Sardinas marks big day with career high

Rangers shortstop stuffs the stat sheet in Myrtle Beach victory

Luis Sardinas is batting .386 with nine RBIs since May 5. (Tracy Proffitt/Hickory Crawdads)

By Ashley Marshall / Special to | May 16, 2013 9:22 PM ET

When 19-year-old Luis Sardinas went to sleep on Wednesday night, he was celebrating his first four-hit game. Today, as a 20-year-old, he repeated that feat while amassing the first five-RBI performance of his young career.

The Rangers' No. 3 prospect was 4-for-5 with a triple, a double, two singles, a stolen base and a run scored in the Class A Advanced Myrtle Beach Pelicans' 12-3 rout of the host Winston-Salem Dash.

Known more for his glove than his skills at the plate, Sardinas has eight hits and eight RBIs in his past two games and is hitting .386 over his previous 10 contests.

"It is my birthday and it is especially good with four base hits and five RBIs," Sardinas said. "I had a good day. My family is in Venezuela, but I will celebrate with my team."

Sardinas singled to left field and scored from first base on Jake Skole's double in the opening frame and he bunted for a base hit and stole second base in the second inning.

He then plated Chris Grayson with a one-out sacrifice fly in the fourth before tripling home two more runs in the sixth. An inning later, Sardinas laced a two-RBI double to center field

"He threw me a slider first pitch middle-in and I put the ball in play," Sardinas said of the triple. "I hit the ball hard and I was running hard. I kept going, going, going for three.

"The five RBIs, it is the first time in a professional game. I remember three and four, but not five. That is an impressive amount and I'm feeling good, but it is early in the season and I am going to keep working hard."

Sardinas came to the plate to lead off the ninth needing a dinger for the cycle, but he grounded out to first base.

"I was trying for one more hit, but the pitcher [Cody Winiarski] was pretty good. I was trying to get one more for five," he said.

"I had a good game today, but that is in the past. When I wake up in the morning, it is a new day. I come to the ballpark and I work hard every day in the cage and in batting practice. [Going 4-for-5] is pretty good."

The hitting was arguably the one thing missing from Sardinas' all-around game. His on-base percentage has never ended below .346 in his first three years of pro ball and he has has 54 career steals in 68 attempts. His glovework at shorstop, possibly his No. 1 tool, is already well above average.

Two of the things that have helped Sardinas at the plate are patience and his developing ability to handle southpaws. Both are coming along nicely for the 150-pound infielder who bats at the top of the Myrtle Beach lineup.

"My job, the first thing, is to see a lot of pitches," the switch-hitter said. "I want to work the count and get to 3-2 to see a lot of pitches.

"I have more power right-handed, but every day I see a lot of right-handed pitchers so I am getting more comfortable left-handed. The most important thing [left-handed] is to put the ball in play and run hard and try to get a base hit."

Jerad Eickhoff (3-2) allowed a run on four hits and a walk while striking out three batters over six innings to earn the victory. Designated hitter Trever Adams was 3-for-5 with a double, an RBI and a run scored and first baseman Kevin Torres added three hits, an RBI and a run.

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

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