Brinson powers up to lead Sky Sox rout

Brewers top prospect falls triple shy of cycle, knocks in five runs

Lewis Brinson sports a 1.058 OPS with five extra-base hits and six RBIs this season. (Bobby Stevens/ MiLB.com)

By Michael Leboff / MiLB.com | April 18, 2017 11:15 PM ET

Needing a triple to complete the cycle, Lewis Brinson had the full endorsement of his dugout to go for three bases. 

"I had no idea until the guys on the bench were telling me to go for the triple if I hit it in the gap, and then I was like, 'Oh my God, I do need a triple,'" Brinson said. "It was definitely on my mind, but I was just trying to get some barrel on and it's up to the ball from there."

Video: Brinson clubs one

Milwaukee's top prospect drove in his fifth run of the game with a single to left field, completing a four-hit night to lead Triple-A Colorado Springs to a 14-4 romp over Memphis at Security Service Field on Tuesday. 

"I told everyone I was going to do it, but I had Kyle Wren in front of me," Brinson chortled. "It was good baserunning by him to stay at second base."

The base knock completed another impressive outing for the center fielder, who dislocated the pinkie finger on his left hand on a head-first slide against Omaha on Opening Day. Since returning from the injury on April 13, Brinson is hitting .346 with two homers and six RBIs in five games. 

"It's fully behind me now. I feel great and have no issues with the finger," the Florida native said. "I've been able to stay even-keel so far, even with the time off, I'm just focused on staying consistent. I'm not worrying about my average or how many home runs I have. Instead I'm just trying to find the barrel consistently, and wherever the ball goes after that isn't up to me."

After flying out to center in the first, Brinson hit an RBI double to right in the second. 


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"I knew they were going to work me up and in and I went in with a gameplan of not chasing too high up and making them pitch to my strengths," MLB.com's No. 16 overall prospect said. "I had a good strategy going in and I executed it well."

In the third, Brinson turned on an 0-1 fastball from Memphis starter Chris Ellis (0-2) and parked it in the left-field bleachers for a three-run homer.

"Ellis started me with a fastball in and went back in there, and I was ready for it," Brinson said. "The pitch was definitely off the plate, so I'm not sure how I got the barrel to it, but somehow I got it out. It gives me confidence to know that I can hit a pitcher's pitch, even if it was down and off the plate. It's nice knowing I can get to their good pitches."

It marked the second time this season that the 2012 first-round pick has taken the Cardinals No. 28 prospect deep. 

"Pitchers at this level can make adjustments. I did chase up a couple of times the last time we played, so I was expecting Ellis to try and get me to chase up with two strikes," Brinson explained. "I was able to lay off chasing and find the barrel a few times."

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Brewers No. 10 prospect Brett Phillips went 2-for-5 with an RBI double. Ivan De Jesus Jr. collected three hits -- including a double -- and scored once for Colorado Springs.

The Sky Sox got some offense from starting pitcher Paolo Espino (2-0), who went 2-for-2 with three RBIs. The 30-year-old right-hander came around to score on Brinson's homer.

"It was awesome seeing his smiling face at home plate," the 2012 first-round pick added. "I was kind of shocked with how he hit tonight, to be honest. When we last played Memphis, it looked like he hadn't swung a bat in a while, but tonight it all came together for him at the plate and on the mound, he got us the win."

Espino allowed four runs on eight hits and recorded five strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings. 

Michael Leboff is a contributor to MiLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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