Frostad wants to shorten swing

Making his Double-A debut in 2007, 24-year-old first baseman Emerson Frostad fizzled after a strong first half. Lone Star Dugout recently spoke with the Canada native about his season at the plate and his future in the field.

Coming off a breakout season at the plate with High-A Bakersfield in 2006, first baseman Emerson Frostad seemed well on his way to building on that success midway through his first Double-A season. At the time of the Texas League All-Star break, Frostad was hitting .295 with seven home runs and an .844 OPS.

However, the Canada native saw his numbers take a nose dive in the second half, as he batted just .177 over his last 44 contests.

"I started off real strong and then got hurt and struggled a lot in the middle," said Frostad when asked his thoughts on the 2007 season. "I felt that I finished up pretty strong. It was kind of an up-and-down season. I think I learned a lot in Double-A with it being my first year there. Overall it wasn't the greatest season, but I know what I need to work on and I had a few positives to bring out of it."

Frostad has always been known as an excellent hitter, but he has bounced around in the field since joining the Rangers organization prior to the 2004 season. In his four years with the club, Frostad has spent entire seasons at third base, catcher, and first base. He spent most of the 2007 campaign at first base, but made a few appearances at third in the season's second half. Frostad says he is unsure of where he will be playing in the future, but he hopes to have a better idea after speaking to the Rangers.

"That's something I would like to talk to them about during the offseason when things kind of settle down a little bit," said Frostad when asked about his long-term position. "I'd like to talk to them and find out what they have in store for me. But I'm comfortable at first, third, or catching. I think that helps me out, just being able to play different positions."

Frostad, who had not played at first base since his senior year of college, came away satisfied with his performance in the field.

"I think it went pretty well from the feedback I got from the coaching staff and some of the roving coordinators that came in," said Frostad of his defense. "They were all positive and real happy with how my defense was over there. It's not too hard to be a solid first baseman, but there aren't too many real good ones out there defensively. I've definitely put in a lot of hard work over there with Dave Anderson."

With a crowded Frisco roster that included a good number of prospects, it was tough to find room for everyone in the lineup each day. Consequentially, Frostad was forced to sit on occasion, as he ended up playing in 90 games this year. While he agrees not playing everyday is frustrating, he says it helped him prepare for a possible future role.

"You always want to be playing 110 or 120 games in a minor league season," said Frostad. "When you're not getting those consistent at bats it definitely takes away from your ability to be consistent. But if I'm going to be a bench player or not play everyday down the road, I need to learn how to deal with that and fight through it. I think I learned a lot from that experience."

Frostad also missed some time after suffering a pulled hamstring in a game against San Antonio on May 20. The injury capped an otherwise brilliant series in which he blasted a game-winning three-run homer in one contest and went 4-for-4 in another. Although he was sidelined for a few weeks, Frostad does not believe the injury had any long-term effects on his performance at the plate.

"The injury didn't really linger," he said. "It kind of took me a couple of weeks to get my rhythm and timing back, but I just happened to go in a little bit of a slump right after that."

Frostad finished with 13 home runs.
Rather than blaming his hamstring, the Lewis-Clark State product attributes much of his second-half problems to a flaw in his swing.

"There were a few things in my swing," replied Frostad. "It was getting long and I wasn't sticking with the approach I had earlier in the year. During most of last year I was staying short and not trying to do too much. That is my game and I was kind of getting away from that."

Frostad says shortening his swing will be the primary goal as he heads into the offseason.

"[My swing] is going to be my main thing this offseason," added Frostad. "I'm just going to work on correcting and staying consistent with that. If I can stay consistent with that, then I think I'll be alright."

The 24-year-old also believes it is easier to correct flaws in the offseason, when he doesn't have to worry about statistics or the outcome of a game.

"It's hard to work on [my swing] during the year because you're trying to get results right away and you're worried about how the game is going to go," said Frostad. "It's nice to get into the offseason so I can focus on correcting that and getting into the cage as much as I can."

Though Frostad's offseason routine will begin at his home in Canada, he plans on getting an early start to spring training this year.

"I'm going to take some time off here for a little bit and then start going again in the cage," he said. "I'm going down to Arizona right after new years. I'm working out at an indoor facility in Tempe for January and then I'll head over to Surprise at the beginning of February."

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