He did not wait long to continue his previous season's trend as he raced to a .313 average with four home runs, 21 RBI and a .552 slugging percentage in April. Though his May average dipped to .267 for the month, he continued to rake as he smacked four more home runs and actually increased his on-base percentage. For Evans, his early success was about continuity.
"I think it was really just working on the things from the year before, and just continue to improve. I was fortunate enough to have the same hitting coach [Luis Natera] two years in a row and he did a lot to help with my swing and my approach. I just tried to build on what we did in St. Lucie the year before," he explained.
"The more I worked on things, the more comfortable I became, the more improved my strike zone discipline became. I believe the more at-bats I got, the more consistent I got, and consistency has always been the big thing for me."
Establishing oneself into a new level can often be tough for hitters making the change from the hitter-friendly Florida State League to the more pitcher-friendly Eastern League, but Evans showed no signs of lag. His transition can be attributed to his improved strike zone recognition, making his eye more acute which in turn let him feel more relaxed at the plate.
"I think any time you come into a new league at a level you've never played at, you're kind of unsure of what the competition will be like and how things will go," he said.
"But getting off to a good start got me instantly comfortable and let me know that I could play at that level. I settled down quickly and just focused on what I was working on."
However, looking forward, Evans knows the area of his game that will require the most significant growth is on the defensive side of the ball where he doesn't have much of a past or track record of consistency to rely on. His move to left field from first base could likely be the measuring stick the club ultimately uses to determine his role in 2009.
It was only a week prior to his May promotion that Evans was slotted in left field for the first time in his career, and he admits adapting to the new position is the central focus of his work this fall.
"It was funny because I remember about a week before I got called up, I was playing left field in Binghamton and I was nervous out there. But before you know, things happen so fast, and I'm playing left in the Majors," he detailed.
Later this month, Evans will head to Puerto Rico where he will participate in a winter league loaded with big leaguers and highly-touted minor leaguers. It will offer him a tremendous opportunity to continue all he achieved this season, both offensively and defensively, with an eye on what is lies ahead.
"Winter ball will be all about getting more reps against better pitching and continuing my consistency. There will always be times when I'm really going well at the plate and other times when I can't hit anything. But the more I limit the games or the at-bats where I'm not playing well, the better off I'll be," said Evans.
"I'm going to take my time in Puerto Rico very seriously. I'm going to play just as if it was the Major Leagues. I'm going to work hard and get as much work done as possible over the winter in preparation for Spring Training."