George Springer has been slowing down his game and quickening the pulse of Texas League pitchers.
The Astros' No. 3 prospect hit his Minor League-leading 12th homer of the season and finished a triple shy of the cycle Saturday night as Double-A Corpus Christi rolled past visiting Frisco, 9-3.
After flying out in his first at-bat, Springer smacked an RBI double and scored in the third inning. He singled in the fourth and led off the seventh with a solo shot, capping his third three-hit night of the season.
"It was a line drive and it was one of those ones where I was looking for a good pitch to drive in a good count," Springer said of his homer. "It was one of those ones where you hit it and it happened to go out of the park."
The Connecticut native has gone deep four times this month, driving in nine runs in 10 games. He's batting .282 with a .974 OPS in May and attributes his success to slowing things down.
"The guys here are extremely talented and they have good command and extraordinary stuff," Springer said. "It's one of those things where you want to slow things down and hit the ball hard. Whatever happens after that happens."
Overall, Springer is batting .292 with a Texas League-leading 29 RBIs and a 1.033 OPS in 35 games. In addition to leading the Minors in homers, the 23-year-old outfielder ranks ninth with a .646 slugging percentage and is tied for fourth with 22 extra-base hits. Despite his early-season success, Springer feels he has more work to do before thinking about the next level.
"That's one of those things where I'm a young player and I have a lot to learn, and as of right now I play for the Corpus Christi Hooks," he said. "This is a game of quick adjustments and I think as a young player I have a lot to learn in all aspects of the game. The guys here, it doesn't matter who you're facing, he's going to have quality stuff and he's going to have a plan for you.
"It's a good start, but it's not about how you start, it's how you finish. Hopefully, this continues and I continue to hit the ball hard."
Mike Foltynewicz, the Astros' No. 7 prospect, allowed an unearned run on two hits over four innings for his first professional save in his second Double-A appearance. Springer came away impressed with the 21-year-old right-hander's stuff.
"He threw the ball great tonight, he's got an electric fastball," Springer said. "It's an incredible fastball, it's a swing-and-miss fastball, and [he has] an outstanding slider to back that up. He's a great addition for us."
Hooks starter David Martinez (5-0) gave up two runs on six hits and struck out three over five innings. He shares the league lead with five wins.
Enrique Hernandez slugged a two-run homer and Erik Castro was 2-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored for Corpus Christi.