It's safe to say the slump is over for Shea Langeliers. The fifth-ranked Braves prospect went 4-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored as Class A Rome held on for a 4-3 victory over Columbia on Sunday at State Mutual Stadium. It was his second four-hit game of the week.
It's safe to say the slump is over for Shea Langeliers.
The fifth-ranked Braves prospect went 4-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored as Class A Rome held on for a 4-3 victory over Columbia on Sunday at State Mutual Stadium. It was his second four-hit game of the week.
Langeliers roped a single to center field in the first inning on a 1-0 offering from Mets No. 25 prospect Christian James. The 21-year-old got to James again in the fourth, grounding a single to left and scoring on a base hit by Hagen Owenby to put Rome ahead for good, 2-1.
In the fifth, MLB.com's No. 67 overall prospect lined the right-hander's 2-1 pitch to left.
Gameday box score
With two outs in the seventh, Langeliers deposited a 2-2 fastball from southpaw Jake Simon into left-center to plate Braves No. 23 prospect Justin Dean, who walked and moved into scoring position with his South Atlantic League-leading 44th stolen base. The four hits matched the career high Langeliers established on Tuesday.
"He's been working ever since we got him," Rome hitting coach Bobby Moore said of this year's ninth overall pick's approach at the plate. "We let him do his thing and not try to change him. We want him to be comfortable and play his game.
"He's made a couple of adjustments with his direction and his alignment to the baseball by standing tighter with his front hip. He's been doing that lately by squaring some balls up and hitting to all fields."
A collaborative effort helped Langeliers get into a groove at the dish, according to Moore.
"We were just talking baseball. Talking hitting ... what you see and what you think, stuff like that," the hitting coach said. "We aren't trying to change anyone's swing. What they came in with is what they are doing this year. We talk about the approach. Not changing the hands or approach. We just want to let the kids play."
Amassing 85 at-bats in 22 home games, the Baylor product has amassed a .353/.432/.917 slash line with two taters and 20 RBIs. His road splits haven't been as favorable. He's batting .160 in 106 at-bats in 26 road contests.
"It's more preparation. When you are home, you have more preparation to work on things ... earlier in the cage and in batting practice," Moore said. "On the road, it's always a rush because you are in the visitors' cage and they only have one, so you can't work as long as you want to on a specific area. So, at home, you benefit because you have more time to work and get better."
The Major League veteran, who played for Kansas City in 1991, credited Langeliers for maturing as the catcher's 2019 campaign has wore on.
"He goes right in willing to learn the game to get better," Moore said. "Everything is status quo. You mention something to him, he's locked in and all in. He wants to get better. His goal is to get to the Major Leagues. He's going to work as hard as he can and be prepared to fulfill those dreams."
In 24 at-bats against the Fireflies, the right-handed slugger is batting .292 with seven hits, three runs scored and an RBI.
"When you start seeing the same pitchers, they start getting in a pattern against you," the coach noted. "He's going over each pitcher in the 'pen every day. You follow the guideline and see if they stick to the same gameplan. You stick to yours, but if they fall into the pattern, it makes it easier for the hitter to adjust to. They aren't guessing and can get the pitch they are looking for in a certain count.
"Information that we get nowadays is incredible. You can only benefit from it if you utilize it."
Before Sunday's performance, Langeliers was batting .206. He's hit safely in every game since to raise that mark to .246.
The Keller, Texas, native also nailed Chandler Avant trying to steal second in the seventh.
"I'm not a catching guy, but what I see is outstanding," Moore said. "The way he moves around behind the plate, the way he calls a game and he has a strong accurate arm. He's been awesome."
Over the past 10 games, the first-year pro is batting .357 (15-for-42) with 10 runs scored and five RBIs.
"You never want to slump," Moore laughed. "It's always nice to finish the season on a hot note and enter the offseason. The process of hard work every day. He already had a good swing on the baseball, it was just tightening it up."
Rehabbing from a right knee sprain, Atlanta's Austin Riley went 1-for-3 at the dish. Coincidentally, Langeliers was the first position player drafted by the Braves in the first round since the club took the outfielder in 2015.
Dan Stokes is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ByDanStokes.