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Loons' Capellan plates career-high six08/19/2013 11:39 PM ET
By Brandon Simes / MiLB.com
Sometimes one at-bat can turn a season around. In Jose Capellan's case, it may have been two.
Capellan doubled twice and drove in a career-high six runs in Class A Great Lakes' 12-5 win over Fort Wayne on Monday night at Dow Diamond.
"I was hitting during the day before the game and felt heavy with my swing," Capellan said. "During the game, the opportunities came to me and I was able to execute the way I know how to."
Capellan doubled to left in his first at-bat in the second inning, driving in a pair and moving the trail runner to third base. The right-handed hitter doubled to center in the fifth, this time plating all three runners. He added a sixth RBI with a sacrifice fly to right in the seventh.
The two hits tied a season high, which Capellan has done seven times, and the six RBIs tripled his previous season high. The catcher drove in four twice for the Rookie-level Arizona League Dodgers in 2011.
"This game reminds me a little bit of last year when I went to Ogden in a playoff game," he said. "I hurt my hand and couldn't play for five games, and the game after that when I was healthy, they put me in the lineup and I hit a home run on the first pitch I saw."
Loons manager Razor Shines has been pleased with Capellan's effort prior to the big night.
"Capellan smoked some baseballs and he had some good approaches at the plate," Shines said. "I'm happy for the kid because he's been catching his butt off all year and he's working really hard with [Great Lakes hitting coach] Mike (Eylward) on his approach at the plate."
The 22-year-old has been inconsistent offensively since signing with the Dodgers out of Santiago in the Dominican Republic prior to the 2009 season. Much of that inconsistency can be chalked up to small sample sizes. Capellan posted OPS marks of .641, .828, .691, and .871 in his first four seasons, but played only 50, 16, 25 and 34 games respectively.
Capellan is batting .357 in his last 10 games and .355 in August after hitting .250 in June and .230 in July. Monday's performance extended his hitting streak to six games.
"I've been working a lot, just trying to do my job," he said. "I've been getting to the cage early, practicing my swing, like I've been doing all year. It's not how you start a season, it's how you finish it. I'm very happy with my performance of late."
In April, the Dodgers prospect started off 1-for-20, prompting the organization to send him to extended spring training to right his offensive approach.
"I was there just one month working really hard and when I had the opportunity to get back here, I came back and ran with the chance to play often. Now my hard work is showing up," he said.
Devin Shines collected three hits, scored three times and drove in three runs. Webster Rivas singled twice, walked and added three runs.