Gerber has monster night for Connecticut

Tigers prospect homers twice, drives in eight runs in ninth pro game

Michael Gerber doubled his season RBI total by driving in eight runs on Saturday. (Kevin Pataky/

By Robert Emrich / | June 28, 2014 11:00 PM ET

Michael Gerber is right when he said he can't get a hit every at-bat. These days, it's every other at-bat.

The Tigers prospect went 4-for-5 with a pair of homers and a career-high eight RBIs on Saturday night as Short-Season Connecticut routed Tri-City, 10-2, at Dodd Stadium.

Gerber got the Tigers on the board quickly, tripling home two runs in the bottom of the first inning and scoring on an error by first baseman A.J. Reed. An inning later, he slugged a three-run homer to open a 6-3 lead. After flying out in the fifth, he led off the seventh with his third homer of the season, then wrapped up his big night with a two-run double in the eighth. , finishing a single short of the cycle.

"I've been seeing the ball real well, I'm comfortable at the plate and I think the biggest thing is that I'm not trying to do too much," Gerber said. "I dialed it back. [The first home run] was a fastball middle of the plate and it kind of started the rally."

Gerber, who was unaware of his RBI total after the double, was focused on putting together a good at-bat in the eighth.

"Obviously, I knew it was my last at-bat," he said. "I'm thinking just have a good at-bat. I know I'm not going to get a hit every time I go up. Obviously, I'm pleased."

The 21-year-old outfielder out of Creighton University is batting .514 with three homers and 16 RBIs in nine games. He's riding a six-game hitting streak and already has fallen just one hit shy of a cycle three times.

"Guys have better stuff and throw harder than they do in college," he said. "Mentally, I'm just trying to stay with the same approach. I've been real comfortable at the plate and I've been real comfortable off the field.

"It's amazing. Coming in your first year you want to show everyone you belong. Nights like this make me feel like I do belong."

Garrett Mattlage reached base five times and scored three runs for the Tigers, while Ross Kivett also scored three times.

Connecticut starter Chase Edwards (2-1) was the beneficiary of the outburst, giving up two runs on five hits while fanning four over eight innings.

Austin Chrismon fell to 1-2 after giving up six runs -- five earned -- on six hits over three innings for the ValleyCats.

Robert Emrich is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @RobertEmrich. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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