Tejeda Getting Back On Track

Last year, in his first season at Double-A Portland, Oscar Tejeda batted .249 with a .297 on-base percentage, a noticeable drop from his campaign with Single-A Salem in 2010. Three things; experience at the Double-A level, hard work, and a move from second base to the outfield, seem to have put the twenty-two year old prospect back on track.

"He looks like a totally different player," said hitting coach Dave Joppie. "[Last season] he learned a lot of things about himself. He learned how to prepare and there were some things that he needed to tighten up and polish. You are seeing the results of him having that experience last year."

The transition from Single-A Salem to Double-A Portland was a tough one for Tejeda last year.

"Their first experience at this level, guys go through some periods of adjustment," coach Joppie said. "It may take a guy 400 or 500 at-bats at this level to figure some things out. That's why it is so tough here. Double-A is not easy. It is a huge jump for them, especially as a hitter."

The offseason, for Tejeda, did not offer much down time. After the season ended in Portland, Tejeda joined his winter-ball club in the Dominican Republic and played with them right into December.

"I got [some] rest in December then I started practicing in January," Tejeda said. "I worked out a lot." Come February it was time for Tejeda to head back state-side.

"[Spring training] was pretty good," he continued. "I went to the big league club. I was there for three or four weeks. I played eight games."

In his second spring with the Red Sox Tejeda received some valuable advice from both Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz.

"I learned a lot from those guys. Papi told me, ‘hey, you gotta work. If you work you are going to get what you want.'"

His hard work in the off-season and in Spring Training did not go unnoticed.

"He came in [to Spring Training] in real good shape," manager Kevin Boles said. "We have always liked his ability. He is showing some good signs out there and we are really excited about how he has started the year."

Another contributing factor to Oscar's fresh look in 2012 can, according to Boles and Joppie, be attributed to a change of scenery on the defensive side of the ball.

Late in the spring the coaching staff moved Tejeda from second-base to leftfield. While one might think that a change like that could lead to difficulties, especially so late in the spring, Tejeda seems to have made a seamless transition.

"He has really done his homework and is taking to the position well. He is doing terrific. He is putting in a real good work ethic as far as the drill work and getting with Dave Joppie [and] he is swinging the bat well. He has a quality approach and we certainly like what we see."

According to Joppie, the change defensively has helped Oscar focus on his at-bats.

"Usually guys take their at-bats to the field with them, Oscar was the other way around. He would take his defense to the plate with him. Now, I don't see that.

"Last year there were strike-zone selectivity or discipline issues that are, quite frankly, not there this year. He understands the concept of having a plan at the plate. He is trusting himself right now.

"He has a tremendous amount of confidence. He is putting himself, both physically and mentally with his preparation, in a good position to succeed."


Diehard Magazine Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n\"He looks like a totally different player,\" said hitting coach Dave Joppie. \"[Last season] he learned a lot of things about himself. He learned how to prepare and there were some things that he needed to tighten up and polish. You are seeing the results of him having that experience last year.\"
\r\n
\r\nThe transition from Single-A Salem to Double-A Portland was a tough one for Tejeda last year.
\r\n
\r\n\"Their first experience at this level, guys go through some periods of adjustment,\" coach Joppie said. \"It may take a guy 400 or 500 at-bats at this level to figure some things out. That's why it is so tough here. Double-A is not easy. It is a huge jump for them, especially as a hitter.\"
\r\n
\r\nThe offseason, for Tejeda, did not offer much down time. After the season ended in Portland, Tejeda joined his winter-ball club in the Dominican Republic and played with them right into December.
\r\n
\r\n\"I got [some] rest in December then I started practicing in January,\" Tejeda said. \"I worked out a lot.\" Come February it was time for Tejeda to head back state-side.
\r\n
\r\n\"[Spring training] was pretty good,\" he continued. \"I went to the big league club. I was there for three or four weeks. I played eight games.\"
\r\n
\r\nIn his second spring with the Red Sox Tejeda received some valuable advice from both Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz.
\r\n
\r\n\"I learned a lot from those guys. Papi told me, ‘hey, you gotta work. If you work you are going to get what you want.'\"
\r\n
\r\nHis hard work in the off-season and in Spring Training did not go unnoticed.
\r\n
\r\n\"He came in [to Spring Training] in real good shape,\" manager Kevin Boles said. \"We have always liked his ability. He is showing some good signs out there and we are really excited about how he has started the year.\"
\r\n
\r\nAnother contributing factor to Oscar's fresh look in 2012 can, according to Boles and Joppie, be attributed to a change of scenery on the defensive side of the ball.
\r\n
\r\nLate in the spring the coaching staff moved Tejeda from second-base to leftfield. While one might think that a change like that could lead to difficulties, especially so late in the spring, Tejeda seems to have made a seamless transition.
\r\n
\r\n\"He has really done his homework and is taking to the position well. He is doing terrific. He is putting in a real good work ethic as far as the drill work and getting with Dave Joppie [and] he is swinging the bat well. He has a quality approach and we certainly like what we see.\"
\r\n
\r\nAccording to Joppie, the change defensively has helped Oscar focus on his at-bats.
\r\n
\r\n\"Usually guys take their at-bats to the field with them, Oscar was the other way around. He would take his defense to the plate with him. Now, I don't see that.
\r\n
\r\n\"Last year there were strike-zone selectivity or discipline issues that are, quite frankly, not there this year. He understands the concept of having a plan at the plate. He is trusting himself right now.
\r\n
\r\n\"He has a tremendous amount of confidence. He is putting himself, both physically and mentally with his preparation, in a good position to succeed.\"
\r\n
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