O'Neill has been focusing on improving several aspects of his hitting over the last few months after mustering just a .173 average in 157 plate appearances last season, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. "I'm definitely more focused on that (offensive) side of the ball this year," O'Neill said. "I know it was a down year for me in the average department. I was still able to do some damage but obviously not in the way I would have liked and that the staff would have liked."
O'Neill offered Gold Glove defense in 2020, but his .173/.261/.360 line and 27.4 percent strikeout rate left plenty to be desired. Consequently, the 25-year-old center fielder went right into honing his craft during the offseason and got an early jump on working with Cardinals hitting coaches this spring. Specifically, O'Neill is concentrating on refining his timing and developing a less mechanical approach at the dish after posting sub-70.0 percent contact rates in all three of his big-league stints thus far.