After a promising month of May, Beloit Snappers' outfielder Tyler Marincov struggled mightily in June and has entered the second half looking to get back on track in his first full professional season.
Oakland's eighth-round selection in the 2013 draft enjoyed somewhat of a breakout in May by posting a slash line of .267/.389/.457 and hitting four home runs with 16 RBI. However, the former North Florida standout slumped to a .157 batting average in June and reached base just under 22 percent of the time. On the season, he is batting .226/.317/.406 with nine homers and 13 stolen bases.
"We've tweaked a few things in his setup and approach, his load, timing and rhythm," said Beloit manager Rick Magnante. "Those are all things we need to address, so he's able to recognize pitches earlier before committing to them. That way he can see them and be more on time to utilize his strength and power.
"But he's much improved over what he was a year ago in Vermont. His average is higher and we are seeing some home run production from him."
Marincov has been at his best this season when he's drawing walks and making more contact, as evidenced by his 25:19 K:BB ratio in May and 25:5 mark in June. Many of his adjustments have been made with this goal in mind.
"I have a tendency to get a little too big in my swing, so I'm trying to stay shorter but still keep my aggressiveness," Marincov said. "I made a few adjustments in instructs with [former minor league hitting coordinator Todd "Trick" Steverson].
"Trick helped changed my stance a little bit and I think it helped me stay a little shorter to the ball. He just put the bat on my shoulder, just to try to eliminate as much movement as possible with the head. We wanted to keep everything as simple as possible. I really cut down on the strikeouts a lot, but am struggling with that again now. I need to find a way to minimize that again."
Shortly after signing with the A's last summer, Marincov was shipped to the New York-Penn League, where he joined Magnante's team in Vermont. He posted a slash line of .215/.302/.313 over 214 at-bats, hitting three homers and driving in 20 runs.
The Snappers right-fielder is now entering somewhat foreign territory in the 2014 season's second half. After playing 62 games at short-season last summer, he's getting used to the rigors of playing a full year of pro ball.
"We've already pretty much played a whole short-season or summer ball season," Marincov said. "I expected to be a little more tired than I am, but I feel pretty good right now. The All-Star break really helped. It's been a lot of fun and we have a good group of guys here."
As the Snappers start seeing teams for the second and third time around, Marincov is also starting to take advantage of more thorough analysis on opposing pitchers.
"In college you don't really see that too much, since you play a team once a year and maybe a couple times in short-season," he said. "But we've seen guys now that are still in the same exact rotation we saw them the series before. The scouting reports are really detailed and that's something I really never had access to. As a player, you really have to focus your attention on that kind of stuff."