Jones Battling Through Disappointing Season

It's been a season to forget for Columbus Clippers outfielder and utility first baseman Mitch Jones. Disappointment is all that comes to mind when looking at his numbers from a season ago. With a couple of weeks of baseball left on the schedule, a hot stretch may be of necessity for Jones to regain the confidence he once possessed, which seems like a long time ago.

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Mitch Jones, 28, came into the season with high expectations and possibly a shot in the big leagues with the New York Yankees. Jones spent the entire 2005 season in Columbus hitting .268 accumulating 131 hits, 82 runs, 27 home runs and 79 runs batted in.

High expectations can lead to an abundant amount of pressure and that may have been the case for Jones this season. It's not that Jones has been abysmal, it's just the standards he sets for himself as well as what is expected from within the organization has not been on the same playing field.

The numbers have not been kind as Jones is hitting a mere .230 with 90 hits, 46 runs, 14 home runs and 65 runs batted in.

To his credit, Jones experimented with his swing earlier in the season and that is a tough thing to mess with and stay consistent at the same time. Playing out of character will result in failure nine times out of ten and the same has held true for Jones.

"I toyed with my swing earlier in the year. You hear a lot about guys making adjustments with their swings and having success doing it. I tried some things that weren't me," Jones told PinstripesPlus.com.

The utility first baseman's focus at the plate remains locked and unchanged game in and game out. There is nothing more important than a player's mentality during a baseball game. Even though the results have not been there for Jones this season, the most important aspect of the game remains in his arsenal.

"My focus hasn't changed at all," said Jones. "You come to the ballpark everyday with a plan and I have stuck with it."

Many players who have played multiple seasons in the minor leagues choose to vent their frustration and place blame towards the opposition. In this case, Jones refuses to point the finger at the opposition.

"The pitching has been the same as it was last year. I've just haven't been able to adjust," said Jones.

It would be a big mistake to place blame anywhere but himself as it would show signs of weakness and an inability to adapt to the situation. If he continues to stick with it, it may be an enjoyable next couple of weeks for Jones.

Columbus hitting coach Kevin Long admits it has been a down year for the 28-year-old and it is an obstacle that the majority of ball players must go through. If Jones plans on wearing Yankee pinstripes in the future, he can do nothing but bounce back.

"He's going to have years where things fluctuate and they go up and down, even the best in baseball do that," said Long. "He's done okay, he's almost our team leader in RBI's but I would say it's been a down year average wise and he's shown a lot less power. It's just something he's going to have to battle through."

There was an instance during the season when the Yankees were very thin at corner outfield because of injuries and Jones received great news that he was getting called up to New York. The bad news was he never actually made it to the stadium. Jones was sent back to Columbus hours after receiving the promotion and that has simply been an example of the type of season it has been for the outfielder.

All that is left for Jones at this point in the season is attempt to develop some sort of hot streak to close out the year and help Columbus maintain an outside shot at capturing the division crown.

Even consistency both offensively and defensively could serve as a catapult heading into the 2007 season. If he fails to get his game going, it will be something that lingers on Jones' mind all off-season and that would not be good for his psyche.

"My focus now is we still have a chance to win the division and make the playoffs and I want to help these guys do that. It would be nice to end the season playing consistent," said Jones.

Next season may be completely different for Jones but until then, he needs to keep working. He has the talent and potential to reach the big leagues and the next couple weeks may say a lot about his future.

