Struggling at plate, Frazier gets day off

Struggling at plate, Frazier gets day off

CHICAGO -- The 8-for-62 slump that has plagued Todd Frazier over the past 16 games was reason enough for White Sox manager Robin Ventura to give the third baseman a day off Tuesday night against the Tigers.

But Frazier's bat slam at home plate after striking out with runners on first and third against Anibal Sanchez to end the 10th inning Monday pretty much reinforced the need.

"That probably was the first sign," Ventura said. "Any guy is going to do that, but it's a little bit more than that. Sometimes you want to see them work through it, but we're at a point right now where it's good to sit and watch. It becomes hard because they want to get it all back right away. Really, all you can do is control from now forward."

"It is frustration that has come in," Frazier said, "but my mindset doesn't change every day when I come in here. [I'm] focused on winning and being the best you can be, and that's basically it. My spirits aren't down."

Frazier wasn't paying lip service by saying he was in good spirits. His Tuesday demeanor was no different from his gregarious easy-going nature when things are going well, and the same was true after Monday's comeback victory from a seven-run deficit despite Frazier going 0-for-6.

Learning to separate individual failure from team success is a lesson Frazier picked up over the course of his career.

"Most definitely. It's tough to learn. It's tough to function," Frazier said. "When you go 0-for-6, it seems like the end of the world. But it took me a while to figure it out and understand you've got to accept failure in this game and it's going to happen.

"You're going to be frustrated during the game, but everybody came through. We won the game and that's that. It's tough to do. Some days are better than others and you've just got to have a positive mindset."

This slump has been a strange one for Frazier because of his strong defensive play, and the fact that he has 12 home runs and 25 RBIs over his last 34 games. The goal Tuesday was to have Frazier step away from the intense work in the batting cages he has been putting in and just get a new perspective, a plan that worked with Jose Abreu on a day off coming May 22 against the Royals.

Frazier's focus on the team winning games won't change even with this one-game break.

"I'll probably be the loudest guy in the dugout today just like I am on the field, talking the whole time," Frazier said. "Hopefully we'll get a win today. I know we've got a good team here, we're still in the race and everything and eventually once it does turn we're going to put some more numbers up."

"Just talked to him about it, and it's a good time to get Tyler [Saladino] in there and give him some playing time," Ventura said. "With Fraz, it's just a mental break."

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.