MLB Pipeline's No. 73 prospect drove in a career-high six runs in a perfect 4-for-4 night during Double-A Binghamton’s thrilling back-and-forth 14-13 win over Erie. Baty clubbed a homer, two doubles, a single, walked once, and scored three times. It was his third career four-hit night, his second of the year. His six RBIs also marked a season high for a Binghamton player this year.
“It was awesome. Tonight, I was seeing it really well. They were executing a few pitches but I was staying the other way and staying within myself and doing my thing," said Baty. "It felt really good and I got to give credit to my teammates for getting on for me and getting me those RBIs.”
Baty made his eighth career start in left field and hit second in the Rumble Ponies' lineup. His first knock was a double roped into the left-center gap that one-hopped the wall. Baty scored two batters later on Wagner Lagrange’s two-run dinger, the first two runs scored in the game. When Baty came to the plate in the third, Binghamton was down 7-2. The 2019 first-rounder promptly deposited the first pitch he saw over the wall in center for a two-run shot, his first Double-A homer and RBIs.
The No. 5 third base prospect added two more RBIs to his ledger in the fourth inning with a two-run single that snuck past a diving Ryan Kreidler and cut Erie’s lead down to 8-7. He worked a six-pitch walk in the sixth before stepping into the box in the seventh with Binghamton down 11-10, two outs and the bases loaded. Baty then delivered the biggest hit of the night, a two-run double that one-hopped the left-field wall to give Binghamton a lead they would not relinquish. He scored on the next play; a two-run Mark Vientos single.
“I was pulling off a bit early, trying to do a little bit too much and not play my game. Tonight I was like ‘I’m just going to focus on the left-center gap and drive balls that way,’ and it worked out,” said Baty. "Coming up in those big spots helped me lock it in and I just tried to get runs for my team and win a ballgame.”
Baty credited Vientos with helping him get through a slow start to his Double-A career, as the fellow third basemen went through similar struggles when he first arrived in Binghamton. Vientos hit .231 with three homers in May to start the year, but has since raked his way to a .924 OPS and 17 homers on the year.
“We’ve been playing together for a little bit of time now, so he was just saying ‘I know you’re a great hitter and I know it’s going to come to you, you just got to grind it out,’” said Baty. “He knew I was going to break out at some point and have a big game at the Double-A level, so I really have to give him credit for having faith in me and telling me that.”
Prior to Saturday’s game, Baty owned a .392 OPS and was 5-for-36 at Double-A and yet to record an RBI. After dominating in Brooklyn to the tune of a .911 OPS with 14 doubles, seven homers and 34 RBIs in 51 games, Baty’s career-best night could spur a hot streak similar to the one he rode at the beginning of June. Baty’s seven-game hit streak from June 1-9 saw the 21-year-old go 13-for-24 with two double, five homers and 11 RBIs. Despite early struggles at the Double-A level, a hitter of Baty’s caliber figures it out more often than not.
“I was kind of lunging at the ball and I was trying to attack the ball instead of letting it come to me,” said Baty of his small post-callup slump. “These past couple weeks I’ve been grinding it out with our hitting coaches so to have this kind of game was awesome for sure.”