Red Sox's Rafael Devers: Slowly accepting advice

Devers has slowly accepted the direction of teammates and coaches about being a more patient hitter, Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reports.

When Devers made his MLB debut before his 21st birthday, he was a raw, free swinger that got by on natural talent. The next step was for the free-spirited Devers to avoid swinging at bad pitches. The now 22-year-old third baseman has listened and adopted the coaching, and it's important that he doesn't fall back into old habits. "There's a two-way conversation now," hitting coach Tim Hyers said. "It's not just us feeding information to him. So now, as a hitting coach, I'm seeing the progression that we're onto something. That's a really good sign when he came in the other day and said, 'I want to work on this. I expanded in and want to make sure my sights are in this spot.' So he just worked on that for a while. For a young guy to use his time wisely like that. It was really neat to see." Manager Alex Cora has challenged Devers this spring, slotting him third in the batting order. If he's to become the primary three hitter, he knows he needs to control the strike zone and avoid getting himself out. "It would be an honor to hit third, but I have to keep working and show that I deserve to be there," he said. Judging from his spring numbers, Devers appears to have fully accepted what he's being told. He's batting .478 (11-for-23) with a 1.261 OPS.

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