Since being moved up to Triple-A Oklahoma City in late June, Dodgers top infield prospect Gavin Lux has destroyed the baseball. He has a batting average of .443 in 29 games since joining OKC. He’s also chipped in 9 home runs, 29 RBI, and 39 runs scored during that time.
The Dodger’s number 1 prospect took time to chat with Dodgers Nation last week about his season, and his hot play in Triple-A.
Yeah, it’s been a good stretch. I always tell people who have never really played baseball, or wouldn’t understand it too much, that you go through stretches where the ball looks like a sunflower seed and you hate baseball for about a week, and then you go through a stretch where it looks like a beach ball and then you’re like ‘ok, this is the greatest sport ever.’
It’s been fun. I think just helping the team win and getting here and having and experiencing it, it’s been a lot of fun.
The 21 year-old Lux has a batting average of .443 and OPS of 1.352 in 29 games since joining OKC. He’s also chipped in 9 home runs, 29 RBI, and 39 runs scored during that time. It’s safe to say that he’s seeing more beach balls than sunflower seeds in OKC.
On his time in AAA, he had this to say.
I think just having a really good plan going into the game – just trying to stick to that plan and approach, and not shying away from it. Being able to get into some good hitter’s counts by taking some off-speed out of the zone early and getting into some counts where I can do some damage. And really listening to what guys say about pitchers and our scouting reports, and trying to come up with a good game plan with our hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh and just try to stick with that and not shy away from it.
In 93 games between OKC and Double-A Tulsa in 2019, Lux has a slash line of .353/427/.626 with a career high 22 home runs and 66 RBI. With the bigger power, we wondered what changed between 2018 and now.
I think getting stronger this off-season, and continuing to put on weight. But I think just getting my pitches to hit and where I can do damage on it and not missing it — you go through stretches where you might strike out more just because you’re missing your pitches that you know you can hit.
Just looking for pitches in a location where I know I can do some damage for some power, and if you get it, you can’t miss it — especially as you move up a few levels, the pitchers get better, so if you miss your pitches you might dig yourself into a hole a little bit.
And on the new allegedly juiced ball down in AAA, the young shortstop had zero complaints.
It’s a world of difference! I’m not complaining though.
Off-season Swing Changes
As we wrote about here, Lux cites work he put in with Dodgers hitting coach Robert Van Scoyoc and Brant Brown as key contributors to his power surge in 2019.
Again, in 93 games played in 2019, Gavin is sporting a robust OPS of 1.043. His elite SLG of .619 is powered by 19 doubles, 8 triples, and a career high 22 home runs, besting 2018 total of 15 in 26 fewer games.
In my 2017 year, I kind of struggled getting the ball in the air, and being able to adjust to off-speed pitches. So going into 2018, I think we really worked on my bat path, and being able to match planes with the pitch. Just giving myself the most room for error where I can barrel the ball kind of where ever it is — just give myself a better opportunity to do that.
Also incorporating my lower half more and trying to get as much power out of that as I can. It was a complete overhaul that year — pretty much everything changed.
As Gavin Lux continues to make waves through the organization and throughout media, everyone will continue to wonder when he’ll get his call up to the bigs.
Stay tuned for more from this exclusive interview with Gavin!