Lux homers twice in Drillers' matinee

Dodgers No. 2 prospect slugging 1.130 in day games

Gavin Lux ranks third in the Texas League in slugging and total bases and fourth in OPS. (Tammy Tucker/

By Joe Bloss / | June 12, 2019 7:02 PM

If the sun is up and Gavin Lux is playing baseball, there's a pretty good chance he's swinging for extra bases.

The second-ranked Dodgers prospect entered Wednesday with some lopsided day-night splits, slugging 1.073 in 10 day games but .384 in 43 moonlit contests. Then he mashed two homers in Double-A Tulsa's matinee at Dr Pepper Ballpark, a 6-1 win over Frisco, to boost his daytime slugging percentage to 1.130.

Video: Drillers' Lux homers on first pitch

Lux's career numbers don't follow the trend. So is it just an anomaly in 2019? He has no idea.

"I do like day games, though," he said. "I think just the vibe -- you get there and you're not on the field hitting BP and doing all that. You just get there, do your routine in the cage and then you just go play. I think day games feel a little more laidback, but it could just completely random, you know?"

The first pitch between the Drillers and RoughRiders was thrown at 12:10 p.m. It came out from Rangers No. 8 prospect Jonathan Hernandez and it was the fastball Lux expected. It popped off his bat and landed on the lawn just beyond the wall in right-center field.

Gameday box score

Hernandez (2-5) has allowed a home run on the first pitch of a game four times this season.

Lux kept swinging. He went down on strikes against the right-hander in the third, but he sat on a slider when he came up in the fifth and ripped another first-pitch dinger, a 421-footer that sailed a little farther and scored an extra run because Josh Thole had led off the frame with a single.

"I kind of had a good idea of what was coming," Lux said.

Video: Drillers' Lux hits second homer

The multi-homer effort was Lux's second of the season -- the other, of course, being a day game against Corpus Christi on May 6 -- and brought his big fly total to 13, tied for the Texas League lead with the Hooks' Granden Goetzman. Despite playing far fewer games during the day, eight of those 13 have come under the sun.

Altogether, the 21-year-old is hitting .305 with a .897 OPS. Lux has recorded three straight multi-hit games after his average dipped 32 points from May 28 to June 8. He credited the turnaround to some fine-tuning he and Tulsa's coaching staff have done to his mechanics. His leg kick and hands, he said, are better synced now.

"I've felt a lot better," Lux said. "I think the last few games have been way better than the last two weeks or so."

2019 MiLB include

Tenth-ranked Dodgers prospect DJ Peters added a two-run double in the sixth and Chris Parmelee provided insurance with a solo shot off James Jones in the ninth.

The support was more than enough for Drillers starter Dustin May. The No. 3 Dodgers prospect threw 10 of his first 11 pitches for balls, issuing back-to-back walks in the first inning, but settled in. Two of the three hits he gave up came in the second and set up Josh Altmann's sacrifice fly, which produced the RoughRiders' lone run. May (3-5) earned his first win since April 28 after striking out three and walking four over 6 2/3 innings, which is tied for the deepest into a game he's pitched this season.

Jordan Sheffield and No. 25 Dodgers prospect Marshall Kasowski combined to strike out five and blank Frisco over the final 2 1/3 frames.

Joe Bloss is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @jtbloss. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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