A Trip to Indy Allows Frazier to Recover From Early Season Struggles

Frazier: "I’m really just getting back to feeling how I have always been."

Noah Hiles
August 03, 2018 - 9:52 pm

© Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

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PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) – The 2018 season seemed to get off to a solid start for nearly everyone on the Pittsburgh Pirates offense. As the Bucs began the first few weeks of baseball as one of the top hitting teams in the game, there were few who struggled at the plate.

Adam Frazier was one of those few exceptions.

After hitting .301 in 66 games as a rookie in 2016 and .276 in 121 games with the Bucs in 2017, the 26 year-old super utility man had a tough time at the dish in the opening months of 2018, hitting .231 in April and .212 in May.

However, after spending some time down in the minor leagues with Triple-A Indianapolis, Frazier was able to figure things out and get back to his old self, hitting .412 (7-17) since being recalled by the Bucs on July 25. Now, with a clear head and some re-established confidence, he is ready to pick up where he left off in the past two years, as one of the Pirates top catalysts.

“I’m really just getting back to feeling how I have always been,” said Frazier. “My timing has been a struggle all year, but in the past few weeks it has clicked for me. I’m just trying to say simple, stay quiet at the plate and ride the wave.”

No major league ball player ever wants to be sent down to Triple-A. However, for some, time down in the minor leagues can provide a young player with the opportunity to correct a few quirks in their game. For Frazier, the time in the minors might not have been enjoyable, but it certainly proved to be beneficial.

“It could’ve been a blessing in disguise,” said Frazier. “Not getting the consistent at bats up here and then going down and getting those. It took a little longer than I would’ve liked it to, but it is what it is, and I got back to where I wanted to be, where I am now. I just have to continue to stay within myself and keep that feeling going.”

Frazier couldn’t have picked a better time to rejoin the Pirates. After their 11 game win streak in mid-July, the Bucs entered Friday only 4.0 games back of the second spot in the National League Wild Card race. With Corey Dickerson on the disabled list and Josh Harrison recovering from a hamstring injury as well, Frazier was able to receive valuable playing time in some very important games for the Pirates. While some young players might be cautious in the spotlight of a pennant race, Frazier enjoys the pressure that comes from playing in big games.

“It’s a lot easier to get up for. It is easier to be locked in and it’s a lot more fun to play in,” said Frazier. “We are living the dream for a lot of people, getting to play in the big leagues, so it sounds pretty bad to talk like that, but the more meaningful the games are the more you get up for it. You’re more locked in, the crowd is there, and you just go out and have fun.”