Hicks clears bases to help Solar Sox to win
Top Twins prospect delivers in sixth as Mesa holds off Phoenix
Crooked numbers are commonplace in the Arizona Fall League. The Twins' Aaron Hicks is proof of that.
Minnesota's top prospect smacked a three-RBI triple as part of the Mesa Solar Sox's five-run sixth inning and eventual 8-7 victory over the visiting Phoenix Desert Dogs on Thursday afternoon.
Mesa collected six hits in the eventful frame to break a 2-2 tie. Brian Ward (Orioles) and Xavier Avery (Orioles) each recorded an RBI hit, and in between, Hicks emptied the bases on a 1-2 pitch by Phoenix reliever Dan Burawa (Yankees).
It has been a streaky Fall League season for Hicks thus far. The center fielder had gone 0-for-4 at the plate in consecutive games entering Thursday, but preceded that with a 7-for-11 stretch over three games.
Hicks, the 14th overall Draftee in 2008, is batting .243 overall in the AFL. He hit .242 with 41 extra-base hits in 122 games at Class A Advanced Fort Myers.
Solar Sox pitching yielded only a harmless hit 5 2/3 frames through the game. Starter Cole DeVries (Twins) completed three no-hit innings. The 26-year-old right-hander struck out two and walked two.
Reliever Casey Lambert (Orioles) allowed a single to Corban Joseph (Yankees) in the fourth before Brett Jacobson (Twins) pitched 1 2/3 perfect frames. Jacobson left with the bases empty and two outs in the sixth, but Nathan Baker (Pirates) yielded three straight knocks-- a double by Brodie Greene (Reds) and RBI singles by A's prospects Grant Green and Michael Choice.
The Dogs added three runs over the seventh and eighth frames. No. 7 Blue Jays prospect Adeiny Hechavarria smacked his first AFL homer, a two-run shot that plated Cody Puckett (Reds).
Green drew a walk and Choice was hit by a pitch in the top of the ninth, bringing the potential go-ahead run to the plate, and Kevin Ahrens (Blue Jays) came through. Ahrens doubled home both Oakland prospects to tie the game, 7-7.
But Brian Dozier (Twins) led off the bottom half of the ninth with a walk and scored immediately on a double into center field by Junior Lake off of Dogs reliever Preston Claiborne (Yankees), whose record dropped to 0-2. Lake finished with a game-high three hits in five at-bats.
Andrew Pentis is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.