Originally written December 22, 2011 on The Outside Corner:
Among the players the A's acquired in today's Gio Gonzalez trade was Derek Norris, a power hitting catcher with an incredible ability to get on base. I got several good looks at Norris in this year's Arizona Fall League. Here are my notes and analysis of the big catcher... There is no question that Norris has two outstanding (and important) skills: power and plate discipline. However, his power can sometimes get the best of him as he seems to try and yank everything out of the yard every time to the plate (or at least every at-bat I saw in this year’s Arizona Fall League). He definitely “steps in the bucket”, meaning that when he strides he takes a step toward the third base line, opening up his front side very early. While “stepping in the bucket” can work for some hitters, it’s a mechanical issue that coaches try to avoid if at all possible. When a hitter strides toward the baseline rather than toward the pitcher, it opens their front side, which causes a number of...
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