The Dominican outfielder had a first half below expectations, however, since the All-Star Game, “La Fiera” has completely changed the direction he was taking
2021 has been a year full of curious stories of all kinds in the Big leagues. From teams that have unexpectedly exceeded all expectations and others that have disappointed, to players that have been revelations during the campaign, while another group remains below expectations.
However, there are also stories of redemption and recovery that should attract powerfully attention and one of them is that of Juan Jose Soto Pacheco.
If we go back to 2020, Juan Soto faced the COVID-19, as well as an injury, situations that ended up costing him a significant number of games in the shortened season. Despite this, he was batting champion of the Big leagues and finished leading all of baseball in on-base percentage (OBP), slugging percentage (SLG), OPS and OPS +.
In 2021, things did not start as the Dominican had wanted. His first series had to be postponed due to an outbreak of COVID-19 on New York Mets that prevented them from playing with Washington Nationals. It had a good month of April, despite this and it fell suddenly in May and when we say it fell, we mean a change from heaven to earth.
In April, the Dominican hit .300 with an OPS of .870 and in May he dropped to .253 in batting average and an uncharacteristic .732 OPS. His recovery began during the last two weeks of June and since then, “The beast”Has kept improving consistently.
Soto arrived with nine home runs in July and has since hit 11, all after the HR DerbyWhile his RBIs have increased significantly, he has taken better shifts and his overall stats have been in line with what we know he can deliver. His batting average is .307 right now, he has an OBP of .449 (leading in MLB), as well as an SLG of .516, good for an OPS of .965, which would be the second best of his career so far.
– Juan José Soto Pacheco (@ JuanSoto25_) July 7, 2021
It is also important to remember that all the improvement that the player has had in 2021 has been accompanied by a change of position towards right field, where he has been a better defender, by far, than in left field.
At the age of 22, he reached his first Stars game and participated in HR Derby, giving a high-level show against Shohei ohtani and his own Soto has joked that the experience within this event was what fixed his “swing”And from there he has been able to generate power and return to being the great hitter we are used to.
Juan Soto He has rescued his season and has done it in a magnificent way, reminding everyone that when they talk about “baseball face”, Your name must be associated with that discussion.