Steer raps out five hits for E-Twins

Third-round pick slaps pair of doubles, scores three times

Spencer Steer raised his average 48 points to .338 with his perfect night at the plate. (Kassi Butcher/Elizabethton Twins)

By Duane Cross / | July 12, 2019 11:34 PM

Spencer Steer has played in 19 Minor League games and he's had multiple hits in seven of them.

But nothing in his fledgling career compared to Friday night.

The Twins' third-round pick in last month's Draft reached base in all six plate appearances, going 5-for-5 with two doubles and three runs scored as Rookie Advanced Elizabethton rolled to a 16-6 victory over Burlington at Joe O'Brien Field.

Gameday box score

"I've never had a five-hit game, not even in Little League," he said. "It was special, especially with my parents in the stands."

Steer walked in the first inning against right-hander Delvin Capellan and scored on a three-run homer by Albee Weiss. He singled to left field with one out in the second and came around on fourth-round pick Seth Gray's grand slam as the Twins took a 7-0 lead.

The knock was the spark he needed. Coming into Friday night's game, Steer was 1-for-13 over the last four games as his average dropped to .290. He's tied for fourth in the Appalchian League with a .338 average.

"A hit through the 5-6 hole," he recalled. "It was a two-strike curveball; I was in battle mode. It was good to see that ball get through.

"The past three, four games, I've been hitting the ball hard, just right at guys. It was good to find a hole and get rewarded."

In the third, the 21-year-old shortstop greeted lefty A.J. Franklin with a double to left and added a two-out single to center in the fourth before he lined another base hit to center in the sixth off southpaw Patrick Smith.

Steer completed his first five-hit night as a pro with a double to left off righty Donavin Buck in the eighth and scored on a base hit by Max Smith.

"It's baseball," the University of Oregon product said. "You can have a broken-bat single or you can smoke a ball to the wall and a guy makes a diving play. As a batter, it's about small victories. The ball is out of my control after I hit it. Just knowing you did everything right, took a good swing, whatever happens can't carry over to the next at-bat.

Standing on deck in the eighth, he admitted thinking about a five-hit night. His focus changed once he stepped into the batter's box, however.

"I've had a lot of games where I was 2-for-2 and ended up 2-for-5 or 2-for-4," he said. "Every at-bat is its own thing. You can't let overconfidence come into play. When I got in the box, I didn't change what had worked. I took the same approach as the first five at-bats."

Steer is second on the circuit with 25 hits and a .451 on-base percentage while his six doubles rank third.

After the game, Chris and Dana Steer greeted their son, although Spencer admitted hugging his mom wasn't easy.

"She had on a white T-shirt," he said with a laugh. "I was really dirty, just disgusting after the game. I said, 'Mom, you're going to get dirty.' Then I hugged my dad. ... It's awesome to have them here, watching me chase the dream."

2019 MiLB include

Weiss went 4-for-5 with two dingers, a double and a career-high six RBIs, marking his second two-homer game in three contests. Janigson Villalobos also went yard twice and Gray contributed three of Elizabethton's season-high 20 hits.

Osiris German (2-0) picked up the win in relief, tossing three one-hit frames while striking out six.

Burlington's Logan Porter hit a two-run homer, his fifth of the season.

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

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