Friday, April 17, 2009

Keep hitting

by Barca Blog - In the midst of his second hitting slump of the season, Aaron Westlake had a simple message for his head coach:

Keep believing in me and don’t take me out.

At the start of the week, the Commodores’ leading hitter was caught in a 2-for-23 slide at the plate which dropped his average 63 points from .426 to .363.

“I think Westy got himself down a couple of games and lost confidence,” Tim Corbin said. “Now we have to build him back up again because he’s a good hitter.”

Westlake looked back to form Tuesday and Wednesday with consecutive multi-hit games in Vanderbilt’s wins over Middle Tennessee and Morehead State. The redshirt freshman also contributed two RBI's, three runs, and a stolen base.

So how exactly do you deal with a good hitter in a slump? Corbin answered the question during Monday’s media day.

“Give him a rest sometimes and get him back going again and just keep hitting, keep hitting, and keep hitting. Slumps are usually a design of mindset going a little bit awry. I think some young hitters think, ‘Wow my swing might be screwed up,’ when really it doesn’t have anything to do with your swing. It’s about the guy you faced on that particular night.”

It should be noted that Westlake also broke out of a 2-for-18 slump in mid-March by going a torrid 9-for-14 with four RBIs and six runs at Auburn. The Commodores could use that kind of offensive output this weekend when Alabama, the conference’s top hitting club, comes to town for a three-game series.

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