A .233 batting average, two home runs and 11 RBIs might not look all that great, but they look to be somewhat of an improvement from what Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons was doing just a few weeks ago.
During the early part of the season, the 23-year-old struggled to get on base, especially from the leadoff spot. He was batting below the Mendoza line — his average was a season-low .143 on April 8 — and it appeared that perhaps he just wasn’t suited to hit in the no. 1 spot in the batting order.
Simmons hasn’t gotten red-hot. He isn’t blasting homers left and right or driving in runs on a nightly basis. All in all, his start to May has been a rather pedestrian one. He’s batting just .188 in four games this month, which is actually below the .241 average he posted in April.
Yet for some reason, at least to me, he looks more relaxed at the plate.
Simmons is a very confident guy. He isn’t afraid to trash talk with Atlanta’s National League East divisional rivals, the Washington Nationals. He is one of the smoothest infielders you will ever see. He carries himself like a star.
That’s the kind of attitude that’s going to make him one.
No, Simmons isn’t lighting the world on fire. Some of his stats seem a little oxymoronic in the fact that some are better than they were a few weeks ago and some are worse. But it’s that look. That so-called “Eye of the Tiger.”
The kid’s got that look. And I have a feeling he’s about to bust out and really open some eyes very soon.
Leadoff spot, second spot, it really doesn’t matter. Simmons has a bright future.
Thus, so do the Braves.