Vladimir Guerrero. Probably no more needs to be said. All one hsa to do is watch Vladdy up there flailing away at any pitch this side of the universe, and it's obvious. Vladdy goes up to the plate with one thing in mind: see the ball, hit the ball. Which is great in T-ball. But major league pitchers have a funny habit of throwing it where they want it - not where you do.
Friday's game, June 8. A great win - that almost got away due to a wasted opportunity in the 8th inning. You know the moment. First and third, one out, the man Vladdy at the plate. Perfect situation. Star hitter, game on the line. This is what Vladdy is paid those millions for. First pitch, up and in, no chance to hit it, the perfect chance to go up in the count, except for one problem... Vladdy swung. Weak grounder, double play. With two strikes, protecting the plate, okay, sure, swing at the pitcher's pitch. First pitch of the count... uh, no.
Saturday's game. Down 2-1. 9th inning. Vladdy up there, chance to be a hero, or at least start a rally. First pitch, swing. Okay, almost a strike. Progress. Second pitch, so far outside the catcher had to stretch. Swing again? If you're Vladdy, sure, why not. See the ball, swing at the ball. Then swing at the ball again. Why wait for YOUR pitch when you can swing at the pitcher's pitch?
When Vladdy hits it hard, no one hits it better. And we all know about the toes to nose thing. But it's getting tiring watching Vladdy give at bats away. The team's run production, as predicted, has gone down since his return. Vladdy needs to adjust to the situation once in a while. Sometimes the best thing Vladdy can do for the team is to not swing. Take a pitch. Wait for yours. Then hit it. Hit it hard.
But it might be too much to ask.