Dodgers Team News

Dodgers News: Despite Success, Mookie Betts Still Critical of His Approach

Dodgers outfielder Mookie Betts had a great weekend in Miami, hitting four home runs in the first three games of the series before getting most of the game off on Monday.

Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts was effusive in his praise of Betts, from his approach to his execution, in explaining his decision to give Mookie the day off for the series finale, according to Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register.

“Everything is on the barrel. He’s swinging it so well, absolutely,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “I think he continues to stay aggressive. Obviously when he’s like this, he stays in the strike zone and it seems like every swing he takes is center-cut. So I think the challenge for me is to recognize that but to resist the urge to run him out there every single day.”

But while Roberts is clearly impressed, Betts is a little harder on himself.

“Yeah, it’s been a good couple days or whatever,” Betts said of his hot time in Miami. “I’m just swinging at decent pitches. I know I’ve swung a little more out of the zone than I’d like to. But the pitches I’m getting to hit, I’m just hitting them. … Just stay aggressive, be ready for the mistakes. Sometimes you’re gonna swing out of the zone, but that comes with being aggressive.”

Mookie’s newfound aggressiveness, the result of a conscious midseason change in focus based on watching the way Trea Turner and Freddie Freeman do their jobs, is still a work in progress, as he acknowledges. As he gets more used to his aggressive approach, he may become a bit more refined in his ability to avoid the chases he’s unhappy with.

But honestly, as long as he keeps doing what he’s doing — “the pitches I’m getting to hit, I’m just hitting them” — we doubt anyone will complain about an occasional chase.

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Jeff Snider

Jeff was born into a Dodgers family in Southern California and is now raising a Dodgers family of his own in Utah. During his previous career as an executive at a technology company, he began writing about baseball in his spare time. After leaving corporate America in 2014, he started doing it professionally. Jeff wrote and edited for Baseball Essential for years before joining Dodgers Nation. He's also the co-host of the Locked On Dodgers podcast, a daily podcast that brings the smart fan's perspective on our Boys in Blue. Jeff has a degree in English from Brigham Young University. Favorite Player: Clayton Kershaw Favorite Moment: Kirk Gibson's homer will always have a place, but Kershaw's homer on Opening Day 2013 might be the winner.

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