Locked in, Aces' Pollock goes 5-for-5

D-backs outfield prospect finding early success at Triple-A

A.J. Pollock hit .307 with 41 doubles last year. (Jordan Megenhardt/MiLB.com)

By Ashley Marshall / Special to MLB.com | April 6, 2012 9:53 PM ET

It's only two games into the Minor League season, so A.J. Pollock isn't letting success go to his head. Still, the D-backs outfield prospect is feeling pretty good about his transition to the Pacific Coast League.

The D-backs' No. 6 prospect went 5-for-5 with three doubles, three runs scored and an RBI on Friday as the Triple-A Reno Aces cruised to a 9-5 victory over the Colorado Springs Sky Sox.

After going 2-for-3 with a pair of walks, a double, an RBI and a run scored on Opening Day, the former first-round Draft pick is batting .875.

"Getting the result is good, but the process is more important," Pollock said. "I think that in a 140-game or so season you can beat yourself up for hitting a ball hard at someone, but I felt really good. It's only two games though, so I'm not going to let my head get too big."

Pollock singled, stole second and scored in the first inning, then pulled Major League veteran Guillermo Moscoso's 1-1 pitch down the left-field line for a double in the second.

After leading off the fifth with an opposite-field single, Pollock doubled home Cole Gillespie in the sixth after fouling off a pair of two-strike pitches from Zach Simmons.

The Notre Dame product wrapped up his first career five-hit performance with another double, a one-out line drive to left field, and scored on Evan Frey's two-base hit.

"[The ball] looks pretty big," Pollock said. "I always love being in the zone and feeling good at the plate. I stayed on the ball really well with two strikes, and that felt good.

"I watch the pitchers every inning from the dugout and let them dictate what I want to sit on. I don't try to do too much, I just try to stay up the middle. I don't try to pull the ball, but if they hang one, I'll rip it."

Selected 17th overall in the 2009 Draft, Pollock has reached base in nine of 10 plate appearances in the Aces' first two games.

Last year, he batted .307 with eight homers and 73 RBIs in 133 games with Double-A Mobile. He led the Southern League with 169 hits, including 41 doubles and five triples, stole 36 bases in 43 tries and scored a league-leading 103 runs. He was named a mid- and postseason All-Star and was named one of the D-backs' top outfielders by MiLB.com.

Pollock is not the only Arizona farmhand off to a hot start. Cody Ransom went 3-for-4 with a homer, double and four RBIs. Needing a triple to hit for the cycle when he came to the plate in the bottom of the eighth inning, he walked on four pitches.

"He comes to the ballpark with a game plan every day," Pollock said of Ransom, who bats third in the lineup. "I played with him in Spring Training and I picked his brain quite a bit because he knows what he's doing. He had a really good game today."

The Aces' offense provided more than enough support for starter Chris Jakubauskas (1-0), who yielded a run on three hits and a walk over six innings in his season debut.

Moscoso (0-1) took the loss after giving up a pair of runs on eight hits and a walk over five innings. He struck out six. Tim Wheeler was 2-for-5 with a run scored and Chad Tracy reached base four times for the Sky Sox.

Ashley Marshall is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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