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Fixing Wieters Swing


Greg Pappas

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I hate to say it, I REALLY do... but Matt Wieters inspires zero confidence in me that he's the feared hitter that I/we envisioned after he was so dominate in the minors. He was the top prospect in baseball, and a sure-fire superstar. What happened?

His defense is very good, and there is that for us... an important thing to remember certainly. But I am not focusing on that aspect here, but rather the almost pitiful flailing we so often see when he bats. There seems to be something terribly wrong with his swing. I am by no means an expert on swing mechanics, but he appears to have a slow bat and little force behind the ball after connecting. Maybe he'll start crushing the ball, and this thread will turn to dust... but my concerns seem valid. Can Pressley fix his swing, or is this the player we'll have for years to come?

Thoughts?

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I was very encouraged at the end of spring training when I read he was working on changing his swing. He had a decent last week and I thought he looked good at the plate the first game in Tampa with a notably faster swing. Since then it's been crap. Can't argue that he's been a rock behind the plate but his offense is awful.

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I try not to even think about this because I just get discouraged. Hopefully once the other bats get hot, he'll be able to ride on their coattails and gain some confidence. It seems like every other at bat he's starting out 0-2.

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We've talked about this a lot and I repeat what I have said before. He should go to a lighter bat. A slow bat is normally corrected this way. Maybe he needs to work in a weight room a little bit. He also appears to have the bat lower to his shoulder. He needs to get the bat more upright as well.

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I just don't understand why he wouldn't use a lighter bat or work on forearm strength. Doing a ton of wrist curls and stuff did wonders for my bat speed in high school. But I'd imagine that at this level they would already do this simple stuff, its puzzling.

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I know very little about scouting, but Wieters' problems don't seem to be mechanical to me. I think it's mostly mental, maybe lacking confidence or maybe thinking too much. Whatever it is, he has absolutely no conviction at the plate.

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Although it is early in his career, I see many comparisons to another firstt round pick, Jason Veritek. He came to the Majors with hype that was quite similar to Weiters. He was a solid Defensive Catcher with a career batting average of .258. I believe that Weiters woll provide better offensive numbers and will be solid on defense. A good everyday catcher with some pop in his bat is hard to find and if he continues to progress in all phases of his game, he will a vital part of this team for many years. With all of hype he came up with, many of us may have had unrealistic expections.

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With our regular lineup, he is the biggest hole offensively. Although, I think his defense and calling of the game make him our most valuable player.

It sucks, because I root for him to succeed at the plate more than anyone else. I just don't think it's going to happen.

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