ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick writes in his latest spring training blog about Drew Stubbs’ attempt to simplify his swing and cut down on his strikeout totals-
“After hitting a career-low .213 with a .610 OPS in Cincinnati last season, outfielder Drew Stubbs went home to Texas looking to make some changes. He spent the winter working with Ronnie Ortegon, the Reds’ new assistant hitting coach, and junked his leg kick in favor of a more abbreviated toe tap that he will use as a trigger mechanism in his swing.
Stubbs is hoping to emulate the success of former Arizona Fall League teammate Austin Jackson, who took a major step forward as a hitter after jettisoning his leg kick for a toe tap. Jackson raised his batting average from .249 to .300 and cut his strikeout total markedly in 137 games with Detroit.”
For his career Stubbs strikes out an alarming once per every 3.05 at bats. He has struck out 539 times in the last 3 seasons. He has also stolen 100 bases and hit 51 home runs over that same span.
Stubbs should get plenty of chances to show off that new approach at the plate despite the suddenly crowded Indians outfield.
[Related: Indians will not look to trade Stubbs or Brantley]