O'Brien Becoming Multi-Dimensional

CHARLESTON, SC- Charleston RiverDogs catcher Peter O'Brien has been turning heads recently and he isn't planning on stopping anytime soon. His coaches have only positive things to say about the players' success and improvement this season, and O'Brien is taking his confidence on offense and carrying it over to his defense.

"I'm feeling more comfortable at the plate and the little things I've been working on are paying off," O'Brien said. "As I get more into the season I know myself better.

"I'm using the whole field more consistently now, especially the other way, and I'm trying to stay like that because I'm at my best when I'm driving the ball the other way."

O'Brien has drawn a lot more walks than normal for him recently in his game too, drawing ten of them in his last ten games.

"I'm seeing the pitchers better and understanding the zone more," he said. "My new big thing is trying to better get into hitters' counts.

"You see a huge difference when you're ahead of the count than from when you're behind it, so I'm really trying to get ahead of the count as much as I can."

O'Brien's progress behind the plate has been equally successful. He is working on a lot of drills, receiving, blocking, and throwing. He explained that he is much more comfortable and confident now than when the season first began.

"It's definitely paying off," O'Brien confirmed. "I'm a lot more comfortable because of the little tweaks here and there I made with my stance, my routine of getting here everyday early, and my flexibility, which has been a lot better for me."

RiverDogs Hitting Coach P.J. Pilittere has seen tremendous improvement in O'Brien's performance, especially on being selective at the dish.

"I think the reason why he's gotten hot lately and he started to drive the ball more is because he's being more selective in his zone," Pilittere said. "Walks are a byproduct, and when guys are locked in they usually do walk more because they're swinging at good pitches, it's pretty simple.

"Sometimes we make it a little more difficult than it has to be, but the reason that he's caught fire is because he's looking for one pitch, and when he gets that pitch, he's swinging at it, and when he doesn't, he doesn't."

Pilittere believes that O'Brien is doing a great job of using the whole field by driving balls to right-center and left-center.

"As far as [a potential] promotion, it's just a consistency thing with him," Pilittere explained. "He's had a good year and has been one of our most consistent guys. I think if you try to do more because you want to move, it's just going to make you go the other direction.

"We always say to try and stay in a tunnel, or have tunnel vision, and go about your business the same way. If he can be consistent and keep playing like he's played all season, then that stuff is going to take care of itself."

Pilittere thinks that the 6-foot-4, 225 pound catcher has made tremendous strides in both areas of his game, offensively and defensively.

"Defensively he's become a lot better of a blocker and behind the plate he's a lot more engaged with his pitchers, and he's doing a nice job of managing his staff.

"As far as offensively, he's doing a really nice job of not being a one-dimensional hitter, like only a fastball hitter, and he can handle some breaking balls and changeups that are in the zone.

"I really think that's a testament to him and the work he's put forth in the offseason and all of Spring Training, and every day on a daily basis through the season to improve in that area, and he has."

O'Brien has never had a high walk rate, more often than not looking more like a slugger than a high on-base guy, but recently he is showing otherwise.

"Over the past few weeks when he's been hot he has been walking more, and him being more selective is a testament to him looking for one pitch, staying his approach, and not swinging unless he gets that pitch. It really is simple and you really wish everyone could be that simple, but when guys are going it good it is that simple.

"He's done a nice job staying with that, and is trying to open his eyes that this is where he can be and needs to be every single day," Pilittere finished.

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\r\n \r\n\r\n\"I'm feeling more comfortable at the plate and the little things I've been working on are paying off,\" O'Brien said. \"As I get more into the season I know myself better.
\r\n
\r\n\"I'm using the whole field more consistently now, especially the other way, and I'm trying to stay like that because I'm at my best when I'm driving the ball the other way.\"
\r\n
\r\nO'Brien has drawn a lot more walks than normal for him recently in his game too, drawing ten of them in his last ten games.
\r\n
\r\n\"I'm seeing the pitchers better and understanding the zone more,\" he said. \"My new big thing is trying to better get into hitters' counts.
\r\n
\r\n\"You see a huge difference when you're ahead of the count than from when you're behind it, so I'm really trying to get ahead of the count as much as I can.\"
\r\n
\r\nO'Brien's progress behind the plate has been equally successful. He is working on a lot of drills, receiving, blocking, and throwing. He explained that he is much more comfortable and confident now than when the season first began.
\r\n
\r\n\"It's definitely paying off,\" O'Brien confirmed. \"I'm a lot more comfortable because of the little tweaks here and there I made with my stance, my routine of getting here everyday early, and my flexibility, which has been a lot better for me.\"
\r\n
\r\nRiverDogs Hitting Coach P.J. Pilittere has seen tremendous improvement in O'Brien's performance, especially on being selective at the dish.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think the reason why he's gotten hot lately and he started to drive the ball more is because he's being more selective in his zone,\" Pilittere said. \"Walks are a byproduct, and when guys are locked in they usually do walk more because they're swinging at good pitches, it's pretty simple.
\r\n
\r\n\"Sometimes we make it a little more difficult than it has to be, but the reason that he's caught fire is because he's looking for one pitch, and when he gets that pitch, he's swinging at it, and when he doesn't, he doesn't.\"
\r\n
\r\nPilittere believes that O'Brien is doing a great job of using the whole field by driving balls to right-center and left-center.
\r\n
\r\n\"As far as [a potential] promotion, it's just a consistency thing with him,\" Pilittere explained. \"He's had a good year and has been one of our most consistent guys. I think if you try to do more because you want to move, it's just going to make you go the other direction.
\r\n
\r\n\"We always say to try and stay in a tunnel, or have tunnel vision, and go about your business the same way. If he can be consistent and keep playing like he's played all season, then that stuff is going to take care of itself.\"
\r\n
\r\nPilittere thinks that the 6-foot-4, 225 pound catcher has made tremendous strides in both areas of his game, offensively and defensively.
\r\n
\r\n\"Defensively he's become a lot better of a blocker and behind the plate he's a lot more engaged with his pitchers, and he's doing a nice job of managing his staff.
\r\n
\r\n\"As far as offensively, he's doing a really nice job of not being a one-dimensional hitter, like only a fastball hitter, and he can handle some breaking balls and changeups that are in the zone.
\r\n
\r\n\"I really think that's a testament to him and the work he's put forth in the offseason and all of Spring Training, and every day on a daily basis through the season to improve in that area, and he has.\"
\r\n
\r\nO'Brien has never had a high walk rate, more often than not looking more like a slugger than a high on-base guy, but recently he is showing otherwise.
\r\n
\r\n\"Over the past few weeks when he's been hot he has been walking more, and him being more selective is a testament to him looking for one pitch, staying his approach, and not swinging unless he gets that pitch. It really is simple and you really wish everyone could be that simple, but when guys are going it good it is that simple.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's done a nice job staying with that, and is trying to open his eyes that this is where he can be and needs to be every single day,\" Pilittere finished.
\r\n
\r\n

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

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\r\n

\r\n

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