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Angels prospect Matt Thaiss continues to impress early in camp – Orange County Register

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — After a season put in re-learning his swing, Matt Thaiss put in a winter season locking down the improvements.

So much, it looks to have labored.

Thaiss, one of the Angels’ top prospective buyers, has seven hits in his initially 10 at-bats in Cactus League enjoy. It is the observe-up to a season in which the still left-handed hitting initially baseman batted .280 with 16 homers and an .802 OPS, beginning at Double-A and ending at Triple-A.

“This was a extra effective winter season for me because of getting a calendar year performing with Jeremy Reed and Shawn Wooten,” Thaiss said of the Angels’ hitting coaches who labored with him in the minors past calendar year. “I have been performing on the drills they want me accomplishing, and I was able to have that about to the offseason for the initially time. Everything I did was extra effective.”

On Wednesday against the Colorado Rockies at Salt River Fields, Thaiss had an infield strike and a two-operate triple, giving him a crew-major 8 RBIs so much this spring. 5 of his hits are additional-foundation hits.

Thaiss, 23, was the Angels’ initially-spherical decide on in 2016. His initially two seasons in the minors he designed continual progress, but he said he had concerns with the situation of his fingers in 2017.

With the support of Reed and Wooten past calendar year, he had a breakthrough.

“We cleaned up a whole lot of things,” Thaiss said. “Now it is just improving upon, day in and day out.”

Manager Brad Ausmus, who was a distinctive assistant in the organization past calendar year and noticed Thaiss throughout the season, said he’s designed outstanding progress.

“Last spring when I was in this article he was in the middle of earning a quite extraordinary mechanical modify, not so much his swing, but his setup, the onset of his swing,” Ausmus said. “He took to it genuinely speedily, even in spring training. All season he swung the bat very properly. He’s gotten solid. He’s driving the ball farther. I just believe he’s likely to proceed to be on the trajectory in terms of both of those hitting and electrical power. I just believe he’s likely to get better and better.”

Thaiss said he received 5 to 10 pounds about the winter season in hopes of introducing some extra electrical power, which is a prerequisite to be a large-league initially baseman.

“I would appreciate to strike home operates,” Thaiss said. “For me, I know if I push the ball into gaps, the doubles will convert into home operates and the doubles will convert into triples. That is the system. If I put a good swing on it, hopefully, I have the electrical power to get it out.”

Thaiss is also even now developing as a initially baseman, getting been a catcher throughout faculty at the University of Virginia. When the Angels drafted him, they instantly moved him because they have been extra fascinated in his bat than what he furnished as a catcher.

“My initially calendar year and a fifty percent, I absolutely felt like a catcher about at initially foundation,” Thaiss said. “I had a tendency to fall and block a couple of situations, but I believe that is occur a prolonged way.”

Thaiss has occur practically all the way to the majors, getting concluded past season at Triple-A and now gotten off to a sizzling begin in large-league camp.

It will be hard for him to crack the large-league roster unless Albert Pujols or Justin Bour gets harm.

“You have to have tunnel vision,” Thaiss said. “You take it one day at a time and hope that day comes, but you have to focus on what you are accomplishing at a presented time.”

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