San Diego Padres outfielder Hunter Renfroe is hitting .305 over the past two weeks with six home runs. What’s causing his impressive surge?
Remember when we all worried about Hunter Renfroe in July, after he hit .183 over the course of the month? The San Diego Padres outfielder had just 11 hits in 60 at-bats, striking out 35% of the time, and posted the lowest monthly on-base percentage of his 2018 campaign.
Renfroe is doing his best to put those worries to bed.
He is one of the club’s hottest hitters right now, racking up 16 hits over an 11-game hit streak that was snapped after an 0-4 performance against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday night. Renfroe, along with teammate Franmil Reyes, had the longest hitting streaks in the National League, at that time.
When Renfroe was sent down to El Paso, the club asked him to close his stance, and it worked, but only against left-handed pitching. Since being back at the big league level, he has opened his stance back up, and the results are everything. He is doing damage to both the righties and lefties, not just lefties.
In the month of August, the 26-year-old hit nine home runs, had a batting average of .302, and posted an on-base percentage of .322. It was one of the more successful offensive stretches put together by a Padres hitter this season.
Last week, at home vs Colorado, Renfroe homered off Rockies pitcher Jon Gray to dead center field in the second inning, and again in the fourth to center that scraped the wall. Both pitches were middle in, and Renfroe made him pay. You can watch both home runs here.
You see the adjustment he made. In July, he would have popped them up because he would have tried to get under the ball too much, but now he has opened his stance and drove through the ball.
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In a recent San Diego Union-Tribune interview, Renfroe was asked about his overall game and had the following to say,
"“I feel way more comfortable this year. I feel like I’ve improved in a lot of aspects of my game. I think I’ll keep moving forward, keep grinding and keep growing as a player to get to the point I want to be.”"
Hunter is definitely putting in the work. If you have been to any San Diego Padres games recently like I have, you would see that he is coming straight from the batting cages to the dugout through the tunnel, instead of coming through the clubhouse. He wants to spend as much time as possible working on his swing, and it is paying off on the field.
When asked about his plate discipline he said, “I’m really pleased with my plate discipline as far as swinging at strikes and taking balls. If the walks come, the walks come. But swing at strikes and take balls. That’s it.”
If Hunter Renfroe can maintain his adjustments, Andy Green has himself a solid, middle of the order power hitter to build a lineup around.