Chip Scoggins: Hitting coach Vavra takes a positive stance

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 12, 2012 - 2:02 AM

Hitting coach Joe Vavra hasn't stopped searching for ways to get his slumping Twins batters right.

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BallFourMay. 12, 1212:49 AM

Important to note that on any random team as many as half the hitters are getting their advice from someone other than the batting coach, and that two such coaches "at the major league level" is a likely direction. It's already been done.

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zhangguotaoMay. 12, 12 1:16 AM

I'm sure glad he's positive. For me, watching this team fail to get meaningful hits game after game over at least the last two years is excruciating. Clutch hitting is apparently not part of the "Twins Way"--do they get fined for hitting the ball with a runner at 3rd? Seeing the development of our seasoned hitters like Valencia, Parmalee, Casilla and all the other guys who are surely turning into into solid single A hitters is making me positive. I don't know if Vavra is the problem or just the scape goat but doing the same thing year after year hoping for different results isn't working.

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loop80May. 12, 12 2:06 AM

"I believe in my abilities," Vavra said. "But you've got to point the finger at somebody. Go ahead and point it at me. That's fine, I'll wear it. I'll take some of the blame off the players." --- Is there anyone in the world who actually considers these statements remotely close to taking responsibility and criticism of the situation? When Vavra fails out as a coach he has a bright future in politics!

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mgalaforetMay. 12, 12 3:10 AM

He's got a local, who is 6'6", 235 pounds that is a singles hitter. Only in MN is that acceptale, especially since Mauer is one of your own. $22MM per year for singles, wow.

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podman64May. 12, 12 4:52 AM

Twins draft weak, small players like Rivera and play to contact hitting. Kelly liked this style and so does Gardy. Draft power hitters, and power pitchers, instead of finesse pitchers. Then get coaches that coach that style. Bruno could teach Mauer how to hit for power.

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manoliveMay. 12, 12 6:11 AM

The Twins were one of the worst hitting teams in baseball last year. Rather than address the reasons, they maintain the status quo, and the results speak for themselves. Either vavra is a terrible hitting coach, or the Twins are terrible at evaluating talent. Most likely it's a combination of both. Why would the Twinks employ someone as a hitting coach who was never good enough at hitting to even get to the big leagues? If you're one of the worst at your job year after year, how do you manage to keep your job? Simple, It's the "Twins way".

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USAFCOP25May. 12, 12 6:14 AM

Blue Jays 4 HR's and the Twins 0. Hmmm, is this going to be a theme for the rest of my days as a twins fan? The opposing team hits more than the home team...EVERY, STINKIN', GAME!!!! And then the hitting coach says, ill take some of the blame off the players. PROMOTE BRUNO NOW!!!!! hes got the AAA players hitting the cover off the ball. Plouffe needs to be sent away, not down, AWAY. And, once again, who else thinks it was a good idea to let cuddyer go. Anyone see what he is doing with the rocks? Yeah, thought so.

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celticvikingMay. 12, 12 6:20 AM

The Twins would be better off if he were positive someplace else, like at his old job of ordering balls and bats. Time for Bruno to be the hitting coach. Players have said he actually helps. When was the last time a player said they got better with Vavra's "help"?

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meegwichMay. 12, 12 6:40 AM

This is, I believe, the third installment from Strib writers over the last week or so trying to endorse either Gardo or his inept coaches. It's actually pretty simple...the Twins don't have the horses...and the "trainers" are some of the worst in the business. Until the upper management of the Twins comes out with the admittance that Gardo and his buddies are not part of the solution this team is destined to repeat it's recent history...and we all know what that looks like.

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Willy53May. 12, 12 6:51 AM

Right on, Folks. The truth is that Vavra is changing nothing. His critical approach is to avoid falling behind in the count by not swinging at pitches out of the strike zone. The result: his players leave the bat on their shoulders too much and their swings are tenuous at best. This guy's specialty: ruining even superstars. How lucky Ortiz got out of the Twins organization when he did. Hardy got it: the Twins were incompatible with his approach. Like I say, give me a bunch of hitters that take their cuts and swing freely. Mauer is the classicl example of Vavra's approach. The two are perfect for one another. Mauer watches the first pitch for a strike and ends up hitting behind in the count much of the time. Luckily he's a good hitter and can salvage some at bats to keep his average above .250 but the cost is his power. BLOW THE TWINS UP. That means Mauer and Morneau, casualties of too many years of Vavra, must go and the folks upstairs (who think this contact business is what sells tickets and wins games) must be vanquished as well.

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