Javier Baez talks about struggles in first season with Detroit Tigers

When news broke that the Detroit Tigers had signed SS Javier Baez to a 6-year, $140 million deal, many fans were disappointed that the team did not sign Carlos Correa instead.

Personally, I was not thrilled at all with the signing as Baez led all of Major League Baseball with 184 strikeouts in 2021.

So far in his first season with the Tigers, Baez is batting just .204 with two home runs and 11 RBIs in 30 games. But to make things worse, it has been painful to watch Baez chase pitches that are a good foot off of the plate.

Prior to Wednesday’s finale against the Tampa Bay Rays, Baez spoke to the media about his struggles.

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“I’m just struggling right now,” he said.

“I got to make adjustments,” Báez said. “I’m just trying too much. I think I’m over-swinging, and when I keep doing that, it’s not going to work. I got to control the game and control my balance and all that stuff at the same time. But I just got to follow the ball and get back on that timing.”

“When it’s game time, I’m just going to go out there and play,” Báez said. “There’s time to practice, and there’s time to play. I’m going to go out there, play hard and see. Obviously, I make adjustments during the game, but I’m not going to think about it, because it’s too much and too hard to do that.”

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Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said that he is not about to try and stop Baez from being aggressive because that is the type of player he has been throughout his entire career.

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“We’ve got to get him inside the strike zone a little bit, but he’s going to chase,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “Like, he is. He has his whole career. We’ve got to harness it the best we can, but we’re not going to try to get him to be passive. We’ve got to get him to hunt pitches. … Javy is going to be an aggressive player, and we’re going to embrace him.”

If the Tigers are going to get going as a team offensively, Baez is going to start pulling his weight. Because if he doesn’t, and this trend continues, the Tigers will have wasted a lot of money on a player who could be on the decline.

 

 

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