PAWTUCKET — With three home runs over three consecutive days, one might suspect that Bryce Brentz would be content with his power numbers at the plate for the Pawtucket Red Sox.
Brentz slugged a three-run homer on Saturday and followed that up with solo shots on Monday and Tuesday at McCoy Stadium, putting him into the team lead with 14 home runs.
“I’m just trying to be consistent — April was down, May was up and this (June) has been a little more in the middle,” Brentz said in the soggy PawSox dugout prior to Tuesday’s postponed game with Buffalo.
The PawSox left fielder had a slow start to the season in April, hitting just .161 with two HR’s and nine RBI. May proved to be his best month, hitting .322 with five HR’s and 18 RBI.
Thus far for June. Brentz is batting .246 with seven HRs and 15 RBI.
“It’s a long season,” the 30-year-old Brentz said of his productivity. “That’s baseball, you have your ups and downs.”
Oddly enough, Brentz has nearly identical numbers at home (.238 with seven HRs and 20 RBI) as he does on the road (.253 with seven HRs and 18 RBI).
In 58 games with the PawSox this season, he has 45 hits and 24 walks for a .335 OBP to go with 23 extra-base hits and a .522 slugging percentage while driving in 38 runs.
“Honestly, I haven’t paid any attention to that, I might just look at it on the scoreboard when I’m up at bat,” said Brentz. “I try not to look. They put it up on the board — it’s hard not to see it.”
Brentz spent the entire 2017 season with the PawSox he was tied for fifth place among all minor league hitters with a career-best 31 HR’s. But with no indication of being in Boston’s future plans after attending spring training in 2018, his rights were transferred to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
His stay with the NL team did not last long, being waived and then claimed by the New York Mets, who stationed him all season with their Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas.
That transaction soured when he fouled a ball off of his foot, breaking it and landing on the disabled list until August.
“I just try to be consistent with the bat power,” Brentz said.
Drafted by the Red Sox in 2010 out of Middle Tennessee State, Brentz says, “I’m happy to be back here (in the Red Sox organization).”
Over his span of 383 games in a PawSox uniform, dating back to 2012, Brentz has hit 72 home runs and driven in 241 runs.
“Some days, you don’t feel good and walk away with a few hits and some days you feel good and you don’t get anything,” he said. “For the most part, I’m taking more good swings. I’m just trying to be consistent and not force things.”
FOUL BALLS – While the PawSox were at a season-worst 13 games under .500, Buffalo was 15-3 in its last 18 games with a seven-game win streak. The PawSox were 5-13 in their last 18, losing six of seven … In a dozen starts for the PawSox this season, starting pitcher Erasmo Rodriguez has just two wins, one since the middle of April, working into the sixth inning just four times … OF Gorkys Hernandez, who played 142 games with San Francisco last year, had started 21 consecutive games and was hitting .312 in June with 11 RBI and 19 runs scored … Recently acquired infielder Chris Owings, who played in 106 games with Arizona last year, has five hits in five games, without striking out in 20 at-bats.