Through 15 games, Kendrick was hitting .426 (29-for-68), leading the league in hits and tied for second in runs scored (16).
Hey everyone. It's early Tuesday morning and I'm already at the stadium. We start working out at 10, but I can't sleep past nine, so I just get up and get to the field. It takes me 20-30 minutes to get to the field.
We've got a doubleheader today. It's a long day, especially if you have play in both of them. I don't know if I'm playing in both. I wouldn't mind DHing in one and playing second in the other, but I won't complain either way.
The pitching here is a lot better than what I see during the season. Facing the different kinds of pitchers has been great. Everybody has different arm angles and different offspeed pitches. The mix of pitches I'm seeing is going to be better for me in the long run because that's what I'm going to see in the Major Leagues.
I've been swinging the bat well, but truthfully, I don't pay attention to the numbers. You just have to play every day. When you play with a bunch of good players, the pitchers have to pitch to you. I don't pay attention to the numbers because every day is a new day. I know you can't put up these numbers every year. I don't expect to hit .350 every year, so I just go out and play and if it works out that way, it works out that way. I want to get hits every day, but I know it doesn't always work out.
I'm a pretty aggressive hitter (Editor's note: Kendrick hasn't drawn a walk in the AFL this year) and I think that's been a benefit for me. Oh-fers are going to happen. How often they happen is what separates a good hitter from an average hitter. I think my aggressiveness works for me with that. I don't walk a lot. I look for pitches early in the count. I don't mind hitting with two strikes. I see it as a challenge. I just try to be aggressive at the plate and it's been working to my benefit. Sometimes it depends on how you're feeling. Sometimes I feel I want to go out and hit the first pitch. Sometimes I want to see a couple. What it comes down to for anyone is not missing your pitches to hit. When I'm struggling, I'm not seeing those pitches and I'm missing them. But when I'm going good, I don't miss the good pitches to hit.
I'm starting to get better defensively also. I feel a lot more comfortable with things that maybe I wasn't during the season, like the backhand plays, going left to right, that sort of thing. Out here, I'm a lot looser and I have a lot more opportunities to work on things. I'm getting more chances to get ground balls hit to me, especially during the games, it seems. I got a lot of work in during the season, but you shut it down sometimes when you get tired, so you don't get as much quality work in. Here, I just feel really comfortable; I'm making some plays and things are working out well for me in the field.
Off the field, Brandon Wood and I catch a movie every once in a while. I tend to hang out with the Angels guys because I know them. Brandon lives out here, so I hang out with him, Jered Weaver and David Austen, a relief pitcher with us.
Brandon and I went to see "Domino" the other night. That's the movie about Domino Harvey, the bounty hunter. Keira Knightley stars in it. It starts out slow, but it's OK. Once it got going and got deeper into the movie, it got better. I'd say it's an average movie overall.
That's it for this week. Now let's get to some of your emails.
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The number on your back (78) reflects the age of us Seniors that sit in the last row behind your dugout in the Surprise Stadium. This is just a short note to tell you guys how much we appreciate the effort that we see every day. We wish you all the luck as the season progresses and the days that follow. -- Niel P. and my young-at-heart friends.
Niel, we are always appreciative of the fans. The more the better. We don't get a whole lot of them out here, so it's great that you're coming out to watch us. Thank you for coming out and supporting us. You make us what we are. Bring as many friends as you want.
Hi Howie -- from Kentucky! We've been following the Scorpions since Fall ball started. A friend of ours is on your team: Josh Anderson. I'm sure if you've gotten to spend any time with him you'll like him. He's a really great guy. -- Jeri M.
Jeri, Josh is a real good guy. He's about five lockers away from me. I talk to him quite a bit. He leads off a lot and I hit behind him in the two hole. He's a great guy. I wouldn't say he's a real talkative guy, but we discuss baseball. We faced a lot of the same pitchers in the Texas League, and I played against him there, so we talk about that. He's a great center fielder, plays hard and gets the job done. He's been playing center and right, rotating with Carlton Jimerson and Michael Bourn. I'll be sure to tell him you say hello.
I manage Little League baseball at the 13- and 14-year-old age bracket, and it's amazing that more than three out of four of the talented kids don't believe they have to work hard to get even better. I am able to turn a few of those kids around, but it takes awhile to get through to them. I was wondering if I could show your journal to them and my son to keep them motivated at working hard on their game? -- Brian, Whittier, CA
Sure, Brian, if that's going to help kids get on track. Baseball was the one thing that kept me out of trouble and kept me from doing things my friends and even some of my family were doing. My grandmother kept my head on straight and kept me going with baseball. That kept me out of trouble. The more I worked, the better I got. When you see the results you get from working hard, it makes you want to do it even more. Why wouldn't you want to work hard to become a better player? If I didn't work hard, I wouldn't have gotten better. I would never want to sell myself short so I'm always going to put my all into it.
Howie Kendrick is a second baseman in the Angels organization and a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.