Dahl breaks out in third game with Nuts

Rockies prospect hits first Cal League homer, falls double shy of cycle

David Dahl went 1-for-2 with a double in the South Atlantic League All-Star Game. (Tracy Proffitt/MiLB.com)

By Kelsie Heneghan / MiLB.com | July 27, 2014 2:30 AM ET

After his first two games in the California League didn't go the way he wanted, David Dahl tried not to stress too much.

The third time around, he showed why he's the Rockies' third-ranked prospect, going 3-for-4 with a solo homer and a triple as Class A Advanced Modesto beat visiting Inland Empire, 6-2, on Saturday night.

"I was really trying not to put much pressure of myself after I didn't get any hits the first two games. I knew I had a lot of games left to play," Dahl said. "But [Saturday], I was nervous and jumpy at the plate and anxious."

The 20-year-old outfielder went 0-for-8 with a pair of strikeouts in his first two games with the Nuts. He turned things around with his 12th three-hit game of the season, starting with a leadoff homer, his first in 38 games, in the bottom of the first inning.

"I was seeing the ball really well and put some really good swings on the ball," MLB.com's No. 55 overall prospect said. "Probably the longest I've gone since hitting a home run, but it feels good to get another one."

Dahl popped out in the third, then legged out his seventh triple of the season in the fifth.

"I hit it and I saw I hit it pretty good and it hit the wall softly and had a pretty good backspin," he said. "Then about halfway through second I realized I could turn it into a triple."

After singling in the sixth, Dahl found himself a double shy of the cycle. He was left in the on-deck circle in the eighth, however, and never got the chance to accomplish the feat.

Limited to 10 games last season after tearing his hamstring, Dahl batted .305 with 10 homers, 41 RBIs, 67 runs scored and 18 stolen bases in 88 games with Class A Asheville before earning a promotion to Modesto.

"I was really just trying to go up and put together really good at-bats and not get cheated on swings and really get quality at-bats," the Alabama native said. "It was really tough getting hurt and missing the whole season and missing those at-bats, but it feels good to get those at-bats and play every day again."

Rehabbing Rockies right-hander Jordan Lyles got the start for the Nuts and pitched 3 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing three hits while striking out four.

"It was cool to have a big leaguer throw for us," Dahl said. "He threw really well. He worked really fast, so we were in the dugout a lot. He's a really nice guy. He got us a good steak dinner."

Matt Flemer (9-7) followed Lyles and allowed two runs -- one earned -- on six hits with four strikeouts over 4 1/3 frames.

Kelsie Heneghan is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @Kelsie_Heneghan. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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