Kendall brings scrapiness to Milwaukee

20 02 2008

Kendall came away from yesterday’s practice understanding that the Brewers did not need him to hit 20 home runs.  The lineup already has plenty of power.  The young Brewers very much impressed Kendall with their power strokes during batting practice.

Jim Skaalen, the Brewers’ hitting coach, sees Kendall as exactly what the lineup needed.  The offense had lacked a scrappy hitter, one that fought off four or five pitches after getting down in the count.  The Brewers needed someone that could get on base, someone that could work the count a little bit and draw some walks.  Skaalen said that he loved what he saw from Jason in the first batting practice.

The new Brewers backstop underwent Lasik eye surgery during the off-season.  Jason had complained during last season that he did not see the ball as well as he would have liked.  The surgery seems to have corrected that problem, and the offensive production should climb a little bit.  I had heard reports throughout last season that Jason’s eyesight was decreasing.  It is very good news to hear that this is no longer a problem.

Ned Yost also noticed a mechanical flaw in Kendall’s throws to second base after analyzing some film.  Yost, formerly a catcher, saw that Kendall laid back a little too much during his throws.  One of the essential aspects of throwing to second base is gaining momentum to throw the ball.  Yost said that this should not be difficult to fix.

Kendall is a scrappy veteran who will build a nice report with the pitchers and provide the Brewers offense with some hard work at the plate.  He will not be the savior to the team this year, but as I have said before, experts are underestimating the importance of the Jason Kendall signing.  If nothing else happens, the starting pitching should improve drastically.

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