Custodio Working Towards His Strengths

CHARLESTON, SC — Charleston infielder Claudio Custodio has been dealing with a lot early this season. He went from a starting shortstop to more of a bench player in the beginning and is now working his way back into a full-time role playing other positions. More than that, however, he is learning to hone his swing and make better use of his top-notch speed.

The New York Yankees signed the right-handed hitter as a non-drafted free agent on April 24, 2010.

In 2011, the 5-foot-10 shortstop played with the GCL Yankees where he hit .325 with 46 runs and nine doubles. Custodio documented 19 RBI and 26 stolen bases [in 28 attempts] of 39 games.

Going into the 2013 season, Custodio thought he was going to be playing for the High-A Tampa Yankees. Instead he was assigned to the RiverDogs as a backup for Rob Refsynder and Cito Culver.

Coming off Spring Training, the Dominican native was pleased about his time spent in Tampa.

"I felt really good health wise," Custodio stated. "I was really happy that throughout all of Spring Training [that] I performed well."

The 21-year old put all his effort toward working on the technical aspects of his game, both offensively and defensively.

"Defensively I worked on my throwing," continued the shortstop. "I had some injuries last year, so I tried to have my feet in the right position.

"Offensively I worked on my swing to try to drive it the other way."

Custodio is happy with his performance so far this season. But he does know that there are certain things he can work on.

"Health-wise I am happy," Custodio commented. "But I know I can do better offensively by getting more on base so I can steal some bases for my team."

In his first season with the RiverDogs, Custodio was nervous about playing with his new team. The youngster knew he needed to work on perfecting his mental game as well.

"I am trying to keep a high level of concentration throughout the entire game," Custodio admitted.

According to RiverDogs' first-year hitting coach P.J. Pilittere, Custodio is working hard to become more of a professional in his approach.

"Claudio is a versatile player who is trying to be more consistent with his swing angle," Pilittere explained. "He is trying to stay above and be more of a line drive hitter.

"He is trying keep the ball on the ground. Claudio is attempting to take the air out of the ball more, so he can use his speed to his advantage."

Pilittere is impressed with Custodio's efforts so far and knows he has the potential to be a great player down the road.

"I think he is making some really great improvements," Pilittere said. "The more he plays the better he gets and I really like his energy."

Custodio's hitting coach has high expectations for him as the season progresses.

"I expect Claudio to use his speed," Pilitterre expressed. "By putting more balls in play on the line and on the ground, he can use that speed to his advantage."

The right-hander knows the strengths of his game and knows he will only get better as the season develops.

"By playing hard and using my speed I know I can steal more bases," Custodio said. "That is the one thing I am working on right now."

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Amazin Clubhouse Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\nThe New York Yankees signed the right-handed hitter as a non-drafted free agent on April 24, 2010.
\r\n
\r\nIn 2011, the 5-foot-10 shortstop played with the GCL Yankees where he hit .325 with 46 runs and nine doubles. Custodio documented 19 RBI and 26 stolen bases [in 28 attempts] of 39 games.
\r\n
\r\nGoing into the 2013 season, Custodio thought he was going to be playing for the High-A Tampa Yankees. Instead he was assigned to the RiverDogs as a backup for Rob Refsynder and Cito Culver.
\r\n
\r\nComing off Spring Training, the Dominican native was pleased about his time spent in Tampa.
\r\n
\r\n\"I felt really good health wise,\" Custodio stated. \"I was really happy that throughout all of Spring Training [that] I performed well.\"
\r\n
\r\nThe 21-year old put all his effort toward working on the technical aspects of his game, both offensively and defensively.
\r\n
\r\n\"Defensively I worked on my throwing,\" continued the shortstop. \"I had some injuries last year, so I tried to have my feet in the right position.
\r\n
\r\n\"Offensively I worked on my swing to try to drive it the other way.\"
\r\n
\r\nCustodio is happy with his performance so far this season. But he does know that there are certain things he can work on.
\r\n
\r\n\"Health-wise I am happy,\" Custodio commented. \"But I know I can do better offensively by getting more on base so I can steal some bases for my team.\"
\r\n
\r\nIn his first season with the RiverDogs, Custodio was nervous about playing with his new team. The youngster knew he needed to work on perfecting his mental game as well.
\r\n
\r\n\"I am trying to keep a high level of concentration throughout the entire game,\" Custodio admitted.
\r\n
\r\nAccording to RiverDogs' first-year hitting coach P.J. Pilittere, Custodio is working hard to become more of a professional in his approach.
\r\n
\r\n\"Claudio is a versatile player who is trying to be more consistent with his swing angle,\" Pilittere explained. \"He is trying to stay above and be more of a line drive hitter.
\r\n
\r\n\"He is trying keep the ball on the ground. Claudio is attempting to take the air out of the ball more, so he can use his speed to his advantage.\"
\r\n
\r\nPilittere is impressed with Custodio's efforts so far and knows he has the potential to be a great player down the road.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think he is making some really great improvements,\" Pilittere said. \"The more he plays the better he gets and I really like his energy.\"
\r\n
\r\nCustodio's hitting coach has high expectations for him as the season progresses.
\r\n
\r\n\"I expect Claudio to use his speed,\" Pilitterre expressed. \"By putting more balls in play on the line and on the ground, he can use that speed to his advantage.\"
\r\n
\r\nThe right-hander knows the strengths of his game and knows he will only get better as the season develops.
\r\n
\r\n\"By playing hard and using my speed I know I can steal more bases,\" Custodio said. \"That is the one thing I am working on right now.\"
\r\n
\r\n

\r\n \r\n \r\n \r\n\r\n
\r\n

Are you a monthly or 3-month subscriber to PinstripesPlus.com? Why not get two months free AND get 4 issues of our PinstripesPlus Magazine included by becoming an annual subscriber? Upgrade today to get the most out of your subscription.

\r\n

\r\n

Become an annual subscriber today!

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