Yusniel Diaz makes BA June Prospect Team of the Month
Yusniel Diaz had a tough start to the 2017 season and made my list as the most disappointing prospect by the end of May. Since his dreadful May, Diaz has turned his season around and Baseball America named him to their June Prospect Team of the Month.
OF Yusniel Diaz • Dodgers
High Class A Rancho Cucamonga (California)
Diaz may be repeating the California League this season, but he still is just 20 years old and is in just his second season in the U.S. after leaving Cuba. He turned his season around in June, when he eliminated the pre-pitch movement in his setup, and began producing for average and power.
AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB CS AVG OBP SLG RAA 101 20 40 9 2 5 17 9 15 2 4 .396 .438 .673 11.5
Since then he has been on a tear. Most notably Diaz has quieted his stance and pre-pitch movement—which previously featured gratuitous bat waving, hip swaying and a big leg kick—and gone full-time into what used to be his two-strike stance, with significantly less moving parts.
“I’ve been working a lot in the cages trying to get my mechanics better,” Diaz said through a translator. “I feel really good now. I was making a lot of movement before. Now I feel more relaxed and more concentrated at the plate.”
Added Saylor: “Sometimes when guys have those real noisy hands they don’t go down into a good launch position and then all the sudden they’re trying to make up distance. Where he has it now it’s quieter and easier for him to get on plane early and stay through and get a bigger area of success on the pitch plane.”