Rosario goes deep again in Rox win

Prospect batting .350 with two homers, seven RBIs in spring

By David Heck / Special to | March 15, 2012 5:52 PM ET

After getting a taste of the Majors last year, Wilin Rosario is making it clear that he's ready for more.

The Rockies' No. 3 prospect went 2-for-3 with a homer, two RBIs and two runs scored Thursday to lead his team to a 7-5 victory over a split Cubs squad in Cactus League play.

Rosario's longball came in his first at-bat, when he took a 1-0 pitch from Rodrigo Lopez over the left-field wall. He later scored on a two-run shot by third baseman Jordan Pacheco in the sixth. The 23-year-old backstop previously went deep earlier in the week against the Padres, a game in which he drove in four runs.

Signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2006, Rosario batted .249 with 21 homers in 102 games at Double-A last year. He made his Major League debut Sept. 6 and went on to hit .204 with three homers in a 16-game stint with the Rockies.

Though he entered Spring Training without much of a chance at making the club, Rosario has flashed a hot bat of late. Following his most recent performance, the native of the Dominican Republic is batting .350 (7-for-20) with two homers, seven RBIs and four runs scored. His main competition for the Rockies' catching job, veteran Ramon Hernandez, is batting .333 (5-for-15) with two RBIs this spring.

On the other side, the Cubs were led by shortstop Junior Lake, who smacked a three-run homer that put his team up 4-3 in the sixth. Ranked as Chicago's No. 10 prospect, Lake hit .279 with 12 homers and 38 steals between Class A Advanced and Double-A last year. He went on to find more success in the Arizona Fall League, where he batted .296 with five homers and 18 steals in 28 games.

The 21-year-old has not performed as well in Spring Training, batting just .167 (2-for-12) with two extra-base hits through Thursday's contest. He has continued to show his speed, however, swiping three bases without being caught.

Also enjoying a strong game for the Cubs was first baseman Bryan LaHair, who went 3-for-5 with a double and a run scored. The 29-year-old is expected to make an Opening Day roster for the first time while Chicago allows top prospect Anthony Rizzo to get more seasoning in the Minors.

David Heck is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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