Robert Brender, @robertbrender on TwitterLas Vegas 51s 14, @ Salt Lake Bees (LAA) 8
The 51s brought the lumber to Salt Lake City Monday, producing 14 runs on 16 hits in a 14-8 win over the Bees.
CF Matt den Dekker (pictured) had a rare multi-hit game on the road, going 3-4 with a pair solo homeruns (6), three runs scored and a walk. He had gone eight straight games without collecting more than one hit and was batting .258 away from Cashman Field coming in. Both of the homers Monday came off right-handed pitchers, whom he’s batting .308 against with all six of his long balls. Conversely, he’s hitting just .183 against lefties with two of his 19 extra base hits.
SS Ruben Tejada picked up a three hits, including his 11th double, and drove in three runs. The native of Panama has hit safely in three straight games and eight of nine to increase his batting average to .268. Another good sign lately has been his eye at the plate, having struck out only twice in the last 10 games (43 at-bats). To be fair, he hasn’t been walking much either (two in the last 10 games).
3B Zach Lutz also had a huge night at the dish, launching his 13th homer in the 1st inning and plating four runs. He’s been on base 12 times in the last four games (7H/5BB) with eight RBI. The four RBI Monday are the most since he drove in five April 11 at Fresno.
Lefty reliever Tim Byrdak has been outstanding since being promoted to Vegas as he continues working his way back from surgery. With two more scoreless frames Monday, the 39-year-old has five consecutive appearances (3.2 IP) without allowing a run in AAA. This was the first time he’s thrown more than 1 1/3 innings in a game this season, including 14 appearances in the Florida State League and one in the GCL. He was awarded the win (1-0) after replacing starter Matt Fox, who gave up eight runs in four innings. Good chance we will see Byrdak back in New York when the calendar month turns to September.
Notes: Lucas Duda played first base and was 1-5, 2b, 2rbi….Juan Centeno had three hits and is batting .296 this season.