With spring training kicking off this Saturday, Dodgers fans will have the chance to take a look at one new player and his new swing: Jason Heyward.
Heyward was traded to the Dodgers from the Chicago Cubs in the off-season and since his arrival in LA, he has been working on revamping his swing with the hitting coaches. So far, it looks like the hard work is paying off, as Heyward recently hit a line-drive homer off of teammate Tony Gonsolin.
Here’s the massive homer shown from two angles:
The 33-year-old is already showing strides and is looking to make improvements from years prior. For one, over the last seven seasons, Heyward has had just one above-average campaign by wRC+, which was impacted by the shortened 202 seasons. Above average is anything above 100. Last season alone Heyward also hit .204 with one homer in 137 at-bats and had a strikeout percentage of 21.2%.
That clearly isn’t going to cut it for the Dodgers and their standards. After getting in the lab with the hitting coach Robert Van Scoyoc, early signs suggest that Heyward’s swing changes are already paying dividends.
“I was expecting to make changes and expecting to start from scratch, which was nice,” Heyward said. “That being said, it’s still about me as far as showing up everyday, especially stepping in the box being the best version of myself.”
The home run Heyward displayed at camp showed just how much power he holds. Not only did the Camelback Ranch crowd and fellow teammates cheer in excitement, but manager Dave Roberts also appeared to be impressed.
Juan Toribio of MLB.com compared the difference in Heyward’s stance with side-by-side photos:
Heyward’s new stance and revamped swing can be a major asset to the team as they head into the regular season. The lefty will steadily be working to earn a spot on the opening-day roster.
Because it is still early in the spring training season, there is no telling how Heyward’s new swing will hold up over the course of a full 162-game schedule. But for now, Dodgers fans can be excited about the potential that Heyward brings to the team.
Looking for more Dodgers News? Subscribe to our YouTube Channel! Subscribe and hit that notification bell to stay up to date on all the latest news, updates, rumors, interviews, live streams, and more!