Redbirds' O'Neill goes yard, plates four

Cardinals No. 4 prospect reaches 30-homer mark for second time

Tyler O'Neill ranks third in the Pacific Coast League in homers, three behind Fresno's A.J. Reed. (Memphis Redbirds)

By Alex Kraft / | September 3, 2017 1:34 AM

Tyler O'Neill has scuffled at times this season, but his power never stopped showing up.

The Cardinals' fourth-ranked prospect reached the 30-homer mark for the second time in his career on Saturday, collecting three hits and four RBIs before Triple-A Memphis fell to Colorado Springs, 14-11, at Security Service Field.

Acquired from the Mariners on July 21 for left-hander Marco Gonzales, O'Neill has gone deep 11 times in 35 games with the Redbirds. Before the deal, he hit 19 homers in 93 games with Tacoma.

Video: Redbirds' O'Neill hits 30th dinger

The 210-pound outfielder did his damage in the first inning on Saturday against Sky Sox starter Hiram Burgos. With runners on first and second, he pounced on the first pitch from the 30-year-old right-hander and drove it over the wall in right-center field. The blast was the 100th of his career and his fourth in five games.

After flying to right in the third and grounding out to second in the fourth, O'Neill delivered an RBI single to center in the sixth. He ended his night with a leadoff single in the ninth and scored on a double by Wilfredo Tovar.

Gameday box score's No. 96 overall prospect has 30 homers and 90 RBIs for the season, both the second-highest totals in his five-year Minor League career. While in Seattle's system, the 2013 third-round pick swatted 32 dingers in 2015 with Class A Advanced Bakersfield and drove in 102 runs a season ago with Double-A Jackson.

While O'Neill has a career-low .244 batting average in 128 Pacific Coast League games this year, he's hit for more power since the trade. His slugging percentage has jumped to .541 with the Redbirds, 62 points higher than with Tacoma, while his average has remained the same. And in his last six games, the 22-year-old Canadian is 8-for-23 (.348) with four homers and eight RBIs.

MiLB include

Jordan Schafer added three hits, including a double, and three RBIs for Memphis, while Tovar plated two runs with a pair of doubles.

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Redbirds reliever Arturo Reyes (5-5) took the loss after serving up five runs on six hits in one inning.

David Goforth (3-4) pitched three scoreless frames for the win, yielding two hits and fanning two.

Ninth-ranked Brewers prospect Mauricio Dubon went 3-for-5 with four RBIs and fell a triple shy of the cycle to power the Sky Sox. Chris Colabello was 4-for-5 and plated three runs, while Ivan De Jesus Jr. contributed four hits and an RBI.

Alex Kraft is a contributor to Follow and chat with him on Twitter @Alex_Kraft21. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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