The Solar Sox are struggling and not even Matt Szczur can be their one-man remedy.
The Cubs' No. 6 prospect homered and singled twice in five at-bats on Thursday afternoon in Mesa's 7-3 defeat to the Peoria Javelinas. The Solar Sox (5-14) sport the Arizona Fall League's worst record.
Playing center field and leading off, the right-handed hitting Szczur's second three-hit game raised his AFL batting average to .286 but had an opportunity to do more. He also came to bat with the bases loaded and two outs (the game-tying run standing at first base) in the eighth inning but grounded out to end the rally.
Javelinas starter Tim Crabbe (Reds) was charged with a run on three hits, including Szczur's third-inning solo shot, over three frames. Padres prospect Matt Stites earned the win after fanning three over 1 2/3 hitless innings of relief and fellow Padres farmhand Kevin Quackenbush picked up his fifth save with 1 1/3 perfect frames.
Solar Sox starter Nick Tropeano (Astros) gave up a hit and nothing else over two scoreless innings. He struck out four.
Reliever Clay Schrader (Orioles) was on the mound to start the Javelinas' four-run, game-turning sixth. Evan Bigley (Twins) tripled home a run, and Nate Roberts (Twins) singled home another. In fact, the right field-left field, combo combined to go 7-for-10 at the plate.
Roberts finished with four hits and Bigley was 3-for-5 with two runs scored.
Schrader (0-1) lasted just the one inning.
The Javelinas (12-9) ended a five-game skid.