Dodgers' Pages homers twice in monster night

June 8th, 2022

April showers bring May flowers, yet the month was anything but rosy for Andy Pages. However, the change of months has flipped a switch for baseball's No. 62 overall prospect.

Pages slugged a pair of solo homers and a triple to back a stellar performance from No. 18 Dodgers prospect Gavin Stone in Double-A Tulsa's 5-2 win against visiting Northwest Arkansas on Tuesday night.

Pages has gone deep three times in four games this month after leaving the yard three times in May when he batted .212 with a .733 OPS.

The difference, according to the 21-year-old, is simple.

"Just sticking to a better plan at the plate and it's paying off," said Pages through Tulsa trainer and interpreter Jesse Guffey.

Pages hit a career-high 31 homers last year with High-A Great Lakes, but has not found a consistent power stroke through the first two months of 2022. His homer on June 1 was his first since May 19, a span of 10 games and 37 at-bats and gave him six, far off his pace of last season.

"Last year, my focus was on hitting home runs," Pages admitted. "But with that came a lot of strikeouts. My focus this year was to make more contact, take better swings and be a better overall hitter. If the home runs come from that, then that's great."

It worked out for the Havana, Cuba, native in his first at-bat, sending his first long ball over the left-center-field fence. Pages collected his second triple of the year in his next at-bat and added to the Drillers' lead with his eighth round-tripper leading off the sixth inning. It marked the outfielder's first multihomer game of the season and eighth of his career.

The three-hit effort improved Pages' slash line to .256/.377/.489 with 23 extra-base hits and 31 RBIs in 48 games.

Although he doesn't feel the pitching is much different than what he faced last year with Great Lakes, Pages has learned a valuable lesson.

"I realized I need to make adjustments a lot quicker here," he said. "Teams changed the way they pitched me [last month] and I understood that I needed to make my own changes."

Signed to a free agent contract in 2018 at 17, Pages enjoyed solid seasons in 2018-2019 before breaking out last year. The 6-foot-1, 212-pounder established career highs in nearly every offensive category. Pages tied for seventh in home runs and batted .265/.394/.539 with 57 extra-base hits and 88 RBIs.

"I can't be swinging at bad pitches," Pages said. "I need to find my pitch and not let it pass. Developing more patience has been the biggest difference for me lately."

Buyoed by the early offense, Stone turned in his best outing of the season with a career-high 13 strikeouts across six scoreless frames. The 23-year-old has an 0.41 ERA in four starts since his promotion to Tulsa and a 0.96 mark with 65 punchouts in 47 innings in 10 starts overall.