Robert Brender, @robertbrender on TwitterTucson Padres (SD) 3, @ Las Vegas 51s 11
The tremendous offensive season for 2b Wilmer Flores (pictured) continued Thursday night at Cashman Field in the 51s 11-3 win over the Tucson Padres. The 21-year-old went 4 for 5, with a pair of homers, his PCL-leading 33rd double, four runs batted in and a pair of runs scored.
Flores’ great night started in the opening inning when he laced a double to left field, extending his hitting streak to eight games. It’s the third straight game he’s doubled and he has eight in the 51s last 10 contests. In the 3rd inning, he launched his 11th homer of the season to the opposite field, giving Vegas a 2-1 lead. His next at-bat in the 5th, he smacked a two-run homer to left field as part of a five run rally, putting Las Vegas comfortably ahead.
The Venezuela native leads the 51s in almost every offensive category including: rbi (74 Leads PCL), HR (12), BA (.325), OPS (.898), hits (118), TB (195) and the aforementioned doubles. His offensive game is ready for the next step and his defense has improved dramatically according to many in the Mets organization. It’s only a matter of time before he makes the jump to the next level, whether it be with the Mets or with another team after a trade.
Matt den Dekker has settled in nicely after he struggled following several months on the DL. Batting sixth in the lineup, den Dekker went 3 for 4 with his second homer in as many days and three runs scored. He has seven hits in his last 15 trips to the plate (.466) since June 8.
Right fielder Jamie Hoffmann also had a three-hit night with three rbi, lifting his batting average to .270. He had been 1 for his previous 15 coming in and hadn’t had a multi-hit game since collecting two knocks June 29.
RHP Rafael Montero started for the 51s but was on a 40 pitch count so he could be ready to throw in the MLB Futures Game as part of All Star week at Citi Field. That was enough to get him through two scoreless innings before being replaced by Justin Hampson.
Notes: Zach Lutz hit his 10th HR in the 5th inning. He’s hit safely in seven of eight….Ruben Tejada collected two singles.