Koback Changing Things Up

Greenville, SC - The first-year centerfielder for the Drive, Cody Koback, is both a strong bat and a reliable outfielder. However, he hasn't had the type of success he wants just yet and a lot of of that has to do with changing his approach at the plate.

"I'm really proud about the way he's handled himself. We've asked him to completely change his approach," Greenville Drive's hitting coach Darren Fenster said.

"He started the year as kind of a guy who didn't hit with much of a plan. He got up there and anything in the zip code of the strike zone he'd be swinging at, a lot of poor pitch selection not swinging at good pitches, pitches that he couldn't drive.

"It got to the point where we were forcing him to take more pitches just so he could become more selective. At first I think it was a struggle for him because it's not exactly the type of hitter he was coming in; slowly but surely he bought in."

"he started slow but he's been picking it up," Drive manager Carlos Febles said. "He's swinging the bat much better [and] has a better approach at the plate and he's driving the ball real nice.

"I think the main thing for him is swinging at strikes and being more patient at the plate. His offense is coming along. He's been having much better at-bats lately."

"[My offense] is getting better I' d say," Koback added. "It was struggling in the begging but it's getting better with pitch selection and working at-bats."

On the season thus far, Koback has 14 RBI's, two home runs and a .235 batting average.

"His last week and a half going into the start of the Lakewood series I think he's taken a huge step forward and has been as consistent as any guy we've had," Fenster said.

"He's really come a long way in a short period of time in just a week in terms of what we've asked him to do, and because of the fact that he's had success with a more patient approach and a more selective approach he's bought in.

"He started in the leadoff spot but we dropped him down to the six or seven hole to take some of the pressure off of him. He's learned this approach from a little low in the order.

"The other day he hit in the lead offspot and didn't change anything and kept with his same good approach and same swing and was real selective, and I'm confident that he's turned the corner in that respect."

"Pitch selection and overall have quality at-bats all the way through the season is the main thing [I'm working on]," Koback said. "You can't control if you hit a line drive at somebody or hit a ball to somebody but if you go up with the same approach and have a quality at bat every time you'll get results later on."

Febles explained that initially he didn't know if Koback would move up to Greenville prior to Spring training but he put a lot of hard work in and opened a lot of eyes to his talent, potential and defense.

"I think he only played, not even five games last year, so this is his first professional year and first full season and he's been good, handling it well," Febles said. "Normally you spend your year down in extended but he got the opportunity to come here. I'm really pleased with his job."

"He's my centerfielder. He's a great outfielder. He covers a lot of ground, has a great arm and a lot of speed."

"My defense has been okay so far," Koback commented. "I do a lot of work before the game, outfield stuff-footwork getting behind fly balls, throws stuff like that."

Koback said he had a great Spring Training and enjoyed meeting all the players from each level and is looking forward to the experience he gained from Spring Training, the offseason and the season so far to carry throughout the long season.

"If he continues to work the way he has, for him to show the improvement that he has in a ten day stand it's outstanding. The kid obviously has some talent but that's half the battle at this level.

"He's gonna go through some struggles just like everybody else but it's going to be during those times when he's gonna be tested to stick to his plan, and if he's able to do that then he's gonna have a good year," Fenster concluded.


Diehard Magazine Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n\"I'm really proud about the way he's handled himself. We've asked him to completely change his approach,\" Greenville Drive's hitting coach Darren Fenster said.
\r\n
\r\n\"He started the year as kind of a guy who didn't hit with much of a plan. He got up there and anything in the zip code of the strike zone he'd be swinging at, a lot of poor pitch selection not swinging at good pitches, pitches that he couldn't drive.
\r\n
\r\n\"It got to the point where we were forcing him to take more pitches just so he could become more selective. At first I think it was a struggle for him because it's not exactly the type of hitter he was coming in; slowly but surely he bought in.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"he started slow but he's been picking it up,\" Drive manager Carlos Febles said. \"He's swinging the bat much better [and] has a better approach at the plate and he's driving the ball real nice.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think the main thing for him is swinging at strikes and being more patient at the plate. His offense is coming along. He's been having much better at-bats lately.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"[My offense] is getting better I' d say,\" Koback added. \"It was struggling in the begging but it's getting better with pitch selection and working at-bats.\"
\r\n
\r\nOn the season thus far, Koback has 14 RBI's, two home runs and a .235 batting average.
\r\n
\r\n\"His last week and a half going into the start of the Lakewood series I think he's taken a huge step forward and has been as consistent as any guy we've had,\" Fenster said.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's really come a long way in a short period of time in just a week in terms of what we've asked him to do, and because of the fact that he's had success with a more patient approach and a more selective approach he's bought in.
\r\n
\r\n\"He started in the leadoff spot but we dropped him down to the six or seven hole to take some of the pressure off of him. He's learned this approach from a little low in the order.
\r\n
\r\n\"The other day he hit in the lead offspot and didn't change anything and kept with his same good approach and same swing and was real selective, and I'm confident that he's turned the corner in that respect.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"Pitch selection and overall have quality at-bats all the way through the season is the main thing [I'm working on],\" Koback said. \"You can't control if you hit a line drive at somebody or hit a ball to somebody but if you go up with the same approach and have a quality at bat every time you'll get results later on.\"
\r\n
\r\nFebles explained that initially he didn't know if Koback would move up to Greenville prior to Spring training but he put a lot of hard work in and opened a lot of eyes to his talent, potential and defense.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think he only played, not even five games last year, so this is his first professional year and first full season and he's been good, handling it well,\" Febles said. \"Normally you spend your year down in extended but he got the opportunity to come here. I'm really pleased with his job.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"He's my centerfielder. He's a great outfielder. He covers a lot of ground, has a great arm and a lot of speed.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"My defense has been okay so far,\" Koback commented. \"I do a lot of work before the game, outfield stuff-footwork getting behind fly balls, throws stuff like that.\"
\r\n
\r\nKoback said he had a great Spring Training and enjoyed meeting all the players from each level and is looking forward to the experience he gained from Spring Training, the offseason and the season so far to carry throughout the long season.
\r\n
\r\n\"If he continues to work the way he has, for him to show the improvement that he has in a ten day stand it's outstanding. The kid obviously has some talent but that's half the battle at this level.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's gonna go through some struggles just like everybody else but it's going to be during those times when he's gonna be tested to stick to his plan, and if he's able to do that then he's gonna have a good year,\" Fenster concluded.
\r\n
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