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Adell slugs first two big league homers

Top Angels prospect goes deep twice in blowout victory
Jo Adell had his only two-homer game at the Triple-A level erased by a rainout last season. (Alex Gallardo/AP)
August 30, 2020

Jo Adell had struggled a bit in his first taste of big league play, but he broke through on Saturday night -- and in emphatic fashion. The top Angels prospect clubbed the first two homers of his Major League career to help power the Halos to a 16-3 blowout win

Jo Adell had struggled a bit in his first taste of big league play, but he broke through on Saturday night -- and in emphatic fashion.

The top Angels prospect clubbed the first two homers of his Major League career to help power the Halos to a 16-3 blowout win over the Mariners at Angel Stadium. He finished 2-for-5 with three RBIs.

Adell stepped to the plate in the second inning after Justin Upton drew a leadoff walk. He sat back on a sinker from left-hander Justus Sheffield before turning on a 1-0 changeup and sending it deep over the left field fence into the covered seats.

"It was definitely a little bit of relief to get the first one out of the way," Adell told reporters after the game. "But I wasn't really too pressed about getting the ball in the air and trying to go deep and whatnot. I stuck with the process and just told myself, 'Hard through the middle' and met a changeup out in front and got under it, and things went from there."

"I had my head not quite focused and then it was the loudest sound," Angels manager Joe Maddon said. "That was the sound of a power hitter right there. It was a loud crack, and then I did get to see the flight and then I was able to see the replay."

MLB Pipeline's No. 6 overall prospect stepped to the dish again with two outs in the fourth but went down swinging. Los Angeles rallied for three runs in the fifth, but Adell wasn't able to get in on the action as Upton ended the inning with a groundout.

He wouldn't let that momentum stall, however, as he led off the sixth with another blast. This one went to right field off Aaron Fletcher, bouncing off the wall but striking it high enough to count as a roundtripper. Adell's second homer kick-started a four-run frame, and he actually came to bat again at the end of the inning but struck out with the bases loaded.

At 21 years and 143 days old, Adell became the youngest Angel to hit his first Major League homer since Mike Trout, who was 21 years and 54 days old when he went deep for the first time. He also became the fourth player in franchise history to club his first two career homers on the same day, joining Tom Brunansky (1981), Bob Jones (1976) and Leroy Stanton (1972).

The last time Adell went deep twice in the same game was Aug. 21, 2019, when he was with Triple-A Salt Lake. It wouldn't show up in the record book, however, as the game was halted due to rain in the fifth inning and the teams weren't scheduled to play again.

Through 18 games in The Show, Adell is batting .191/.247/.309 with the two homers, four RBIs and five runs scored.

"For me, it's exposure, it's education,” the Louisville native said. “My mom used to say that all the time. The more you get to see these pitchers and see what they're trying to do, the more you're able to make the adjustments and perform at a higher level. I think that's kind of what had to happen for me to have success.”

“He's becoming a little bit more comfortable being here,” Maddon added. “And as he does that, you're going to see what everybody else has seen when he was drafted or was playing in the Minor Leagues. Sometimes it's not easy.”

For Seattle, 10th-ranked prospect Jake Fraley went 0-for-3 with a walk and No. 19 Braden Bishop singled in a run in his lone at-bat after entering as a defensive substitution in the seventh. No. 20 Joey Gerber gave up a hit but retired the only other batter he faced and Fletcher surrendered four runs while recording two outs.

