Coyle Staying Within Himself

Boston's third round pick in 2010, second baseman Sean Coyle, had a very good first full season in 2011 by clubbing 14 home runs, stealing 20 bases, and leading the Greenville Drive in walks with 60. While his batting average was lower than he expected and the strikeouts higher, he says he is learning to stay within himself more which was a point of emphasis at Instructs.

"I think it was a great year getting all of the experience and just learning so much," Sean Coyle said. "I think [last] year was huge. I feel like the theme of my year was just learning, becoming very professional and learning the ins and outs of the game. I think it was something I was really able to do."

He realized upon the conclusion of the season that his days of hitting over .400 like he did in high school were over. Hitting for more power though, his strikeouts went up too but that was also a byproduct of employing more patience at the plate.

"Definitely, patience at the plate is something hitting coaches have been preaching to me pretty much my whole life," he said. "I really only like swinging at pitches that I know I can do something with.

"When the umpire goes ahead and maybe expands the zone a few inches here or a few inches there, it makes it a little tougher. I think I could have also taken a more aggressive approach a little earlier in counts, pitches that maybe I couldn't pull down the line or pull into left-center but maybe drive it to right-center or used the middle of the field more earlier in the count. That goes along with that learning curve."

An argument could be made that Coyle, armed with advanced strike zone discipline, had a better idea of the strike zone in the South Atlantic League than a lot of the lower minor league level umpires. However, mature beyond his years, he also knows that part of the higher number of strikeouts was trying to do too much.

"It's something I struggled with all year and it's something I really made strides in at Instructional League and that's not trying to do too much and staying within myself, staying within my approach, whether it's at the plate or in the field," he said.

"That's something I feel I made great strides in this year and something I accelerated this [past] Instructional League. That was big for me to do."

Learning to walk that fine line between being patient at the plate but aggressive as well is a lesson all young players need to learn and Coyle thinks he will be better prepared to do that in his second full season in 2012.

"Let the game come to me and along with that using my hands more in my swing rather than say shoulders, really loosening up my swing," he said. "That really ties in together mentally with the not trying to do too much approach. I worked on that balance between being ready to hit and being loose at the plate."


Diehard Magazine Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n\"I think it was a great year getting all of the experience and just learning so much,\" Sean Coyle said. \"I think [last] year was huge. I feel like the theme of my year was just learning, becoming very professional and learning the ins and outs of the game. I think it was something I was really able to do.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe realized upon the conclusion of the season that his days of hitting over .400 like he did in high school were over. Hitting for more power though, his strikeouts went up too but that was also a byproduct of employing more patience at the plate.
\r\n
\r\n\"Definitely, patience at the plate is something hitting coaches have been preaching to me pretty much my whole life,\" he said. \"I really only like swinging at pitches that I know I can do something with.
\r\n
\r\n\"When the umpire goes ahead and maybe expands the zone a few inches here or a few inches there, it makes it a little tougher. I think I could have also taken a more aggressive approach a little earlier in counts, pitches that maybe I couldn't pull down the line or pull into left-center but maybe drive it to right-center or used the middle of the field more earlier in the count. That goes along with that learning curve.\"
\r\n
\r\nAn argument could be made that Coyle, armed with advanced strike zone discipline, had a better idea of the strike zone in the South Atlantic League than a lot of the lower minor league level umpires. However, mature beyond his years, he also knows that part of the higher number of strikeouts was trying to do too much.
\r\n
\r\n\"It's something I struggled with all year and it's something I really made strides in at Instructional League and that's not trying to do too much and staying within myself, staying within my approach, whether it's at the plate or in the field,\" he said.
\r\n
\r\n\"That's something I feel I made great strides in this year and something I accelerated this [past] Instructional League. That was big for me to do.\"
\r\n
\r\nLearning to walk that fine line between being patient at the plate but aggressive as well is a lesson all young players need to learn and Coyle thinks he will be better prepared to do that in his second full season in 2012.
\r\n
\r\n\"Let the game come to me and along with that using my hands more in my swing rather than say shoulders, really loosening up my swing,\" he said. \"That really ties in together mentally with the not trying to do too much approach. I worked on that balance between being ready to hit and being loose at the plate.\"
\r\n
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