_____________________________________________________

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Pinstripes Plus Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n(FREE PREVIEW OF PREMIUM CONTENT)
\r\n
\r\nMitch Jones, 28, came into the season with high expectations and possibly a shot in the big leagues with the New York Yankees. Jones spent the entire 2005 season in Columbus hitting .268 accumulating 131 hits, 82 runs, 27 home runs and 79 runs batted in.
\r\n
\r\nHigh expectations can lead to an abundant amount of pressure and that may have been the case for Jones this season. It's not that Jones has been abysmal, it's just the standards he sets for himself as well as what is expected from within the organization has not been on the same playing field.
\r\n
\r\nThe numbers have not been kind as Jones is hitting a mere .230 with 90 hits, 46 runs, 14 home runs and 65 runs batted in.
\r\n
\r\nTo his credit, Jones experimented with his swing earlier in the season and that is a tough thing to mess with and stay consistent at the same time. Playing out of character will result in failure nine times out of ten and the same has held true for Jones.
\r\n
\r\n\"I toyed with my swing earlier in the year. You hear a lot about guys making adjustments with their swings and having success doing it. I tried some things that weren't me,\" Jones told PinstripesPlus.com.
\r\n
\r\nThe utility first baseman's focus at the plate remains locked and unchanged game in and game out. There is nothing more important than a player's mentality during a baseball game. Even though the results have not been there for Jones this season, the most important aspect of the game remains in his arsenal.
\r\n
\r\n\"My focus hasn't changed at all,\" said Jones. \"You come to the ballpark everyday with a plan and I have stuck with it.\"
\r\n
\r\nMany players who have played multiple seasons in the minor leagues choose to vent their frustration and place blame towards the opposition. In this case, Jones refuses to point the finger at the opposition.
\r\n
\r\n\"The pitching has been the same as it was last year. I've just haven't been able to adjust,\" said Jones.
\r\n
\r\nIt would be a big mistake to place blame anywhere but himself as it would show signs of weakness and an inability to adapt to the situation. If he continues to stick with it, it may be an enjoyable next couple of weeks for Jones.
\r\n
\r\nColumbus hitting coach Kevin Long admits it has been a down year for the 28-year-old and it is an obstacle that the majority of ball players must go through. If Jones plans on wearing Yankee pinstripes in the future, he can do nothing but bounce back.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's going to have years where things fluctuate and they go up and down, even the best in baseball do that,\" said Long. \"He's done okay, he's almost our team leader in RBI's but I would say it's been a down year average wise and he's shown a lot less power. It's just something he's going to have to battle through.\"
\r\n
\r\nThere was an instance during the season when the Yankees were very thin at corner outfield because of injuries and Jones received great news that he was getting called up to New York. The bad news was he never actually made it to the stadium. Jones was sent back to Columbus hours after receiving the promotion and that has simply been an example of the type of season it has been for the outfielder.
\r\n
\r\nAll that is left for Jones at this point in the season is attempt to develop some sort of hot streak to close out the year and help Columbus maintain an outside shot at capturing the division crown.
\r\n
\r\nEven consistency both offensively and defensively could serve as a catapult heading into the 2007 season. If he fails to get his game going, it will be something that lingers on Jones' mind all off-season and that would not be good for his psyche.
\r\n
\r\n\"My focus now is we still have a chance to win the division and make the playoffs and I want to help these guys do that. It would be nice to end the season playing consistent,\" said Jones.
\r\n
\r\nNext season may be completely different for Jones but until then, he needs to keep working. He has the talent and potential to reach the big leagues and the next couple weeks may say a lot about his future.
\r\n
\r\n_____________________________________________________
\r\n
\r\nSubscribe to PinstripesPlus.com today! Only $79.95 brings you one full year of Total Access Pass and all premium content on PinstripesPlus.com, Scout™ Player and Roster Database (including the 'Hot News' at the top of the site), Breaking News and Information, Total Access to all Scout.com Websites, and Player Pages, detailing the progress and careers of players from high school, the minors, and the pro ranks.
\r\n
\r\nSample the PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at no risk for 7 days, then pay only $7.95 or $21.95. If you want to save 2 months off the monthly subscription price, simply choose the annual PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at $79.95.
