It's hard to find anyone in the Pioneer League hotter than Reed Rohlman.
The Royals prospect kept rolling on Tuesday, driving in a career-high seven runs with a homer, a triple and a single in Rookie-level Idaho Falls' 15-8 victory over Helena at Melaleuca Field.
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"Lately, I've been trying to simplify things and slow the game down as much as possible," Rohlman said. "I don't want to jump at early pitches, so I've been working the count until I find a pitch that I can hit. I've been working with our coaches, trying to all do the same thing, but slowing the game down is the biggest thing."
Rohlman homered in the first inning, sending a 1-0 pitch from starter Justin Bullock over the right-center fence to plate Kyle Isbel and Nathan Eaton. It was his third blast of the season, all of which have come in the last four games.
"He got behind on a changeup," Rohlman said of the right-hander. "That's probably one of the biggest things I've been working on, staying back on those hanging off-speed pitches. He threw a changeup that stayed up in the zone, I waited back and put a good swing on it."
The 23-year-old made it two hits in as many at-bats in the third, singling to right to score Isbel again. With the bases loaded in the eighth, Rohlman tripled to center. The seven RBIs eclipsed the career high of five he set on Friday against Orem.
"Baseball is a mental game," he said. "Guys hitting in front of me have been absolutely amazing this season. They've put me in great opportunities for nights like tonight where I can have seven RBIs. A lot of credit goes to the guys starting the lineup to give us 3-4-5 hitters chances to get RBIs."
Selected in the 35th round of last year's Draft out of Clemson, Rohlman is 17-for-35 (.486) with three homers, two triples, two doubles and 16 RBIs during an eight-game hitting streak. He leads the Pioneer League with 26 RBIs, shares the top spot with 13 extra-base hits and ranks second with 50 total bases.
"I'm just tyring to have as much fun as possible," he said. "I've realized that I'm out here playing a game. I have been pretty hard on myself, but this year I told myself I'm going to have as much fun as possible, be a good teammate. Things are working out well."
Rohlman has been held hitless five times in 22 games this season. After finishing his college season with Clemson and jumping right to the Appalachian League last season, being able to start the year with Idaho Falls with a clean slate has left him feeling refreshed at the plate.
"It's a huge difference," he said. "In college, you're playing four or five games a week and here it's mostly games every day of the week. Knowing that coming in this year and preparing my body in the offseason and doing that for six months, it's made a big difference knowing what to expect this year."
Eaton went 4-for-4 with a walk, a stolen base, three RBIs and three runs scored, while Isbel was 3-for-4 with a walk, a steal and four runs scored.
David Fry, a seventh-round pick in last month's Draft, smacked two of Helena's four homers and collected a career-high four RBIs for Helena.