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Storm's Ramirez hits for the cycle
05/20/2007 10:20 PM ET
Apparently driving in seven runs in a game is not enough for Yordany Ramirez these days.

Two days after setting a career high with seven RBIs, Ramirez hit for the cycle and knocked in eight runs Sunday as the Lake Elsinore Storm capped a prolific weekend with a 21-6 rout of the Lancaster JetHawks.

"This is a first for me," Ramirez said of the cycle. "I can tell you that it's a good feeling."

Ramirez tripled with the bases loaded in the eighth inning to complete the rare feat. The 22-year-old center fielder said he was unaware he needed the triple until his teammates pointed it out.

"Someone told me I needed it. I said, 'For what?' Then I told him, 'OK, I'm gonna get it, let's do it,'" Ramirez said. "I just came around and hit it well into the gap."

Lake Elsinore, which opened the three-game series with a 30-0 romp, scored six runs in the fifth, a rally that was eclipsed by a 12-run eighth. Ramirez's three-run triple set the table for Craig Cooper, who belted a grand slam off reliever Blake Maxwell.

Kyle Blanks, who went 11-for-18 with 11 RBIs in the series, added a solo homer.

"It's unbelievable, we're enjoying it," Ramirez said of the 63-run weekend. "We're really working hard, all the guys, we try to put in a good at-bat. We don't try to hit home runs, we just try to take good swings. And that's just happened."

Despite that mind-set, six of Lake Elsinore's nine batters went deep Sunday. Ramirez found the seats in the fourth, singled in the second and laced a three-run double in the fifth. He said his key has been patience at the plate.

"I just try to hit the ball well, I try to see a lot of pitches," said Ramirez, a non-drafted free agent who signed with San Diego in 2001. "I don't swing at the first pitch, and that's helped me a lot. I see a lot of pitches and I can recognize them and hit in a better count."

Ramirez drove in 15 of the 63 runs scored over the weekend by the Storm (23-21), and he said his teammates and manager have helped him reach this point.

"I have a good support with the team," he explained. "I was struggling in the beginning, but I have a better attitude now. I know I can hit, I believe it.

"They help me with my mind, keep going. We have a new manager, Carlos Lezcano, who enjoys the game and he tries to be part of us and just another player. And we enjoy it."

Lake Elsinore's Richie Daigle (3-2) enjoyed the support, winning his second straight start. He allowed six runs -- five earned -- on seven hits in five innings with a walk and three strikeouts.

Lancaster starter Michael Rozier (1-4) was tagged for eight runs on 10 hits and a pair of walks, striking out five in 4 2/3 innings. J.T. Zink, fresh out of extended spring training, served up a home run on the first pitch he threw. He surrendered eight runs on six hits and two walks, retiring just one batter.

The JetHawks (23-20) weren't in immediate trouble, however. Yahmed Yema's two-run homer in the third gave them a 5-1 lead. Chuck Jeroloman belted his first homer in the fourth.

In between the 30-0 romp and Ramirez's cycle, Lancaster's Aaron Bates set a California League record by homering four times in Saturday's 14-12 come-from-behind win.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.