Lazaro Armenteros had his best performance of the season as he looks to end April on a high note.The A's No. 4 prospect reached base four times, hit a first-inning homer, scored three runs and drove in a pair to lead Class A Advanced Stockton to a 5-3 win at San Jose
Lazaro Armenteros had his best performance of the season as he looks to end April on a high note.
The A's No. 4 prospect reached base four times, hit a first-inning homer, scored three runs and drove in a pair to lead Class A Advanced Stockton to a 5-3 win at San Jose on Saturday night.
Armenteros took a 3-2 pitch from Giants starter Caleb Baragar over the left field wall to open the scoring, providing 28th-ranked A's prospect Brady Feigl (2-0) a lead he did not relinquish. The 19-year-old also walked and scored in the third, doubled home seventh-ranked Jameson Hannah in the fifth and walked to lead off the seventh.
"He just really shrunk his strike zone down and swung at good pitches," Stockton hitting coach Brian McArn said. "And when he got pitches in his zone, he put a good swing on them and hit them hard."
Gameday box score
The Cuban left fielder came into the game batting .215, with hits in two of his previous 18 at-bats. But McArn said Armenteros has been working on pitch selection in the batting cage, staying inside and using a shorter swing. He's struck out 35 times in 68 at-bats in his first season in the California League, but his big night at the plate brought his average up to .235 with a .388 on-base percentage and .456 slugging percentage.
"Tonight, he was able to get in some good hitting counts and got good pitches to hit," McArn said. "And when he got them, he didn't miss them."
McArn stays on his star pupil to get pitches to hit in the zone and not chase early in counts. California League pitchers are seeing Armenteros' strikeout numbers and trying to get him to offer at pitches out of the zone, the coach said.
"A bunch of at-bats should help with that," McArn added. "All he needs is that experience and plate appearances. And as long as he can lay off that, they're gonna have to come in his zone. And when he does, he can't miss it."
Armenteros batted .277/.374/.401 in 79 games with Class A Beloit in his first taste of full-season ball. He hit eight homers and drove in 39 runs but fanned 115 times in 292 at-bats with the Snappers, missing nearly all of June with a quad injury. Despite the low home run total, McArn said that Armenteros has tremendous power.
"When he touches it, the ball flies off his bat," he added. "It's just a matter of him getting pitches to hit. I'm looking forward to seeing more good things from him."
Batting right behind Armenteros, A's No. 24 prospect Alfonso Rivas went 3-for-4 with a walk, an RBI and a run scored, while 15th-ranked Nick Allen had a hit and a stolen base for the Ports.
Feigl gave up three runs on seven hits and a walk with three strikeouts over six innings. Pat Krall gave up a hit in the ninth before nailing down his first full-season save.
Logan Baldwin had two hits, including a two-run homer, out of the ninth spot in the Giants lineup.
Shlomo Sprung is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/sprungonsports>@sprungonsports