Minor League camp has started, although the full camp won’t start until next week. Right now it’s a lot of bullpens and batting practice, which means for me it’s a time to get a lot of pictures, videos, and watch those bullpens and batting practice. It was two years ago that Gregory Polanco really opened up my eyes as a breakout candidate with his work in batting practice, and especially with his work once live batting practice began. It’s too early to say who the breakout guys are this year, but here are some photos and observations from the day.
I was impressed with Stetson Allie’s swing today. It was smooth, effortless, he put the barrel on the ball, and the ball really jumped off his bat. It looks like he might have cut down on the Jeff Bagwell style leg kick I saw when he was in Bradenton. Allie has the best raw power in the system, and that definitely showed. One disclaimer here is that he was hitting fastballs, and his issues come against off-speed pitches.
While I did like Allie’s swing, Josh Bell’s looked pretty bad. He was hitting well, but a few swings looked off balanced and awkward. I looked at some older videos and couldn’t tell if there were any changes made to his swing, mostly due to the difference in angles.
Here’s Reese McGuire, who was working with a group of catchers today taking batting practice.
Tom Prince was instructing a group of prospects on the techniques of breaking for home from third base.
The group included Gift Ngoepe, Jin-De Jhang, Wyatt Mathisen, Josh Bell, and Barrett Barnes, with Bell being the only one who isn’t pictured below.