Buried at the end of the story about Mike Minor’s struggles in yesterday’s Dallas Morning News was an item that was worthy of an eyebrow raise.
Rangers hitting coach Luis Ortiz was talking to Evan Grant about the struggles of Rougned Odor and Elvis Andrus.
Ortiz said that their being veterans might actually be working against them because they are “reverting to how they used to hit” and that doesn’t work anymore “in a game that is rapidly changing.”
How they used to hit was so much better than how they are hitting now. Wouldn’t you want them to go there?
Apparently not. That is old school thinking.
He said the game is changing too fast for some players to keep up. Then, Ortiz actually said this: “Our biggest detriment to improvement is past success.”
There, in a confusing parable of a phrase, lies the reason for why the Rangers cannot hit. Their philosophy is flawed. Success is failure.
Yes, there are shifts. Yes the game has evolved. But isn’t hitting exactly what it used to be? See the ball, hit the ball. Use the entire field. Hit it where they ain’t. Shorten your swing with two strikes. Make contact. Somewhere, Ted Williams is rolling in his grave.
Past success is bad? What worked before is all wrong? The game has changed so much it requires a totally new approach to offense?
From the outside looking in, it sounds like they are filling these guys up with so much new age nonsense that it’s making their heads spin. No wonder this team can’t hit. They’ve foolishly been trying to repeat the proven process of getting hits.
Maybe Ortiz’s approach would have validity if it was just Andrus and Odor struggling. But it’s the entire team. So, maybe it’s not the student, maybe it’s the teacher.
Instead of past success being a bad thing, maybe it’s a good thing. Maybe it makes sense to go back to what worked in the past instead of trying to invent a new success.
Maybe what the Rangers hitting coaches are trying to do is the problem.
Because one thing is for absolute certain. It’s not working.
Kyle Gibson (1-2, 3.74) vs. Dinelson Lamet (2-1, 1.59)