Padres Prospect Interview: Drew Macias

Every year, San Diego Padres prospect Drew Macias has improved. It has put him at the front of the line for outfield promotions, especially considering his plus skills as a defender. Add in better pitch selection and increasing power, Macias is getting noticed.

Figuring it out is a buzz phrase that says things clicked together and a consistent approach with hitting is found. When did you figure it out?

Drew Macias: I think it's been collective – over the past six seasons in the minor leagues, you know. Last year was probably my biggest year where I kind of started figuring out the strike zone and started figuring out what I wanted to swing at and what I wanted to do with it and using the whole field. So I think just maturing in the game is probably the biggest thing.

You drew a lot of walks last year – what was the key to improving your pitch selection?

Drew Macias: Well I knew that I can hit strikes. When I looked back, I realized that when I wasn't hitting the ball well, it was most likely because I was swinging at a ball. And I even see that in batting practice and in other work: if I swing at a ball, I don't hit it as good as I hit a strike. So I decided, ‘Hey, I'll just swing at strikes.'

It seemed like you never gave an at-bat away this past year, battling back when you were behind. How tough is that to do over the course of a season?

Drew Macias: It's hard, but at the same time, mentally it feels good to go down 0-2 and maybe draw a walk or get an 0-2 hit and just battle. Like I said, that's just another huge thing in hitting – not giving up. If you get behind 0-2, the pitcher's still got to throw a strike and when you get it, you hit it.

Did you make any mechanical changes to your stance and swing that led to your improvement?

Drew Macias: Yeah, I worked with TK (former San Antonio hitting coach and current manager Terry Kennedy) and (hitting coordinator Tony) Muser and we got me more sitting back and keeping my head still, which enabled me to hit the inside pitch better and see the plate better.

How do you as a hitter setup a pitcher to throw you the pitch you want to see?

Drew Macias: To be honest, I don't think about that. Basically, I just try to get a fastball and hit it.

You hit a career-high 11 homers last year. Do you feel like you are just touching the surface of your power potential?

Drew Macias: Yeah, you know, especially playing in a park like that. It's a thing that I think is just going to come and I'm not going to sell myself short, and I just go out there and play.

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