One of the newest ways that we have to connect to fans through the Fansided network has been the Fancred app. After some interactions with followers and commenters there, I inquired as to whether or not anyone had any questions on the Rays, and received some excellent responses. This one comes courtesy of Patrick Long, who despite being a fan of the Baltimore Orioles, had a question about Wil Myers.
"As an O’s fan, I know who Wil Myers is, but what are his strengths/weaknesses? How do you think he’ll fare as a pro?"
The first thing that jumps out about Myers is his power. The ball simply jumps off his bat when he is squaring up pitches in a way that bodes well for his ability to develop into someone that would be able to provide true protection for Evan Longoria in the Rays lineup. He also appears to have a knack for punishing mistakes in the zone, as evidenced by the shot he hit off of Max Scherzer last week on a slider that was towards the inner half of the plate.
In Myers’ first 20 games, one of his biggest strengths seems to be his ability to make adjustments to the pitcher’s game plan. That aforementioned home run against Scherzer’s slider came in the at bat after he was struck out on the same pitch. As he sees how pitchers go after him, he appears to be able to make the necessary changes to his approach to counter. This ability should make Myers even more interesting to watch going forward, to see how he reacts once pitchers change their approach to him.
The biggest weakness thus far for Myers actually plays into his strength. Myers seems to be overly aggressive at times, as he swings at far more pitches than the average major leaguer. Consequentially, opposing pitchers seem to be able to take advantage of that aggressiveness, as he seems to have problems with a good changeup. As speculated previously, perhaps Myers is cheating fastball, or is simply thrown off by a pitcher with excellent arm action on the change. However, given his potential to make adjustments, this could be something else that Myers eventually adjusts to.
As a pro, Myers does not seem likely to be a .300 hitter, but he could hit a solid .260 to .270 with 30 or so home runs over a full season. His biggest issue towards reaching that may he his propensity to strike out, which further speaks to his aggressiveness. If he is able to cut down on the strikeouts, his batting average may creep higher, but as he presently stands, Myers seems like a candidate to develop into a solid middle of the order bat with excellent power and should be able to hit at a reasonable clip.
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