It was jaw-dropping.That is how Triple-A Salt Lake hitting coach Brian Betancourth described Jarrett Parker's effort Thursday night.The Angels outfielder was perfect at the plate -- going 3-for-3 with a trifecta of dingers and a walk -- in the Bees' 13-7 loss to the Grizzlies at Chukchansi Park.
It was jaw-dropping.
That is how Triple-A Salt Lake hitting coach Brian Betancourth described Jarrett Parker's effort Thursday night.
The Angels outfielder was perfect at the plate -- going 3-for-3 with a trifecta of dingers and a walk -- in the Bees' 13-7 loss to the Grizzlies at Chukchansi Park.
Parker ended a drought of eight straight games without a tater while extending his hitting streak to five games and his on-base streak to eight. The 30-year-old is 9-for-20 with three dingers, a double, two walks, seven RBIs and four runs scored over his last five contests. His .462 OBP is tops in the Pacific Coast League, and his 1.086 OPS stands seventh on the circuit.
"He's been doing a really good job of getting good pitches to hit in the zone and he hasn't been missing them," Betancourth said. "When he sets his focus on that, the ball comes off really hot off his bat.
"This was the first [three-homer game] I've been a part of and it was a loud one. When they're hit that hard, it just lets you know how locked in they are. … What I get out of it is all the hard work they put in is paying off."
The second-round selection of the Giants in 2010 started his night by working an 11-pitch walk against Grizzlies right-hander Paolo Espino in the second inning. He was erased from the basepaths four pitches later when Wilfredo Tovar grounded into a fielder's choice to second base.
Gameday box score
After working the count full against Espino again in the fourth, Parker turned around the next pitch he saw from the Panama native and launched it beyond the fence in left-center.
"He takes his game plan very seriously and he studies up on the pitchers before each game," Betancourth said. "He's always very aware of who's pitching him, and he goes up there looking for pitches he can hit really hard. He doesn't chase really, he sticks with pitches he can handle. And when he does that, he doesn't miss."
The left-handed hitter led off the seventh against Espino. After jumping ahead, 2-0, he swung through an inside fastball and then fouled off an off-speed pitch away to level the count. The next offering came in right over the middle of the plate, and Parker belted it over the wall in right.
"He's been pretty consistent since he's been here after coming off the Injured List. He's just been going about his business the right way and just really focused on his work," Betancourth said. "Anything he hits is always hit hard. Everything off his bat is at a high exit velo -- I would say probably at least 100. He just consistently hits the ball really hard."
Parker's final at-bat came in the ninth. He led off the frame against Derek Self, who had just entered the game, but there was some familiarity that Betancourth thinks worked to Parker's advantage in the at-bat. After taking the righty's first two pitches low for balls, Self tried to throw a high heater that the Virginia product demolished well beyond the fence in right.
"We faced that guy last night and Parker is always focused on the game and tries to study what the other pitcher is doing and see what he's throwing to lefties -- and the guys always communicate within each other throughout the game" Betancourth said. " And that last one was right in his wheelhouse and he just put a good swing on it. I think the exit velo on it was 114 mph.
"They were all no-doubters, but that last one ... that was loud."
In the franchise's 26th season, Parker's feat marked the 11th three-homer game in team history and the third by a left-handed hitter.
Parker sports a .311/.447/.541 slash line with a .988 OPS. He has six dingers, eight doubles, a triple, 30 runs scored and 27 RBIs through his first 36 games with Salt Lake this season. Thursday was his third three-hit performance of the year, after outings on May 20 and May 1 -- when he knocked in a season-high five runs.
Anaheim's No. 27 prospectBrennon Lund tripled, doubled, drove in a run and scored for the Bees.
Washington's top prospectCarter Kieboom hammered his second triple of the season to left-center in the sixth. MLB.com's No. 25 overall prospect also walked and finished with a pair of RBIs and two runs scored. Yadiel Hernandez fell a homer shy of the cycle with five RBIs and two runs.
Rob Terranova is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter, @RobTnova24.