Matt Davidson probably could've used Monday's game a month-and-a-half ago, but if he had to take the journey, he's ready to make the best of it now that he's on the other side.
After struggling mightily through his first months in Chicago's system, the top White Sox prospect bashed a pair of home runs in the nightcap of a doubleheader, including a walk-off shot in the 10th inning as Triple-A Charlotte topped Gwinnett, 7-5.
Davidson's second blast came off G-Braves reliever Terry Doyle, who allowed a one-out double to Jordan Danks before giving up the winning shot over the left-field wall. Davidson said he caught a 1-0 breaking pitch -- either a cutter or slider -- up over the plate and dropped the barrel on it.
The 23-year-old's first shot also went out to left to lead off the fourth against right-hander Cody Martin.
For Davidson, the two-homer game is the latest positive sign in what's been an encouraging week to end a promising month.
The 2009 D-backs' first-round pick has gone 8-for-26 (.308) with four homers in his past eight contests, raising his average to .201 with 15 round-trippers on the season. Monday brought his June average up to .239 with nine long balls and an .892 OPS.
The third baseman -- acquired from Arizona in the offseason for reliever Addison Reed -- was hitting .182 at the end of May with just six homers in 48 games. Davidson readily called the two-month stretch the worst performance of his career.
"I've struggled this season, but I'm glad," Davidson said. "I'll definitely never say I've figured it all out ever again. It keeps me humble, keeps me focusing forward and always trying to progress."
The prolonged slump wasn't an easy thing for Davidson to combat, but now that he thinks he's on the other side, he is convinced he's better off for it.
"If you were talking to me a month-and-a-half ago, I probably wouldn't be as positive as I am now," he said. "It's definitely been, I don't know, a life experience I'll never forget. I got down on myself, lost all confidence. Now I know that I've had to build my confidence from zero all the way back up.
"It's kind of cool to actually have to find that self-confidence when nothing is going right. Moving forward, I think that makes me a better player. Definitely, when you're hitting .250 … that's nothing compared to hitting .160 through the first two months. It always could be worse. I definitely believe that going through this will make me a better player and a more confident player in the long run."
Davidson's walk-off shot put an end to a marathon day for both teams. Monday marked the rare Minor League doubleheader with two nine-inning games. Gwinnett took the opener, 11-5, behind home runs by Joey Terdoslavich and Atlanta's No. 13 prospect Edward Salcedo.
"It's been kind of a hectic schedule," Davidson said. "I'm glad we were able to celebrate, though."