Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Indians Hitters Have A New Approach

CLEVELAND, OH - Indians Manager Eric Wedge is confident that the slumping offense is about to turn the corner. Wedge, talking about Travis Hafner, said "he's been stroking the ball to all parts of the field during BP, we are all very encouraged by this. We've seen improvement in most of the other guys recently as well." Wedge attributed the marked improvement to a new plan-of-attack implemented by Hitting Coach Derek Shelton.

Talking with Shelton, LFL learned his new strategies included recently investing in a half dozen Nintendo Wii consoles with the MLB Power Pros game. Shelton explained, "They've been averaging 10 runs and 16 hits when playing computer controlled Central Division opponents in the game. Of course they had to tweak their player ratings and download some cheats from the internet, but I still think it is a good sign." Shelton continued, "Pronk's batting something like .600 with an OPS of 1.400! I don't see how that can't pour over into real-time game situations. It has too, right?"

Shelton further explained how they also purchased a few Derek Jeter Hurricane Batting Trainers and the players are required to take 250 practice swings on one before each game. Shelton reasoned, "Jeter wouldn't put his name on something that doesn't work, plus we got some free Reaction Balls for the infielders. Peralta and Blake play with their balls before every game."

The final approach was to purchase several Ripken Baseball: The Fundamentals of Hitting DVDs. Players are required to watch the video after every game that they post an 0-for. Shelton defended his decision, "A lot of people question why I would select Ripken's video. They say that his career batting average is .276. My response to that is, hey, for most of our guys, .276 would be a vast improvement. You have to set reasonable goals for yourself, you know."

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