Angels Prospect Interview: Brandon Wood

After posting a .285 career minor league average along with 95 doubles and 68 homers over his last two years, Brandon Wood was supposed to obliterate Pacific Coast League pitching. Still just 22 years old, Wood has found it to be tougher than imagined.

He entered Monday hitting .246 on the season and has recently upped his average by 21 points, courtesy of an 11-game hitting streak. Over that span, Wood is 14-for-42, a .333 mark, with six doubles, two homers, and nine RBIs.

Tempering some of the enthusiasm is the 67 strikeouts he has amassed – occurring once every 3.34 at bats.

Things are looking up, however, for Wood. He has reserved judgment, however, till the end of the year.

What have you been able to learn going through your first full season in Triple-A?

Brandon Wood: I think it is just about understanding the pitchers. You have a lot of veterans and guys that have big league time in Triple-A so I think what I have learned so far is what kind of approach to take at the plate because you are going to be pitched to a little bit tougher than Double-A. You have some veterans out there.

You seem to have found your stroke over the last few games - did you make any changes to your game or how did you work through some of the tougher times?

Brandon Wood: I think I haven't clicked just yet. I have a couple of hits over the last few games but I am still waiting to pull together and get a few hits a game rather than just one.

I did a lot of work in the cage. I have tried to stay positive and stay through the middle and not try and do too much.

You are hitting extremely well with runners on base - how does the focus change when your teammates are on the bases versus the bases being empty?

Brandon Wood: I think the only time your focus will change is when you have a job to do. When there is a runner on second and no outs, you want to move him over. Runner and third, less than two, you try and get him in. Other than that, you try and have the same quality at bat.

You are also hitting very well in day games - is it tougher to pick up the ball in these Triple-A parks at night?

Brandon Wood: Yea, I think in day games I see the ball a little bit better. It is a little bit harder to pick up spin at night. I am not really sure other than I feel like I see the ball a little bit better during the day.

Eight stolen bases and zero times caught. Those are pretty good results and you have done well throughout your career in this category. What has been the reason for success?

Brandon Wood: I just try and run at the right times when someone tells me to go.

What do you need to do to call this season a success?

Brandon Wood: Working and trying to get better – realizing what you need to do to get to the next level. If you accomplish that – and I set goals for myself – if I accomplish that than I will be happy at the end of the year.

You have stepped up and seen some big league time this year playing for a franchise that annually contends. What is it like knowing you are part of the future of this franchise?

Brandon Wood: It is a great organization. We are in contention year in and year out. It is always exciting that you are going to work on what you need to do to get up there and when you have the chance to be up there you are going to compete for a ring.

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