The Yankees' second-round pick hit two home runs and drove in four runs Monday night during Class A Short-Season Staten Island's 8-7 win over Tri-City in 11 innings. It was the catcher's first multi-homer game as a pro, and the feat gave him four roundtrippers in his last four contests.
O'Brien opened up the scoring with a two-run blast in the first inning. He brought home two more with a homer in the sixth that tied the game, 5-5.
The 22-year-old finished 2-for-5. He was also intentionally walked in the ninth with one out and two runners in scoring position.
O'Brien is batting .196 for the Yankees after Monday's performance. That's his closest mark to .200 since July 11, his fourth game in the New York-Penn League. A big reason behind the slow start was a wrist injury he suffered after he was hit by a pitch in April while at the University of Miami.
The malady didn't keep the Florida native, who transferred from Bethune-Cookman for his senior year, from leading the Hurricanes in batting average (.340), on-base percentage (.441), slugging percentage (.626), homers (10) and RBIs.
With those numbers, the Yankees felt comfortable taking him in the second round (94th overall) in June's First-Year Player Draft. That represented a one-round bump from 2011, when he was taken in the third round by the Rockies, but chose not to sign. But because of a slow recovery from the injury, O'Brien had not been able to replicate his college stats until recently.
In his last four games, the catcher is 5-for-16 with four of those hits being homers. Before that, he only had three longballs in his first 122 at-bats for Staten Island. His recent run has vaulted him into a tie for third on the short-season circuit with seven homers.
On Monday, Matt Snyder's RBI double in the top of the 11th proved to be the game-winner. The first baseman finished 2-for-5 with two RBIs and two runs scored.
Preston Tucker finished a triple shy of the cycle, drove in three runs and scored three times for the ValleyCats.