D-backs try to keep from pressing at plate

D-backs try to keep from pressing at plate

D-backs try to keep from pressing at plate
LOS ANGELES -- Each day, D-backs catcher Miguel Montero tells himself it's going to be different.

This game, this at-bat he's not going to swing too hard at the plate.

If only it were that simple.

"I keep telling myself all the time and I keep swinging hard all the time," Montero said. "It's just one of those things."

And it's one of those things that has infected the entire team. The harder they try, the worse they do, and the worse they do, the harder they try.

"When we get runners in scoring position or a situation where we can do some damage and change the game, that's when we probably put a little pressure on ourselves and try to do too much," Montero said. "Trying to hit a five-run homer. It's not going to happen."

Arizona manager Kirk Gibson likes his team attitude and the effort they're giving, but it's a case where less effort could lead to more positive results.

"I think in general our confidence isn't what it has been or what it needs to be," Gibson said. "It's not like we're rolling, let's be honest. It's a vicious game and a vicious cycle at times. A normal at-bat, you go up there you see the situation, you've got a game plan, you see the ball in the zone and you take an aggressive swing at it. What you're seeing with us, you're seeing our minds are occupied and we're not having good at-bats in those situations. What changes that? Some success, a couple hits. We've tried to simplify things from our end."

They've done that by not focusing so much on mechanics with the players so they're not thinking about that when they're up at the plate.

"It's hard for everybody, because everybody wants to contribute," Montero said. "Things haven't worked out the way we want them to so we keep pushing harder and harder. Let's try to do less and things are going to be better. It's easy to say."

But a lot harder to actually do.