MESA, Ariz. -- There have been games this spring when the Rockies hit a lot -- they've scored 20 runs in their two wins and eight in their two losses. But DJ LeMahieu still contributed in Tuesday's loss to the Cubs, putting his plate adjustments to impactful use in a game.
LeMahieu hit .297 in 81 games in 2012, and he made a mark as a guy who could hit to the opposite field. In the eighth inning Tuesday, the right-handed hitter drove a ball into left-center for a triple, and later scored to bring the Rockies within two.
"He's really an inside-out guy that's trying to learn how to pull the ball a little better," hitting coach Dante Bichette said. "He's doing it in BP, and today it showed up [in the game]."
Bichette and manager Walt Weiss agree that LeMahieu's opposite field hitting is intentional. "It's not that he can't get there, it's on purpose," Bichette said, "and he is becoming a better hitter by spending time this spring practicing to pull the inside pitches."
"I've seen it even in BP where he'll juice some balls on the inner half," Weiss said. "His money swing is that inside-out swing to the big part of the field in the off-gap. But he controls the barrel very well. We don't want to put him in a situation where we say you need to turn on the ball. That's not who he is. But I think he's getting a feel for being able to do that."