César Puello continued his Pacific Coast League resurgence with a career night on Wednesday. The 26-year-old outfielder put up his first career five-hit game, going 5-for-6 while driving in five runs and falling a homer shy of the cycle, as Triple-A Salt Lake cruised to a 19-7 rout of Fresno at
César Puello continued his Pacific Coast League resurgence with a career night on Wednesday.
The 26-year-old outfielder put up his first career five-hit game, going 5-for-6 while driving in five runs and falling a homer shy of the cycle, as Triple-A Salt Lake cruised to a 19-7 rout of Fresno at Chukchansi Park. He also stole two bases and scored four times in his second career five-RBI effort.
Gameday box score
"It's good, but you've just got to keep working and keep your focus to the next game," the native of the Dominican Republic said. "Hopefully, we get another 'W' tomorrow."
Puello, who began his career with the Mets and served a suspension in 2013 in connection with the Biogenesis scandal, hit .247 in 43 games with Triple-A Round Rock at the start of the season and was released on June 1. Two days later, the Angels signed him and sent him to Salt Lake, where he's batting .409/.454/682 with 17 extra-base hits in 26 games. He's swatted three homers this week.
"I'm very grateful for God for giving me the [opportunity]. I just come to the field and work hard and keep the faith," Puello said. "Good things always happen when you keep your mindset. I feel good, but you can't get [overconfident], either. I just have to go to the field and do my best and work hard on a different area [of my game]. There's always something to get better."
In the first inning, he knocked the fifth pitch he saw from Casey Coleman into center field for a two-run double. He got aboard on a fielder's choice two innings later and stole second and third. Facing Coleman again in the fifth, he lined an opposite-field triple to plate two more runs.
Puello stepped in against left-hander Brian Holmes in the sixth and poked a single through the left side, then -- knowing he needed a homer for the cycle, reached on an infield hit in the eighth.
"[My teammates] were joking about it. Before the last at-bat, I was looking for it, but I didn't get the pitch I wanted," he said. "I was looking for the homer, but sometimes you can't hit a high line drive."
Salt Lake batted around, giving Puello another shot at a long ball, but he slapped an RBI single to right off righty Aaron West.
Kaleb Cowart and Rey Navarro each had four RBIs, with Cowart -- who hit for the cycle on June 22 -- homering and scoring four times for the Bees.
Tyler White and A.J. Reed went yard for the Grizzlies.
Josh Jackson is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow and interact with him on Twitter, @JoshJacksonMiLB.