In other action:

Tigers 8, Twins 2 (1st game)

Tigers No. 18 prospect Bryan Garcia tossed a 1-2-3 seventh inning, striking out Max Kepler to cap the Game 1 win. The right-hander hasn’t allowed a hit in five of his last eight appearances and has given up three earned runs in 13 games this month. His ERA sits at 2.08 through 13 innings this season. Box score

Tigers 4, Twins 2 (2nd game)

Fifth-ranked Detroit prospect Tarik Skubal finally found his way into the win column for the first time in his big league career. The southpaw allowed two runs on three hits over five innings, striking out two without issuing a walk. The lone runs he gave up were scored on a sacrifice fly by Marwin Gonzalez in the second and a solo homer by Nelson Cruz in the fourth. Skubal dropped his ERA to 6.75 ERA through three starts. Box score

Dodgers 7, Rangers 4

Rangers No. 3 prospect Leody Taveras clubbed the first homer of his Major League career and drew a walk in his sixth game in The Show. The big fly was a solo shot in the third inning and came right after Ronald Guzman went deep. Taveras is batting .250/.368/.438 on the year. Top Dodgers prospect Gavin Lux went 0-for-4 in his season debut, while fourth-ranked Brusdar Graterol pitched around a pair of hits over 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. Box score

Royals 9, White Sox 6

No. 62 overall prospect Brady Singer didn’t factor in the decision of the Royals’ win, but he kept the homer-happy White Sox in the yard for most of his five innings on the mound. The right-hander allowed three runs on five hits and two walks with four strikeouts. No. 4 White Sox prospect Nick Madrigal singled in top prospect Luis Robert in the third and Edwin Encarnación crushed a two-run dinger off the 24-year-old in the fourth. Singer has a 5.19 ERA in seven Major League starts. Robert scored again during a 2-for-4 effort that brought his average and OPS up to .292 and .902, respectively. No. 17 White Sox prospect Zack Burdi took the loss, recording one out and serving up a pair of homers in Kansas City's five-run seventh. Box score

Astros 6, Athletics 3 (2nd game)

Astros No. 28 prospect Blake Taylor worked a hitless sixth inning, walking one and striking out one, to drop his ERA to 1.20. A's No. 11 prospect Jonah Heim was 0-for-2. Box score

Indians 2, Cardinals 1 (12 innings)

Indians No. 16 prospect James Karinchak blew his first save, a rare stumble in what has otherwise been a tremendous season. The right-hander allowed one run on two hits, bringing his ERA up to 1.02, but limited the damage by getting all three outs via the strikeout. Eleventh-ranked Cardinals prospect Genesis Cabrera also navigated his lone inning with three punchouts. He issued a walk but left with a trainer after trying to warm up for a second inning. Box score

Rays 4, Marlins 0

Rays No. 27 prospect Josh Fleming gave up three hits over 5 1/3 innings to get the win for the second time in as many Major League starts. He struck out six and did not walk a batter while dropping his ERA to 1.74 since he was promoted from the team’s alternate training site on Sunday. Facing his former team, fifth-ranked Marlins prospect Jesus Sanchez struck out in all three plate appearances. No. 8 prospect Lewin Diaz went 0-for-3 but drew a seventh-inning walk. Box score

Reds 6, Cubs 5 (2nd game)

Making his first relief appearance of the season, Cubs No. 6 prospect Adbert Alzolay pitched around a hit and a walk in a scoreless fourth inning. The 25-year-old right-hander recorded a pair of strikeouts to keep his ERA at 0.00. Sixth-ranked Reds prospect Jose Garcia singled off Alzolay but was thrown out trying to steal third and struck out in his other two plate appearances. Joel Kuhnel, Cincinnati’s No. 27 prospect, got the win in his second Major League outing. He gave up a pair of two-out singles in the seventh but retired Jason Kipnis on a line drive to left field before the Reds rallied for a walk-off win. Box score

Rockies 4, Padres 3

One night after his 11-game hitting streak was snapped, Padres No. 18 prospect Jake Cronenworth walked in the sixth inning, then ripped a two-run double in the eighth. He leads all rookies with a .348 batting average and nine doubles. Third-ranked Luis Patiño worked a 1-2-3 fifth and a scoreless sixth but was charged with a run after allowing a leadoff-single in the seventh to Matt Kemp , the only batter he faced in the inning. Box score

Jordan Wolf is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter: @byjordanwolf.