Byron Buxton started Wednesday night's game 12 points off the lead in the Midwest League batting race. It took him roughly four hours to erase that gap.
The Twins' No. 2 prospect recorded the first five-hit game of his brief professional career and scored three times as Class A Cedar Rapids rolled to 14-5 romp over Quad Cities.
Buxton was 5-for-6 with a pair of triples, driving in a run and falling a homer shy of the cycle after missing three games with a bruised thumb.
"Yeah, my last two at-bats, I took a few hacks," Buxton told The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette. "I felt pretty good tonight. I hit the ball, I hit the ball well. Considering I was off for three days with this thumb injury, I was well-rested. I was seeing the ball real good tonight, I hit the ball hard."
Selected second overall pick in the 2012 Draft, Buxton was selected to play in the Midwest League All-Star Game earlier Wednesday. He squared off against Astros' No. 2 prospect and fellow All-Star Carlos Correa, who went 1-for-4 with an RBI for the River Bandits.
"Just thankful that I got selected for the All-Star team," Buxton told the newspaper. "We'll be on the same All-Star team together, so we'll get to play together as teammates."
MLB.com's No. 18 overall prospect leads the league with a .348 average and 58 runs scored in 53 games. Buxton also ranks second with 118 total bases, fourth with 26 stolen bases and sixth with 40 RBIs -- all in his first full season as a pro.
The 19-year-old outfielder will be joined at the All-Star Game by seven of his Cedar Rapids teammates, including Twins No. 18 prospect Jorge Polanco and Dalton Hicks, who combined for six hits and six RBIs on Wednesday.
"Well, it's good for the kids, it's good for them to get recognized," Kernels manager Jake Mauer told the Gazette. "It's something nice that the other managers in the league voted them in, so that's always nice to get recognized and everything. Hope they go out there and have a good experience."
The Kernels set team records for runs and hits in an inning, scoring 10 times on 11 hits in the fourth. They also totaled season highs with 14 hits, six doubles and three triples as every player in the lineup drove in a run and scored at least once.
After Cedar Rapids starter Hein Robb pitched 3 1/3 innings, Alex Muren (4-0) tossed 3 2/3 scoreless frames for the win.