8/7 Colvin taking a deep breath
Tyler Colvin planned on taking advantage of an off day Saturday and doing a little homework, talking to hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo and teammate Marlon Byrd. The rookie outfielder was not in the starting lineup Saturday for the Cubs. He’s 2-for-17 on this homestand including a bad at-bat Friday. The Cubs had two runners on and one out in the fifth inning when Colvin came to bat against the Reds’ Bronson Arroyo. Colvin popped up and the Cubs eventually lost, 3-0.
“Colvin has a tendency to widen the strike zone for himself,” Lou Piniella said after Friday’s game. “That’s something he’ll have to learn if he wants to be a really good professional hitter and RBI guy. It’s something young players have to go through and learn.”
It wasn’t pitch recognition that was the problem, Colvin said Saturday.
“It’s just relaxing up there and being confident,” Colvin said. “I go up there and I want to find a good pitch to hit with men on base. Usually that’s what I do. Lately I’ve been getting in those situations and I’m getting anxious and swinging at pitches out of the zone that they want me to swing at, not what I want to swing at.”
He knows that’s not real productive.
“You’re not supposed to swing at balls,” he said.
So if the problem isn’t a matter of seeing the strike zone, what is it?
“It’s not recognition — it’s being over anxious and making my mind up to swing before I even know what pitch is coming,” he said.
Does he need to take deep breaths?
“I need to take a step back when I know I’m anxious,” Colvin said. “I need to step out, re-group and go back at it. I’m having a hard time doing that.”
— Carrie Muskat