Coming into 2015, it was probably fair to say
"He told me early in spring training that he heard little whispers this winter that maybe he was not the player everyone made him out to be," Padres manager Bud Black said, per MLB.com. "I think that bothered him."
Myers has already been traded twice in his young career, with the latest deal being in December that shipped him from the
"More than anything, I am playing with a chip on my shoulder," Myers said. "Last year was the first bad year I had in my pro career. When Tampa traded me away, I felt they had given up on me.
"Almost everything I do is to be able to prove (the Rays) wrong."
Thus far, Myers is off to a good start to his Padres career. Myers, who is primarily hitting leadoff, is batting .283 with one home run, five doubles, eight RBI and 13 runs in 14 games.
"He told me early in spring training he was going to show that he should hit third, fourth or fifth," Black said. "I said, 'Wait a minute. You are not going to hit third or fourth because of the two guys [Justin Upton and Matt Kemp] we have here. Let's go in my office and sit down. Let's put a projected team together out there. You don't want to hit leadoff, so who's going to hit leadoff?' I told him, 'If you hit leadoff every day you might get the most at-bats in the NL,'"
"Everyone has their own style of how they play, and Wil, being the prototypical leadoff hitter isn't who he is," manager Bud Black said. "[We want him to] be aggressive and do what he does. Ultimately, down the road, we'll see where he sets up in the batting order. But for now, and with this group, it makes sense for him to lead off."
Hitting coach Mark Kotsay indicated the team doesn't want Myers to change his approach in his new role as a leadoff hitter.
"I think in terms of growth and development, we've seen him swing early, we've seen him take pitches. He's done a good job adjusting to the role," Kotsay said. " … But by no means do we expect him to be a prototypical leadoff hitter who is strictly an on-base guy. We don't have the expectation for him to see a lot of pitches. The competitiveness of the at-bat and quality of the plate appearance, at this point, he's done a good job of it."
Myers has hit .300/.314/.460 with one home run, seven RBI and two stolen bases in 50 at-bats.
They have not earned the nickname "The M & M Boys" yet, but
The pair keyed a victory with home runs. Middlebrooks ripped a two-run shot in the fourth to tie the game at 2-2, then Myers blasted a three-run homer in the seventh for what proved to be the game-winner.
Myers is off to a particularly strong start this season. His three-hit day, which included two singles, improved his slash line to .333/.348/.511.
"I feel good at the plate. I thought the home run was big, but one thing I've really been working on is the bunting. It's never been a part of my game, ever," Myers said, per MLB.com. "I was able to put down a bunt and get a base hit. Obviously, the home run was great, but to be able to do that in that situation, get a hit right there and give what they take me was good."
"It's been good," Myers said. "But it was definitely weird at first, especially in spring training. The first time that I played with both of them, I didn't want to yell at Justin to get over. But I'm a lot more comfortable with them now.
Myers revealed that he called off Kemp for the first time this season on Monday while attempting to catch a ball in the outfield.
"Yesterday [Monday] was the first time I really called off Matt. I was like, 'my bad.' And he was like, 'no, that's your job,'" Myers said. "That was cool for him to say that."
"We're doing a lot better now, especially because we have spray charts; we know where to play now. In Spring Training, we were on our own," Myers said. "But these two guys are good. Matt has the two Gold Gloves and Justin has made some good plays already.
"Nothing has surprised me about these guys. I think they expect that from themselves."
Both players had the day off against the Giants, though Myers did see a pinch-hitting appearance during Sunday's 6-4 loss. This move puts Will Venable and Wil Nieves into a bench role for Monday's game.
|CBSSports.com Player Ranking|
|4/21/2015 vs Colorado|
|vs Anderson (Career)||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Last 7 Games|
|Complete Game Log|
| 5 || 6 |
| 7 |
| 8 |
| 9 |
| 10 |
| 12 |
| 13 |
| 14 |
| 15 |
| 16 || 17 |
|More Batting Stats|
|Postseason Batting Stats|
|Minor League Batting Stats|
|2010||AFA-Wilmington Blue Rock||58||205||28||71||18||2||4||38||37||39||2||3||.453||.512||.346|
|2011||AA-Northwest Arkansas N||99||354||50||90||23||1||8||49||52||87||9||2||.353||.393||.254|
|2012||AA-Northwest Arkansas N||35||134||32||46||11||1||13||30||16||42||4||1||.414||.731||.343|
|2012||AAA-Omaha Storm Chasers||99||388||66||118||15||5||24||79||45||98||2||2||.378||.554||.304|
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