Tucker continues to mash for Grizzlies

Astros No. 2 prospect records another two-homer game

Kyle Tucker ranks third in the Pacific Coast League with a .560 slugging percentage. (Jesus Sepulveda/Fresno Grizzlies)

By Rob Terranova / MiLB.com | August 25, 2018 1:44 AM

The force is strong with Kyle Tucker.

The second-ranked Astros prospect bashed more two dingers and added a single on Friday in Triple-A Fresno's 7-5 defeat to Salt Lake at Chukchansi Park. He has five roundtrippers in his last three games.

Video: Fresno's Tucker homers

Over an extended stretch, the fifth overall pick in the 2015 Draft has eight homers and 15 RBIs in his last seven games with the Grizzlies. He's 18-for-32 during that span to raise his batting average 22 points to .325. Tucker accomplished all that around a 10-day stint with the big league club from Aug. 11-21.

"His bat-to-ball skills are second to none. He's really impressive to watch," Grizzlies skipper Rodney Linares told MiLB.com on Wednesday. "You can see him hit in a game and it looks like he had never hit in his life -- he can get fooled by three breaking balls in a row. But if comes back up again, that breaking ball better be in the dirt because if not, he's going to hit it out of the park."

Against the Bees, MLB.com's No. 8 overall prospect turned around the first pitch he saw from right-hander Ivan Pineyro in the first inning and lined it into left field for a single. He came in to score three batters later when J.D. Davis hammered a 3-1 pitch to left for a two-out single that pulled Fresno within 3-2.

Gameday box score

After Jake Marisnick took Pineyro deep leading off the third, Tucker went back-to-back with a blast to the opposite field that put the Grizzlies ahead for the first time.

Video: Tucker goes yard again

An inning later, the Tampa native worked the count full before squaring up a pitch from Pineyro and hammering it over the fence in center for another solo shot.

Reliever Akeel Morris (4-3) retired Tucker for the first time in the seventh when he got just under a high, inside fastball and flied to left. Facing veteran right-hander Junichi Tazawa in the ninth and, the 21-year-old got ahead, 2-0, before popping up a fastball to third base.

MiLB include

"Tuck's a man of little words, so it's good that he's opening up about stuff after being up a couple of times in the big leagues," Linares said Wednesday. "This is about him understanding that he's a big part of what we're trying to do, not only here but in the big leagues. He's going to be part of our big league club for a long time.

"The future is bright with this kid."

Astros No. 24 prospect Trent Thornton started for Fresno and gave up five on eight hits and a pair of walks with seven punchouts over six frames. The loss prevented the Grizzlies from clinching the Pacific Coast League Pacific Northern Division title.

Alberto Triunfel clubbed a one-out solo homer in the eighth to put Salt Lake in front for good.

Rob Terranova is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @RobTnova24. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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