HILLSBORO, Ore. (KTSM) – A year ago at this time, El Paso native and Coronado High School graduate Ivan Melendez was having one of the best seasons in college baseball history en route to winning the Golden Spikes Award at the University of Texas.
The first player in Longhorns history to ever win college baseball’s most prestigious individual award, Melendez is back to his old, familiar ways a year later.
Now playing in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization, for the High-A Hillsboro Hops in the Portland, Ore., suburbs, Melendez has been red-hot of late.
Thanks to a first inning home run on Tuesday evening in a 5-0 win over the Tri-City Dust Devils, Melendez has now homered in seven of his last 11 games for the Hops and is riding a 15-game hitting streak. Melendez went 1-2 with three RBI in Hillsboro’s win.
For the season, the Diamondbacks’ No. 8 prospect is hitting .253 with seven home runs and 20 RBI for the Hops in 24 games, while splitting time at first and third base.
The majority of his damage has come since he returned from the injured list, after he was hit in the face by a pitch on April 21 in a game vs. the Eugene Emeralds.
Melendez has had arguably the best month of his short professional career in May, hitting .308/.387/.723, with all seven of his homers and 19 of his RBI coming since he returned from the injury.
Thanks to the 15-game hitting streak, Melendez has also raised his season batting average by 182 points since May 4, when it dropped to a season-low .071.
If Melendez keeps up his hot streak, it may be just a matter of time before he receives a call-up to Double-A. A second-round pick by the Diamondbacks in last summer’s MLB Draft, Arizona hopes Melendez will be a big part of their long-term plans.