Wes Helms - Pinch Hitter


As JCR reports, and I hope Juan, uh, Mr. Rodriguez, doesn't mind me referring to him as he is known on the site.  But I'm off on a tangent, so let's get back to the story at hand.

As much as it might seem Wes Helms was born to pinch hit — and even he admits that's what it feels like he was put in this game to do — Helms was made a pinch hitter.

Sure, there's plenty of intrinsic talent involved. Make no mistake, Helms is six pinch hits shy of eclipsing Alex Arias for the all-timeMarlins record and owns the highest average among the game's top active pinch hitters because he learned how to do it.

Read the article and you will understand why I have always claimed that pinch hitting is a skill, that's right, a skill, that is learned in the latter stages of a players career and why young players aren't that good at it.  It has to do with acquiring discipline and not always going for broke.  

To be a Grit (definition: clench (the teeth), esp. in order to keep one's resolve when faced with an unpleasant or painful duty) pinch hitting is hard.  And few are able to do it well since it requires the ability to sit on the pine for most of  the game, come in late and only get one at bat in a pressure situation, and succeed.  It is not the job for the faint hearted or a kid just up from the minors.

 Fortunately, the Marlins have a left-handed and a right-handed hitting Grit this season.

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