Andujar Putting Last Year Behind Him

Andujar has been very consistent in camp

TAMPA, FL - Statistically it wasn't a banner debut season for third baseman Miguel Andujar in 2012 even though there was real progress made behind the scenes. He says he learned a lot from last year though and the 18-year old feels like he is already making some big adjustments in preparation for the 2013 campaign.

"So far it's been good," Andujar said of camp through the help of a translator. "Thanks to God it has been working out good. I've been working out a lot and being productive so hopefully it's a good year this year."

He reported to camp noticeably stronger than a year ago. He says he put on eight pounds of muscle over the offseason even though he physically looks stronger.

And it has shown up in his hitting too. He hit a laser double off of the centerfield wall-eye last week, missing a home run by about two feet. While it was only a double, the fact that it went to centerfield in itself is a good sign.

"I feel bigger and stronger," he said. "I've been working a lot in the cages on the direction of my front foot a lot, making sure it's toward the pitcher. Last year I was opening up a bit too much to the left side.

"That's why I've been working on the direction of my front foot, it helps me use the whole field more. It will mean more at-bats, more hits, rather than just pulling the ball."

He readily admits that his simply pulled the ball way too much during his time in the Gulf Coast League last year, a correction he made during Instructional League this offseason and he has carried it over with him into Spring Training camp this year.

Tweaking his mechanics at the plate has had a palpable effect on his entire approach, his swing, and ultimately his production.

"I feel like I have a better recognition of the plate," he said. "With the stride going forward my eyes are right on top instead of going away. I feel a lot better with that too."

He is ready to put the results of last year behind him but take the lessons he learned with him into his second professional season this year.

"Last year is over with. This year I feel stronger, I'm hitting the ball better, and physically and mentally I'm a lot more confident.

"The things that I didn't do last year I think I'm going to be better at this year. I'm recognizing the pitches better in the strike zone and not just going out there hacking.

"I'm reading the pitchers better than last year too. I learned a lot about things from last year that I didn't do that I should do, and I'm going to do them this year.

"I feel a bit stronger, a little more pop. I'm excited and confident. Wherever I go this year I'm just excited to go there and play," he concluded.

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