Mesa Getting Comfortable

After being honored as Florida's State League Hitter of the Year in 2010, Melky Mesa, who got off to a rough start this season, continues to "learn the league" as an outfielder for the Trenton Thunder, making a name for himself through his power, speed, and arm strength.

During Spring Training camp, the feelings were short, sweet, and to the point.

"I felt good," Melky Mesa said. "I'm learning a lot and taking advantage."

On July 2nd of 2003, Melquisedec, aka ‘Melky', Mesa signed with the Yankees as a 16 year old prospect. His growth as a player, partnered with his early start in the league, has allowed him to gain the recognition he deserves.

"Melky, to me, is a good athlete," Trenton hitting coach Julius Matos said. "He's got a lot of tools and can really light you up with the tool package he has. He's been adjusting.

"[Mesa] has been trying to make corrections to his swing and is just trying to get in the groove. He's working to maintain his positive attitude and outlook [as well as] working really hard."

Standing tall at 6'1 and weighing just 175 pounds, this right-handed player started last season off on a rough patch in Florida, but ended it with the honor of being the hitter of the year.

"Last year he didn't start very well [either]," said Matos. "[But look], he ended up getting the league MVP."

But going into this season, Mesa seemed to stumble a bit at home plate. The question that was raised was whether or not this award was doing more negative than positive for Mesa's game.

"I'm hoping that [that award] just kinda helps him relax a little, gives him a little bit of confidence to know that he has done these things before," said Matos. "He has been in this position [before], so having that in the back of his head should be a confidence booster. He's [gone] through this, can do this, has done it before, and can do it again."

"[I feel] comfortable," Mesa agreed. "[It] makes me feel like I can do it; I can play baseball. I can be the best."

Early on, another concern arose when Mesa seemed to be fooled by breaking pitches. It seemed that this issue led to his hard run in the beginning of the Thunder season.

"I don't think that he was necessarily being fooled," said Matos. "I think that he wasn't giving himself enough time to slow the game down, to recognize and to really take the correct swing at it or lay off the ones himself. I think he worked really hard in the past year and needed a good position to be able to see the breaking balls.

"But that's something we go through; something we all face through the year. Sometimes we're good at it. Sometimes we're not that good at it. Early on in the year he wasn't very good at it. I think he is getting better with each day that goes by."

Things have most certainly changed for Mesa from the beginning of the year to now. His coaches and teammates have certainly noticed the plays he makes when he steps up to the plate and there is no doubt they are pleased with his improvements.

"His attitude and mental approach [have really improved], as well as the way he has gone about his business," said Matos. "He has been able to slow the game down. When you're a young guy, first year in the league, sometimes things start snowballing and you get caught up in the game and the game speeds up on you and you're not able to do the things you normally would do under a controlled environment.

"And so, finding that common ground where [Mesa] can control his emotion, control the game, slow the pace of the game down and let things happen, it's big. He's been our best producer, offensively and is starting to get comfortable."

Now all that he has to do is keep the hits coming and the attitude to go with it.

"He needs to continue to work that way," said Matos when asked what Mesa needs to do to improve and move up in the league. "He needs to continue to let the game come to him. He needs to just be relaxed out there and trust that he has earned his way into Double A.

"He played very well last year. He's got as much talent as anybody in the league, and can play and produce at this level. Things will come."

Mesa continues to work on everything in hopes of continuing his career through to the major leagues. When asked what sets him apart from the rest of the team, Mesa simply replied with words to live by.

"I just keep working," said Mesa. "You do what you do and everything is going to work out. I simply just play the baseball."

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\r\n \r\n\r\nDuring Spring Training camp, the feelings were short, sweet, and to the point.
\r\n
\r\n\"I felt good,\" Melky Mesa said. \"I'm learning a lot and taking advantage.\"
\r\n
\r\nOn July 2nd of 2003, Melquisedec, aka ‘Melky', Mesa signed with the Yankees as a 16 year old prospect. His growth as a player, partnered with his early start in the league, has allowed him to gain the recognition he deserves.
\r\n
\r\n\"Melky, to me, is a good athlete,\" Trenton hitting coach Julius Matos said. \"He's got a lot of tools and can really light you up with the tool package he has. He's been adjusting.
\r\n
\r\n\"[Mesa] has been trying to make corrections to his swing and is just trying to get in the groove. He's working to maintain his positive attitude and outlook [as well as] working really hard.\"
\r\n
\r\nStanding tall at 6'1 and weighing just 175 pounds, this right-handed player started last season off on a rough patch in Florida, but ended it with the honor of being the hitter of the year.
\r\n
\r\n\"Last year he didn't start very well [either],\" said Matos. \"[But look], he ended up getting the league MVP.\"
\r\n
\r\nBut going into this season, Mesa seemed to stumble a bit at home plate. The question that was raised was whether or not this award was doing more negative than positive for Mesa's game.
\r\n
\r\n\"I'm hoping that [that award] just kinda helps him relax a little, gives him a little bit of confidence to know that he has done these things before,\" said Matos. \"He has been in this position [before], so having that in the back of his head should be a confidence booster. He's [gone] through this, can do this, has done it before, and can do it again.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"[I feel] comfortable,\" Mesa agreed. \"[It] makes me feel like I can do it; I can play baseball. I can be the best.\"
\r\n
\r\nEarly on, another concern arose when Mesa seemed to be fooled by breaking pitches. It seemed that this issue led to his hard run in the beginning of the Thunder season.
\r\n
\r\n\"I don't think that he was necessarily being fooled,\" said Matos. \"I think that he wasn't giving himself enough time to slow the game down, to recognize and to really take the correct swing at it or lay off the ones himself. I think he worked really hard in the past year and needed a good position to be able to see the breaking balls.
\r\n
\r\n\"But that's something we go through; something we all face through the year. Sometimes we're good at it. Sometimes we're not that good at it. Early on in the year he wasn't very good at it. I think he is getting better with each day that goes by.\"
\r\n
\r\nThings have most certainly changed for Mesa from the beginning of the year to now. His coaches and teammates have certainly noticed the plays he makes when he steps up to the plate and there is no doubt they are pleased with his improvements.
\r\n
\r\n\"His attitude and mental approach [have really improved], as well as the way he has gone about his business,\" said Matos. \"He has been able to slow the game down. When you're a young guy, first year in the league, sometimes things start snowballing and you get caught up in the game and the game speeds up on you and you're not able to do the things you normally would do under a controlled environment.
\r\n
\r\n\"And so, finding that common ground where [Mesa] can control his emotion, control the game, slow the pace of the game down and let things happen, it's big. He's been our best producer, offensively and is starting to get comfortable.\"
\r\n
\r\nNow all that he has to do is keep the hits coming and the attitude to go with it.
\r\n
\r\n\"He needs to continue to work that way,\" said Matos when asked what Mesa needs to do to improve and move up in the league. \"He needs to continue to let the game come to him. He needs to just be relaxed out there and trust that he has earned his way into Double A.
\r\n
\r\n\"He played very well last year. He's got as much talent as anybody in the league, and can play and produce at this level. Things will come.\"
\r\n
\r\nMesa continues to work on everything in hopes of continuing his career through to the major leagues. When asked what sets him apart from the rest of the team, Mesa simply replied with words to live by.
\r\n
\r\n\"I just keep working,\" said Mesa. \"You do what you do and everything is going to work out. I simply just play the baseball.\"
\r\n
\r\n

\r\n \r\n \r\n \r\n\r\n
\r\n

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\r\n

\r\n

Become an annual subscriber today!

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