After a 1-for-5 performance on Opening Day, top Nationals prospect Victor Robles was in stellar form in his second Triple-A game.
Robles, who turns 21 next month, went 4-for-4 with a walk, stealing a base, collecting an RBI and scoring twice -- including the go-ahead run in the ninth inning -- as Syracuse edged Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, 4-3, on Saturday afternoon at PNC Field. Top Yankees prospect Gleyber Torres slugged a two-run homer for his first hit of the year.
Gameday box score
"It was a huge day for Victor," Chiefs hitting coach Brian Daubach said. "He was aggressive on fastballs early in the game. The first three at-bats, he had first-pitch hits. [Friday] night, I think his timing was a little off. He was caught kind of in between. Maybe, you know, it's Opening Night and everybody's a little excited. He looked much more relaxed today."
Leading off, MLB.com's No. 6 overall prospect singled to left field against left-hander Josh Rogers in the first inning, continued to second on a throwing error by Torres and scored on a single by 22nd-ranked Nationals prospect Jose Marmolejos. Seizing an opportunity in the next frame, he bunted his way aboard.
"[That was] a perfect bunt single in the perfect spot," Daubach said. "He did it on his own. I think he maybe realized he swung at a first-pitch fastball [in the first at-bat] and he might get something soft. He got a changeup, and the third baseman was back."
After lining a single up the middle in the fourth, the native of the Dominican Republic knocked in a run with another base hit to left off Rogers in the sixth.
Video: Robles collects another knock for the Chiefs
Robles saw a total of six pitches in those four at-bats, then worked a six-pitch walk against righty Anyelo Gomez in the top of the ninth. He swiped second and scored on a throwing error by RailRiders catcher Kyle Higashioka.
"Probably his most impressive at-bat was the last one," said Daubach, a veteran of eight big league seasons. "He laid off two straight changeups in the dirt from a guy with an above-average changeup. Early in the game, he had hits on the first pitch, and to be able to lay off good changeups [later], it's very, very impressive. And he gets on with a walk, does a delay steal on his own and recognizes the ball kicks into the outfield and scores.
"The way he scored -- there are a lot of things you can teach guys in the Minor Leagues and the Major Leagues, and there are a lot of things we can't. That is a play you can't teach."
Video: Robles scores the Chiefs' go-ahead run
Robles batted .300/.382/.493 between Class A Advanced Potomac and Double-A Harrisburg last year, getting into 13 big league games. He went on to post a .389 on-base percentage and swat three homers in 13 games in the Arizona Fall League, where he was named MVP of the Fall Stars Game.
John Simms (1-0) earned the win in his season debut, allowing a hit and a walk and picking up a strikeout. Austin L. Adams worked around a single and a walk in the ninth to record the save.
Torres finished 1-or-5 after going hitless with three strikeouts in four at-bats in Friday night's opener. The No. 5 overall prospect had a .287/.383/.480 slash line between Double-A Trenton and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre last season but played only 55 games before undergoing Tommy John surgery on his left elbow.
Video: RailRiders' Torres homers for first hit of the year