Olivares nets Sod Poodles' first hat trick

Padres No. 23 prospect smacks homers in first three at-bats

Edward Olivares leads the Texas League in homers, RBIs, slugging percentage and extra-base hits. (John Moore/Amarillo Sod Poodles)

By Duane Cross / MiLB.com | May 5, 2019 8:01 PM

If you believe the adage that April showers bring May flowers, Edward Olivares is in full bloom.

The Padres' No. 23 prospect recorded the first three-homer game in team history and drove in five runs to power Double-A Amarillo to an 8-5 victory over Arkansas on Sunday at Hodgetown.

Video: Sod Poodles' Olivares hits third homer

It was the second straight three-hit game for Olivares, who's 10-for-23 (.435) with four homers, seven RBIs and seven runs scored in five games this month.

"Pretty much, like [Saturday], the success comes from my approach," he said through hitting coach Raul Padron, who served as an interprter. "I was looking for pitches to drive, to put a good swing on. For the most part, I was able to stick to the plan and got good swings on the ball. Thankfully, they were three home runs.

"Routine, timing and approach have helped me. My work ethic has changed. Day by day, I want to have good swings."

Gameday box score

Rodrigo Orozco started the bottom of the first inning with a single off right-hander Darren McCaughan. Olivares followed by drilling a ball off the center field wall that caromed away from Aaron Knapp while he motored around the bases for an inside-the-park homer, giving Amarillo a 2-0 lead four pitches into the game. It extended his hit streak to six games.

Signed as an international free agent in 2014, the 23-year-old from Venezuela came to the dish in the second after Padres No. 17 prospect Buddy Reed stroked a two-out double. McCaughan fell behind, 2-1, before Olivares cleared the left-field wall with another two-run homer.

Leading off the fourth against McCaughan, Olivares was in a 1-2 hole. After fouling a ball off, he struck again with a blast to left that extended Amarillo's lead to 7-0. It was his second career multi-homer game after going yard twice for Class A Advanced Lake Elsinore last Aug. 4.

"That's a first for me," Padron said. "I've been on teams where a guy had two home runs but never three. It was amazing, just a great feeling."

Olivares' bid for a perfect day ended in the fifth when he struck out against reliever Jack Anderson. He popped to first against Bryan Bonnell in the eighth.

"I love hitting," said Olivares, who had a career-best 17 long balls with Class A Lansing in the Blue Jays system in 2017. "I am trying to be consistent with my power, to drive balls. I still am working to get my body ready. I want to be that [power] guy in the lineup."

Acquired from Toronto in January 2018 in a trade for Yangervis Solarte, Olivares is 6-foot-2 and weighs 186 pounds. 

"He's still young. He does need more weight," Padron said. "I definitely like the way he goes to the plate and approaches his at-bats. He's still got a lot of work to do, but I believe he can be" a formidable hitter in the middle of the order.

Padres No. 15 prospect Hudson Potts registered his third straight multi-hit game, going 3-for-5 with a homer, two doubles and two runs scored, while Kyle Overstreet contributed two hits, an RBI and a run scored for the Sod Poodles.

2019 Minor League milestones

Reliever Travis Radke (2-0) picked up the win, allowing two hits and a walk while striking out five in two scoreless innings.

Amarillo starter Miguel Diaz, who is recovering from a torn meniscus, gave up two hits and three walks across three innings in his season debut. He struck out two.

McCaughan (2-2) was tagged with the loss after surrendering eight runs on 11 hits, including four homers, over 3 2/3 innings.

Jordan Cowan was 3-for-5 to lead the Travelers offense, while Mariners No. 4 prospect Evan White slugged his first Double-A homer and singled.

Duane Cross is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DuaneCrossMiLB. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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