What to focus on

JJB asked=

Similar question to the one in a previous comment: Is your off season training tailored to what the Jays' staff said you NEED to work on or is it basically 'Get better and be ready on your own for Spring Training'?Also, are you still under contract with the Jays?Enjoyed watching you in N.H. this season and see some good potential there!

Good question. I wasn't sure how it would go at the end of the year, since this was my first go around in minor league ball, but we didn't have a coach - player meetings at the end of the season like I thought we might. The way I've begun to realize things run in the minors (or maybe just in the team I was placed in) is that the coaches work for their teams just as much as the players do. We're expendable, just as easily as they are expendable; so if we (the players) want to know about our status in the Jays, what they think of us, what we need to work on in the off season, we need to ask either the roving pitching coach, or the farm director. They are the ones that make all the decisions on who moves up and down. The coaches give their two cents worth on who's hot and cold, but are mainly expected to win ball games, put the players in the proper situations to succeed, and keep the players healthy.

I've kinda gone off on a tangent here explaining how some of the inner workings of minor league ball go, but I'll get back to the point for you JJB.

We did have a meetings with the strength and conditioning coaches though. The big league S&C coach was there as well as the organizations main S&C alongside the double-A S&C coach for our last home stand to have quick meetings with each player. They talked about the exit strength test (which I did fairly well on) and just mentioned what muscle group they think we need to focus on more or less in our off season workouts. Mine, scaps need to be tightened some. That was basically it. Since this was my first season they didn't know much about my weight, and what I should arrive at spring training with, so I told them, 205. I pitch better at lower weight, and since 205 is the goal, I am aiming for 198.

The Jays didn't tell me what mechanics to work on for the off season, but I have a pitching coach to work on that at home, and I know what I need to get back to, so that shouldn't be an issue.

So yeah, basically the Jays are saying get better, and be ready for spring training, which is fine. I'm not sure if things are done differently at the lower levels with the younger kids, but by double-A your a man; if you don't know what you need to do over the off season to be ready for spring training you don't have what it takes to be a big leaguer. That's just part of the weeding out process.

I am still under contract with the Jays. Since I am foreign and this was my first professional contract, I signed the typical 7 year deal that any Dominican or Venezuelan would sign at 16.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey Leon,

I like your new layout and see that you have the time to work on your blog.
Have a good time with the family and mayby until next season in the Dutch team