Consistency is key for most Minor Leaguers, especially Colin Moran. On Saturday, it was an end to a trend that gave him the most positive results.
For the first time in four games, Moran did not strike out twice. The Marlins' No. 2 prospect made contact in each at-bat, going 3-for-5 with his third homer of the season and two runs scored as Class A Advanced Jupiter topped Daytona, 8-0.
"Just tried to get more consistent, make good contact, and tonight I was able get some to fall," the 21-year-old third baseman said. "Just trying to have a good approach every night, just trying to have a good mind-set every night."
Moran singled to right in his first at-bat and grounded out in his second before squaring up a curveball from Cubs starter Nathan Dorris for his third homer of the season and second in as many games.
"I was able to put a very good swing on it and it went over," he said.
Moran went the other way with a double to left in the seventh to put him within a triple of his first career cycle. With a runner on second in the eighth, that milestone was not on his mind.
"Just trying to take advantage of the situation," the University of North Carolina product said. "I was just trying to put more runs on the board."
MLB.com's No. 43 overall prospect grounded out but ended the night without a strikeout in his sixth three-hit game of the season. Passing his games played total from last year, Moran already has tallied more hits and doubles, but he's also recorded more strikeouts.
Selected sixth overall in last year's Draft, Moran has hit safely in 10 of his last 11 games, going 15-for-47.
"I've been seeing the ball well as of late and I'm just trying to keep things going," he said. "Working hard every day with the coaches, just trying to stay with my routine and keep working hard in order to have the best results."
After allowing five runs over 23 1/3 frames in his previous five starts, Hammerheads starter Austin Brice (4-5) picked up his first win since May 10. Miami's 19th-ranked prospect held Daytona to two hits and three walks while striking out seven over six innings.
"It was awesome," Moran said. "He's a great pitcher, he has great stuff and is a great competitor."
Dorris (2-2) took the loss after yielding two runs on six hits and three walks over 4 2/3 innings. He fanned three and has a 4.63 ERA in five games, including three starts, since being promoted from Class A Kane County.