Urias hits 1st MLB homer, for real this time

Top infield prospect ignites five-run eighth vs. Rockies

September 1st, 2018

SAN DIEGO -- For the second time in three days, smashed a rocket into the seats down the right-field line at Petco Park, before circling the bases and celebrating with his teammates in the home dugout.

This time it counted.

Urias fell victim to a replay review that overturned what would've been his first career home run on Wednesday against the Mariners. There was never a doubt on Friday night.

"I knew this one was going to be fair when I hit it," Urias said with a grin, following the Padres' 7-0 victory over the Rockies.

With a man on first in the eighth, the 21-year-old second baseman swatted an 0-2 fastball from Rockies lefty Jake McGee into the "Petco Porch" area in right field. It gave San Diego a 4-0 lead.

"I don't know if that missile down the right-field line is going to be a normal occurrence for him," Padres skipper Andy Green said. "That's a unique stroke. It's a pretty impressive stroke. If he's got that repetitively, then it looks like Petco Park was built in advance for him, because that's a nice little place to dump home runs in, if you can do that."

Ranked as the No. 22 prospect in baseball by MLB Pipeline, Urias' Padres tenure is off to a fast start. He's reached base in seven of his 18 plate appearances. And, as evidenced by his opposite-field dinger, he's used the entire field to do so.

"I'm only trying to make hard contact and put it in play," Urias said. "I know I can use the whole field."

As if a fitting cap to the night, the fan who caught Urias' homer was decked out in a brown Urias jersey -- on a night the Padres were wearing their brown uniforms. After the game, the fan met Urias on the field to hand-deliver the baseball.

Urias has never been one to hit many home runs. He has 17 in five Minor League seasons. His line-drive stroke and on-base potential have always served as his offensive calling cards.

That doesn't mean he can't add a few dingers to his game. There's a history of smaller players growing into power at the big league level (with as the readiest example). Urias' nine homers this year are the most he's ever hit.

"I'm going to always be working, trying to be better," Urias said. "Obviously that's one part of my game I can improve on myself, and I think I can get better at that."

Added Green: "Home runs -- that's icing on the cake of what we know we're going to get from him. If he goes out and gets a walk and a knock a day, he's going to be a really productive baseball player with the way he defends the field."

followed with a homer of his own, before and doubled and scored as well. It was, perhaps, a preview of things to come -- Urias sparking a big inning, and the Padres' big boppers cashing in.

"He's a guy that's going to play a great role here, and he's going to be a very good big leaguer for a long time," Myers said. "He can really do very well at the top of an order when it comes to table-setting. Those are the guys that winning teams have at the top of their orders."