Monterey Amberjacks

The long awaited home opener has arrived for the area's newest professional franchise.
 And perhaps coming home will change the fortunes of the Monterey Amberjacks, who open a two-game homestand Saturday against Hollywood at 6:30 p.m. at Sollicito Park.
 An independent professional baseball team, not affiliated with any major league or minor league organization, Monterey is off to a 1-7 start this summer.
 The Amberjacks are part of the Pecos League, consisting mostly of players under 25 with college experience.
 In the Amberjacks case, it has one player with previous minor league experience in former Boston Red Sox pitching prospect Pete Ruiz.
 Ruiz is also the head coach at Palma High, having guided them to the semifinals this past spring of the Central Coast Section Open Division playoffs.
 Because of the Chieftains extended season, Ruiz, who was drafted by the Red Sox in the 10th round in 2008 out of Santa Barbara City College, has yet to see action on the mound.
 Pitching has been sporadic for the Amberjacks, who have given up 13 or more runs three times this year, having been outscored 65-22 in their first eight games.
 Brian Luebcke is off to a hot start at the plate for the Amberbacks, hitting .375 while Mark Demko is hitting .316 and Jordan Garrett .308 with a homer.
 Monterey will play two games at Sollecito Park before moving to a neutral site Monday, facing Hollywood in Hollister.

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