Fowler Staying Focused

One of the hardest lessons learned by any new player, especially one drafted out of high school, is staying focused and grasping the mental aspects of the professional level. Dustin Fowler, this year's 18th round pick, says that is an area of his game that he has made the most progress in thus far and it has allowed him to focus on other areas of his game.

"It went good," Fowler said of his debut season. "I had my ups and downs but for the most part at the end I was satisfied and excited that I completed my first season."

He finished his debut season hitting a respectable .241 with 12 extra-base hits in his first 30 games. Beyond the numbers though he believes it was the mental leap he made that makes him most proud.

"Probably the mental aspect, being able to fail so many times and being able to bounce back and get over it," he said of the hardest adjustment. "Being able to get out there everyday and practice in the heat and then play a game against the best of the best out there, it was a grind.

"Being able to keep going out there and keep grinding, that was the toughest adjustment."

Just like it is for many high school hitters making the leap to the professional level, he had to get used to facing guys who throw 90-plus mph with better secondary offerings than he was accustomed to, but that step up in competition was not as daunting.

"It was obviously tough to [face those better pitchers] but I know I have the ability and the bat, and I was able to adjust to that," he opined. "I just needed to stay focused and not get too down on myself when things didn't go my way. I felt I handled myself as good as I could."

Now that he has experienced first-hand the importance of staying even-keeled and mentally strong, he says he wants to get to work on other areas of his game.

"Just being more patient at the plate, trying to pick that one pitch that I can drive out of the park and trying to hit more balls to the opposite field," he said.

"I'm great when it comes to pull-hitting but I just need to learn how to drive the ball to the opposite field more. I just need to stay and my back side more, use my legs and don't use just my upper body, and let the ball get deep."

Confident in the present state of his defensive game in the outfield, Fowler, who compares favorably to a less intense version of Jake Cave, a comparison Fowler himself can see, is focusing more on the development of his offensive game.

"I've always been a gap to gap hitter and I'm just focusing on keep driving the ball in all the gaps," he added. "I don't think about hitting home runs as much, just hitting the ball as solid and as hard as I can."

See more pitches and drive the ball to the opposite field more are a couple of to-do items in preparation for his first full season next year and he's keeping his focus on continuing to improve.

"I see that I need to improve and fine-tune in all areas of my game and get stronger, but for the most part I believe I'll be able to do good and hang with all of the better athletes as I move up.

"I've obviously seen some improvement that I've done but the bigger thing is just getting used to playing everyday. It's a grind going out there and doing the same thing everyday so I just need to stay focused," he concluded.

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\r\n \r\n\r\n\"It went good,\" Fowler said of his debut season. \"I had my ups and downs but for the most part at the end I was satisfied and excited that I completed my first season.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe finished his debut season hitting a respectable .241 with 12 extra-base hits in his first 30 games. Beyond the numbers though he believes it was the mental leap he made that makes him most proud.
\r\n
\r\n\"Probably the mental aspect, being able to fail so many times and being able to bounce back and get over it,\" he said of the hardest adjustment. \"Being able to get out there everyday and practice in the heat and then play a game against the best of the best out there, it was a grind.
\r\n
\r\n\"Being able to keep going out there and keep grinding, that was the toughest adjustment.\"
\r\n
\r\nJust like it is for many high school hitters making the leap to the professional level, he had to get used to facing guys who throw 90-plus mph with better secondary offerings than he was accustomed to, but that step up in competition was not as daunting.
\r\n
\r\n\"It was obviously tough to [face those better pitchers] but I know I have the ability and the bat, and I was able to adjust to that,\" he opined. \"I just needed to stay focused and not get too down on myself when things didn't go my way. I felt I handled myself as good as I could.\"
\r\n
\r\nNow that he has experienced first-hand the importance of staying even-keeled and mentally strong, he says he wants to get to work on other areas of his game.
\r\n
\r\n\"Just being more patient at the plate, trying to pick that one pitch that I can drive out of the park and trying to hit more balls to the opposite field,\" he said.
\r\n
\r\n\"I'm great when it comes to pull-hitting but I just need to learn how to drive the ball to the opposite field more. I just need to stay and my back side more, use my legs and don't use just my upper body, and let the ball get deep.\"
\r\n
\r\nConfident in the present state of his defensive game in the outfield, Fowler, who compares favorably to a less intense version of Jake Cave, a comparison Fowler himself can see, is focusing more on the development of his offensive game.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've always been a gap to gap hitter and I'm just focusing on keep driving the ball in all the gaps,\" he added. \"I don't think about hitting home runs as much, just hitting the ball as solid and as hard as I can.\"
\r\n
\r\nSee more pitches and drive the ball to the opposite field more are a couple of to-do items in preparation for his first full season next year and he's keeping his focus on continuing to improve.
\r\n
\r\n\"I see that I need to improve and fine-tune in all areas of my game and get stronger, but for the most part I believe I'll be able to do good and hang with all of the better athletes as I move up.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've obviously seen some improvement that I've done but the bigger thing is just getting used to playing everyday. It's a grind going out there and doing the same thing everyday so I just need to stay focused,\" he concluded.
\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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