourth with 43 strikeouts.

"This past week is kind of a dream, I just keep getting good news," said Huijer, who was signed by the Mariners as a non-drafted free agent on June 1, 2011. "All I can do is keep working hard and focusing on the big picture. I just keep doing what I'm doing. I feel great right now. I just gotta keep competing, I just keep doing my thing and go hard."

Huijer spent the 2012 season working exclusively out of the bullpen for Rookie-level Pulaski in the Appalachian League. Moving back to the rotation wasn't new for the 19-year-old right-hander, who started in the Arizona League in 2011.

"I've always been a starter and I kinda like starting," he said. "Last year was harder, I had to make an adjustment about that but being back in the rotation feels good and it's worked out so far.

"As a starter, you get a routine. You have three days of workouts and you know what day you're pitching so you can prepare yourself. As a reliever, you gotta be ready when you get that call. You're hot every night, you can pitch every night as a reliever."

Tyler Wright struck out two and gave up a hit in the ninth to finish things off for Everett.

Phillips Castillo slugged a three-run homer and Christian Carmichael plated a pair of runs for the AquaSox.

Robert Emrich is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @RobertEmrich. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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