His team needed every single contribution Zack Collins provided.
The 11th-ranked White Sox prospect went 4-for-5, tied career highs with two homers and six RBIs and scored three times as Triple-A Charlotte walked off with a 13-12, 10-inning win over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Wednesday night at BB&T Ballpark.
Collins opened the Knights’ scoring in the first inning by sending Brody Koerner‘s 2-1 pitch over the right field wall for a three-run dinger. Leading off the third, he took strike one from the right-hander before singling to left.
After the first two Charlotte hitters reached in the fifth, the 24-year-old grounded a 1-1 offering from Koerner up the middle for an RBI single that sparked a four-run outburst.
Lefty Rex Brothers had better luck against Collins in the sixth as he flied to center. After Scranton/Wilkes-Barre scored eight runs in the seventh to take a 12-8 lead, the University of Miami product lined the first pitch he saw from righty J.P. Feyereisen for a solo blast to right with two outs in the eighth. It completed Collins’ fifth career multi-homer game and second this season.
With the Knights trailing, 12-10, Trey Michalczewski lined an RBI single to center in the ninth and Collins drew a seven-pitch walk with the bases loaded to produce the tying run against veteran righty David Hernandez. It was his sixth RBI, tying the career high he accomplished most recently on July 30 against Norfolk.
“Honestly, I try to zone out everything and stay in that at-bat and make sure I’m swinging at strikes,” Collins said after the game.
Charlotte walked it off in the 10th when Charlie Tilson lined a single to left and Paulo Orlando just beat the throw from Clint Frazier.
The 2016 first-round pick matched another personal best with his first four-hit game since July 28 against Pawtucket. He’s 7-for-16 against the RailRiders this season with three homers, seven RBIs and five runs scored.
Collins had a .250/.374/.482 slash line with nine homers, 39 RBIs and 33 runs scored in 50 International League games before he was promoted to Chicago on June 18. In nine games with the White Sox, he went 2-for-26 with one roundtripper and three RBIs. Since returning to Charlotte on July 16, he boasts a .350/.455/.638 slash line with five homers and 26 RBIs in 22 games.
With the win, the Knights climbed within 1 1/2 games of Durham for the International League Wild Card berth. The teams play a four-game series in Durham next week.
“I think this team definitely has the potential to get in that playoff race and then that big series against Durham next week is gonna be huge,” Collins said.
Tyler Wade doubled, singled and drove in three runs for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, while Trey Amburgey, Kyle Higashioka and Ryan McBroom had two RBIs apiece.
Shlomo Sprung is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @sprungonsportsThis story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.