For Jimmy Cesario, there has been no cold streak during the 2010 season.
The Modesto Nuts infielder/designated hitter has spent all summer enjoying various levels of warmth at the plate, but the heat he's bringing right now is approaching a new level.
Cesario had three hits, including the go-ahead homer, for his fifth straight multi-hit game as the Nuts rallied for a 6-4 victory over Lancaster.
"This has been a good little streak," Cesario said. "There are ups and downs during the season, so I'm enjoying this while knowing it's all about staying consistent with your routine and hitting the ball on the barrel."
Cesario started the year as Modesto's most pleasant surprise, hitting .413 in April. He followed that by hitting .296 in May, .321 in June and .307 in July.
While there were no prolonged slumps in there, there also have been few streaks like the one he's on right now.
Going back to the last game of the road trip, Cesario is 13-for-21 to raise his average to .327, good for a top 10 spot in the California League.
"He's a good hitter," said Nuts manager Jerry Weinstein. "None of this is by accident. He competes his butt off every game, every time at the plate. When he's not swinging well, he competes even better."
Ben Paulsen also homered for Modesto, but the real second half to the victory was yet another perfect night for the Nuts' bullpen.
Parker Frazier, making his first start at the High-A level, was aggressive in his 4º innings, allowing four runs on seventh hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
But after Frazier left, that was the end of Lancaster's offense. Alan DeRatt (2-0) retired all four batters he faced, Casey Weathers added two perfect innings and Adam Jorgenson struck out the side in the ninth.
That's 13 up, 13 down for the bullpen, one night after throwing four hitless innings in the loss to High Desert.
"We've given up one hit in the last nine innings during the second half of the last two games," Weinstein said. "DeRatt was outstanding tonight, Weathers was great and Jorgenson was even better."
Lancaster scored two runs in each of the second and third innings, and took a 4-1 lead when Jhon (CQ) Florention, in his second-ever at-bat for Lancaster, hit a ball over the scoreboard in left-center -- the second player ever to achieve that feat.
Paulsen' homer to right gave Modesto a run in the second, and Scott Robinson singled, stole two bases and scored on Eric Wetzel's ground ball in the third.
Modesto chased JetHawks' starter Robert Donovan (0-1) in the fourth, as Paulsen walked, Thomas Field lined an RBI double to left and Cesario followed with his homer to right for a 5-4 lead.
It was his fifth homer of the season, and first since May.
"Every now and then you'll get one out," Cesario said. "We talk to the coaches about hitting home runs and you just never can worry about it. If you hit the ball hard and just happen to get air under it, it will go out. But it's really not a part of my game."
Wetzel singled in the seventh and scored on Jordan Pacheco's single for the insurance run, but Lancaster's offense had been shut down by that point.
Which is something few teams have been able to do to Cesario at any time this season, who even got a double on an opposite-field jam-shot pop-up. When you're hot, that's what happens.
"They tell you that if you put the ball in play it just might find green," Cesario said. "Sometimes it works like that, where you can hit the ball well and it goes right at someone and you can get jammed and get a hit."
Bee staff writer Brian VanderBeek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2300.