","mobileBody":" \r\n(FREE PREVIEW OF PREMIUM CONTENT)
\r\n
\r\nMitch Jones, 28, came into the season with high expectations and possibly a shot in the big leagues with the New York Yankees. Jones spent the entire 2005 season in Columbus hitting .268 accumulating 131 hits, 82 runs, 27 home runs and 79 runs batted in.
\r\n
\r\nHigh expectations can lead to an abundant amount of pressure and that may have been the case for Jones this season. It's not that Jones has been abysmal, it's just the standards he sets for himself as well as what is expected from within the organization has not been on the same playing field.
\r\n
\r\nThe numbers have not been kind as Jones is hitting a mere .230 with 90 hits, 46 runs, 14 home runs and 65 runs batted in.
\r\n
\r\nTo his credit, Jones experimented with his swing earlier in the season and that is a tough thing to mess with and stay consistent at the same time. Playing out of character will result in failure nine times out of ten and the same has held true for Jones.
\r\n
\r\n\"I toyed with my swing earlier in the year. You hear a lot about guys making adjustments with their swings and having success doing it. I tried some things that weren't me,\" Jones told PinstripesPlus.com.
\r\n
\r\nThe utility first baseman's focus at the plate remains locked and unchanged game in and game out. There is nothing more important than a player's mentality during a baseball game. Even though the results have not been there for Jones this season, the most important aspect of the game remains in his arsenal.
\r\n
\r\n\"My focus hasn't changed at all,\" said Jones. \"You come to the ballpark everyday with a plan and I have stuck with it.\"
\r\n
\r\nMany players who have played multiple seasons in the minor leagues choose to vent their frustration and place blame towards the opposition. In this case, Jones refuses to point the finger at the opposition.
\r\n
\r\n\"The pitching has been the same as it was last year. I've just haven't been able to adjust,\" said Jones.
\r\n
\r\nIt would be a big mistake to place blame anywhere but himself as it would show signs of weakness and an inability to adapt to the situation. If he continues to stick with it, it may be an enjoyable next couple of weeks for Jones.
\r\n
\r\nColumbus hitting coach Kevin Long admits it has been a down year for the 28-year-old and it is an obstacle that the majority of ball players must go through. If Jones plans on wearing Yankee pinstripes in the future, he can do nothing but bounce back.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's going to have years where things fluctuate and they go up and down, even the best in baseball do that,\" said Long. \"He's done okay, he's almost our team leader in RBI's but I would say it's been a down year average wise and he's shown a lot less power. It's just something he's going to have to battle through.\"
\r\n
\r\nThere was an instance during the season when the Yankees were very thin at corner outfield because of injuries and Jones received great news that he was getting called up to New York. The bad news was he never actually made it to the stadium. Jones was sent back to Columbus hours after receiving the promotion and that has simply been an example of the type of season it has been for the outfielder.
\r\n
\r\nAll that is left for Jones at this point in the season is attempt to develop some sort of hot streak to close out the year and help Columbus maintain an outside shot at capturing the division crown.
\r\n
\r\nEven consistency both offensively and defensively could serve as a catapult heading into the 2007 season. If he fails to get his game going, it will be something that lingers on Jones' mind all off-season and that would not be good for his psyche.
\r\n
\r\n\"My focus now is we still have a chance to win the division and make the playoffs and I want to help these guys do that. It would be nice to end the season playing consistent,\" said Jones.
\r\n
\r\nNext season may be completely different for Jones but until then, he needs to keep working. He has the talent and potential to reach the big leagues and the next couple weeks may say a lot about his future.
\r\n
\r\n_____________________________________________________
\r\n
\r\nSubscribe to PinstripesPlus.com today! Only $79.95 brings you one full year of Total Access Pass and all premium content on PinstripesPlus.com, Scout™ Player and Roster Database (including the 'Hot News' at the top of the site), Breaking News and Information, Total Access to all Scout.com Websites, and Player Pages, detailing the progress and careers of players from high school, the minors, and the pro ranks.
\r\n
\r\nSample the PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at no risk for 7 days, then pay only $7.95 or $21.95. If you want to save 2 months off the monthly subscription price, simply choose the annual PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at $79.95.
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