Moore says Royals hitters wonâ€™t get pull-happy
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Royals will not adopt a new pull-happy hitting philosophy in an effort to increase power production, Royals general manager Dayton Moore assured on Sunday.
Concerns were raised last week when former Royals hitting coach Kevin Seitzer suggested any hitting philosophy geared toward just pulling the ball could be a "recipe for disaster" for Royals hitters.
Seitzer had been responding to comments made by manager Ned Yost last fall in which Yost seemed to suggest the Royals were moving away from Seitzer’s philosophy of staying "to the middle of the field and to the off side."
Then new Royals hitting coach Jack Maloof told FOXSportsKansasCity.com that he thought he could get more power production from the Royals’ offense by encouraging hitters to use the "plus side of the field."
"Basically, we will hunt for our pitch," Maloof said. "And when we get that pitch, we will want to turn on it early. If you turn on it early, you will hit it to the plus side of the field. That is where we can get production."
But Moore said that doesn’t mean the Royals will suddenly get pull-happy.
"I don’t believe we will have a philosophy of just trying to pull the ball," Moore said. "That’s not what Ned and Jack and (assistant hitting coach) Andre David will teach. Do we want to attack pitches early in the count? Of course we do. That’s what good hitting is.
"But I don’t think there will be any major shift in philosophy. In talking with Ned and with Jack and Andre, we will still be a team that uses the middle part of the field, from power alley to power alley."
When Yost fired Seitzer in October, he stated that the Royals needed to get more home runs out of the present group of Royals hitters.
Hitting to the big part of Kauffman Stadium – 387 feet to the power alleys and 410 to center – would seem to diminish the odds of hitting home runs. Kauffman Stadium is 330 feet down each line, but Seitzer said trying to pull the ball and shooting for the shorter distances would be treacherous is the long run.
"You start committing yourself too early on pitches and a lot of bad things can happen," Setizer said. "You’ve got less time to react and you’re going to see a lot of foul balls or weak ground balls.
"Look, I agree with Ned in that I wanted home runs, too. Of course I want home runs. But this is a tough ballpark to try and hit home runs."
Moore said he respects Seitzer’s concerns and observations.
"Kevin is an excellent hitting coach who worked very hard for us the last four years," Moore said. "I hope someday we can work together again in some capacity."