Nolan Gorman is making it clear that his 2018 struggles in the Midwest League are far behind him.
St. Louis' top prospect went yard in consecutive innings for Class A Peoria on Monday night, making some noise with five RBIs in the Chiefs' 10-6 loss to the Timber Rattlers. It's a feat Gorman said he doesn't remember having done before in his life.
Wisconsin carried a shutout into the eighth inning, when the 19th overall pick in the 2018 Draft hit a three-run jack to left field off right-hander Justin Bullock. In the ninth, after Josh Shaw contributed an RBI single, the left-handed hitter stepped in against Bullock again and slugged another opposite-field homer.
Video: Chiefs' Gorman homers again
Gorman, who turns 19 on May 10, struggled for Peoria after a callup from Rookie Advanced Johnson City last August. In 25 games, he hit .202 with a .280 on-base percentage, striking out 39 times in 94 at-bats.
"Last year kind of slowed down at the end, just kind of trying to do too much in a way," Gorman said.
So during the offseason and in Spring Training, the Arizona high school product said he tried to improve his approach as a hitter.
"You don't have to try super hard to get the big hits or get hits that you need," he said.
Gorman said his father, Brian, was and remains instrumental to his success at the plate, helping him come into each at bat with a focused mind-set.
"We talk every day," the younger Gorman said. "He was out there during Spring Training for a little bit, but during the offseason, he really talked about having an approach every time I come to the plate. He knows a lot about the game just from studying it. I give credit to him for helping me understand what needs to be done every time you step into the box."
Gameday box score
Now starting his first full season in Peoria, it's been a different story early on for the third baseman. Gorman has 10 hits in his first 21 at-bats with eight RBIs and a 1.542 OPS.
It's not his first successful stretch as a pro. In 38 Appalachian League games, the Phoenix, Arizona, native sported a .350/.443/.664 slash line with 11 homers, 10 doubles and a triple. He delivered his first career two-homer game against Kingsport on June 30, and he was promoted to Peoria for his Midwest League debut on Aug. 8.
He went yard twice in an Aug. 20 game against Quad Cities, then pulled off the trick a third time on Aug. 24 against Beloit. That 10-0 win over the Snappers was the resumption of a game suspended on July 1, meaning Gorman is technically in the books for a two-homer game in the Appalachian League one day and another in the Midwest League the next.
2019 MiLB include
On Monday, he recorded his third multi-hit effort in the past four games, and he's hit safely in all five he's played in this year.
"It goes back to keeping things simple and not trying to do too much," Gorman said. "That, I think is the biggest key."
The 6-foot-1, 210-pound infielder was known for his home run prowess before entering the pros, winning the 2017 High School Home Run Derby at All-Star weekend in Miami, and he won another derby later that month in the Under Armor All-America game.
No. 27 Milwaukee prospect Adam Hill scattered five hits and a pair of walks while fanning six over five scoreless innings to earn the win in his full-season debut.
Yeison Coca went 4-for-4 with a triple, three RBIs, a stolen base and a run scored for the Timber Rattlers.