Sosa Focused on His Swing

CHARLESTON, SC – At the age of 20, Eduardo Sosa has already been in the minor leagues for over three years now. This season as part of the Charleston RiverDogs team, he has been adjusting his swing and working hard to show what he can do.

A native of Bolivar, Venezuela, Sosa was signed by the Yankees as a non-drafted free agent in August 2007. Since he was signed, he has played in the Dominican Summer League, Gulf Coast League, Staten Island and now Charleston. Last season in Staten Island he had a batting average of .256, with 15 RBI and two homeruns. Sosa also led the 2010 Staten Island team in doubles, triples and stolen bases with 15.

During Spring Training, Sosa was only with the RiverDogs for a very short period of time. Hitting coach Greg Colbrunn said that he only saw Sosa for four days or so in the spring. Having minimal time to train with the Charleston team did not allow Sosa to showcase his abilities extensively. Despite the brief showing, he was working hard in the cage while he was there.

"I was trying to stay short with my swings," said Sosa. "I used to finish my swing with one hand and in Spring Training I was working on finishing with two hands so I can get shorter and have more strike zone discipline at the plate."

After a successful 2010 season, the six foot, 180 pound Sosa joined the 2011 RiverDogs hoping for a similar showing. So far this year he has continued trying to shorten his swing to give himself more power.

"I've seen the speed that he's got," reported Colbrunn. "Bunting ability is also one of the things that he brings to the table and he's starting to show that progress over the course of the season. I know it's only been about 100 at bats, but you see the bat speed, you see a better idea of the strike zone."

In Charleston so far Sosa has a batting average of .333 with 15 RBI and one home run. His current numbers have shown strong hitting, but it is only May and the numbers will change. However, he seems confident in the improvements that he made since last year. He said that the most important things for him are to only swing at good pitches, work on bunts, sacrifice bunts and get a lot of base hits.

"We are just trying to get him to calm down a little," explained Colbrunn of Sosa's plate discipline. "We are trying to develop his swing a little better and let him go."

A challenge and potential disadvantage for Sosa was that he came into this season as Charleston's "fourth" outfielder. He did not see this as a big problem and kept a positive attitude about his position. He acknowledged that although he did not get much playing time early this year that it is part of his job as he continues to work his way up in the farm system.

"I don't think he's flying under the radar," stated Colbrunn. "Although there are four outfielders, they're pretty much all going to play and they all have around the same amount of at-bats. We just happen to have four outfielders so there are days off even though all four of them are probably every day guys."

The recent suspension of centerfielder Slade Heathcott provided Sosa some additional playing time. Sosa batted first in the lineup and played centerfield during Heathcott's absence. He saw the playing time as an opportunity to show a little more of his capabilities.

"If that's the way it's perceived then great," stated Colbrunn of Sosa's opportunity for more playing time during Heathcott's suspension. "But he's been going out there and doing the same thing since day one so hopefully he'll just work on his game and have a good attitude about everything. He's trying to play hard every day."

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\r\n \r\n\r\nA native of Bolivar, Venezuela, Sosa was signed by the Yankees as a non-drafted free agent in August 2007. Since he was signed, he has played in the Dominican Summer League, Gulf Coast League, Staten Island and now Charleston. Last season in Staten Island he had a batting average of .256, with 15 RBI and two homeruns. Sosa also led the 2010 Staten Island team in doubles, triples and stolen bases with 15.
\r\n
\r\nDuring Spring Training, Sosa was only with the RiverDogs for a very short period of time. Hitting coach Greg Colbrunn said that he only saw Sosa for four days or so in the spring. Having minimal time to train with the Charleston team did not allow Sosa to showcase his abilities extensively. Despite the brief showing, he was working hard in the cage while he was there.
\r\n
\r\n\"I was trying to stay short with my swings,\" said Sosa. \"I used to finish my swing with one hand and in Spring Training I was working on finishing with two hands so I can get shorter and have more strike zone discipline at the plate.\"
\r\n
\r\nAfter a successful 2010 season, the six foot, 180 pound Sosa joined the 2011 RiverDogs hoping for a similar showing. So far this year he has continued trying to shorten his swing to give himself more power.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've seen the speed that he's got,\" reported Colbrunn. \"Bunting ability is also one of the things that he brings to the table and he's starting to show that progress over the course of the season. I know it's only been about 100 at bats, but you see the bat speed, you see a better idea of the strike zone.\"
\r\n
\r\nIn Charleston so far Sosa has a batting average of .333 with 15 RBI and one home run. His current numbers have shown strong hitting, but it is only May and the numbers will change. However, he seems confident in the improvements that he made since last year. He said that the most important things for him are to only swing at good pitches, work on bunts, sacrifice bunts and get a lot of base hits.
\r\n
\r\n\"We are just trying to get him to calm down a little,\" explained Colbrunn of Sosa's plate discipline. \"We are trying to develop his swing a little better and let him go.\"
\r\n
\r\nA challenge and potential disadvantage for Sosa was that he came into this season as Charleston's \"fourth\" outfielder. He did not see this as a big problem and kept a positive attitude about his position. He acknowledged that although he did not get much playing time early this year that it is part of his job as he continues to work his way up in the farm system.
\r\n
\r\n\"I don't think he's flying under the radar,\" stated Colbrunn. \"Although there are four outfielders, they're pretty much all going to play and they all have around the same amount of at-bats. We just happen to have four outfielders so there are days off even though all four of them are probably every day guys.\"
\r\n
\r\nThe recent suspension of centerfielder Slade Heathcott provided Sosa some additional playing time. Sosa batted first in the lineup and played centerfield during Heathcott's absence. He saw the playing time as an opportunity to show a little more of his capabilities.
\r\n
\r\n\"If that's the way it's perceived then great,\" stated Colbrunn of Sosa's opportunity for more playing time during Heathcott's suspension. \"But he's been going out there and doing the same thing since day one so hopefully he'll just work on his game and have a good attitude about everything. He's trying to play hard every day.\"
\r\n
\r\n

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