Thursday, May 22, 2014

Excerpt: "Jose Abreu"

"I rarely have nice things to say about players with a 7/1 K/UIBB, but in this case, I'm optimistic. Abreu need reps against major-league pitching, lots of them, so that he can begin to identify the pitches he can crush from the ones he can't even reach. He's made a huge leap in competition, and he's done so while maintaining his core skill -- power on contact -- which is a great sign. What Abreu can do, while his ankle heals, is work on pitch recognition. He can just stand in a batter's box, no bat in hand, while a pitcher throws to a catcher and he watches MLB stuff, learns what it looks like, learns how quickly he has to make the decision. There's a payoff to the practice. The more soft stuff outside the zone that Abreu takes, the more fastballs inside the zone he will earn, and that's where he's going to make his money."