Head start: Correa's spring focus is baserunning

Astros' top prospect aims to regain confidence after sliding feet first led to injury

Head start: Correa's spring focus is baserunning

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- One of the things top prospect Carlos Correa wants to work on this spring is sliding into bases, which he hasn't done since he broke his right ankle sliding into third while playing for Class A Advanced Lancaster last summer. It was an injury that ended his season.

"I want to work on everything, especially with my baserunning," Correa said. "Since I got hurt, I haven't run the bases. I want to work on that and get my confidence back. You want to hit here. It's the big leagues and you're facing the best pitchers in the game, and you want to go out there and get ready for the season."

Correa, taking the field Wednesday morning for the first full-squad workout, said he will slide head first while stealing bases, but he will still go feet first if he has to break up a double play.

"I slide with my left foot in front, and my injury came because my front foot went over the bag and my back foot got stuck on the base," Correa said. "When I steal bases, I'll go head first from now on. It's not something that's going to affect my sliding."

Correa was taken by the Astros with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft. Prior to getting hurt last year, he was hitting .325 with six homers and 57 RBIs in 62 games at Lancaster, with an on-base percentage of .416 and an OPS of .926.

It's unlikely that Correa will make his Major League debut this year, but he should come to camp next season competing for a Major League job at 21 years old.

"I have no pressure, I have no timeline," Correa said. "They [the Astros] have the timeline. They have the plan. I've just got to go out there and play baseball and have fun and do my best every single day."

Correa knows he'll have to start the season at Double-A Corpus Christi, where a good showing could have him reach Triple-A Fresno at some point in 2015. For now, he is concentrating on making a good impression at camp.

"You're with the big league guys, so hopefully you're going to spend most of your career playing in Houston," Correa said. "It's really fun to be out here with these guys. I'm just 20 now, and it's really humbling and a great experience."

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.