Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Blalock on his 2nd half struggles... 

The DMN with a piece on Hank Blalock's second half struggles last year...

Blalock seems to lay the blame on getting worn down as the season went on, and on pitchers taking advantage of his overaggressiveness at the plate. The latter issue is one that it seems will likely make Blalock vulnerable to some slumps over his career...he's one of those batters who, when he is going well, jumps on the pitcher early in the count. Pitchers pick up on that and stay away from the strike zone early on, and Blalock tends to get over-aggressive, flailing at pitches out of the zone, or the ones that Grady Fuson refers to as the "bitch pitch", the strike that you want to let go by early in the count because even if you make contact, you aren't going to make good contact.

You'd like to see Blalock strike a balance, working the count to draw a healthy number of walks while still retaining his natural aggressiveness, even though the two seem to be largely incompatible. But it is encouraging to see Blalock acknowledge the source of his problems in the second half of last year, and be realistic about what he needs to do to improve and continue to get better.

Hank was still getting used to facing left hand pitchers......I think that he will be more productive at the plate and look more like the first half of last year and be a 30 or 40 home run hitter this year......
Either way, I'm just glad he rebounded from his awful start to the 2002 season before being sent back down.

Hopefully Hank and Tex are in Arlington for many years to come.
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