Miami Marlins revealing youth at the plate

Mike Ehrmann

Miami's offense struggled throughout the month's of April and May, and after a recent team offensive slump, Manager Mike Redmond seeks patience from his hitters after a 15 win month of June.

Throughout one of the best June's in recent Marlins history, hitting with runners in scoring position and and scoring runs wasn't an issue.

Despite the June improvement, manager Mike Redmond would like to see some of Miami's younger hitters begin to mature at the plate.

"We need to do a better job of getting deeper into counts," Redmond said in an interview with MLB.com. "It seems like we will burn out a pitcher a little bit in the first three innings. Then, as we towards the middle, we'll have back to back first pitch swings and soft outs. We can't do that."

Miami's middle innings struggle was most evident in Tuesday night's contest against the Atlanta Braves. The Marlins were able to score four early runs off of Atlanta starter Julio Teheran. Despite the early success, Miami's bats cooled off and the Braves were able to put together a rally.

The Marlins' 48 percent first-pitch swing percentage from the third inning on is significantly higher than the league average of 29 percent.

Miami hitters are seeing 3.73 pitches per plate appearance, which is lower than the league average of 3.79 pitches per at-bat.

Offensively, the Marlins are frequently challenged outside of the strike zone. Because of the youth in the lineup (shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria, second baseman Derek Dietrich, and center fielder Marcell Ozuna), opposing pitchers aren't hesitant to intentionally throw several pitches out of the strike zone, acknowledging the inexperience within the Marlins' lineup.

During the team's five-game losing streak, individual struggles at the plate were made more clear. One of the most noticeable slumps was that of Giancarlo Stanton, whose offensive numbers dropped over a short span.

Although the team has recently been inconsistent, Redmond is confident that the squad can become more selective at the plate, just as they were in June.

"When we're going good, we're really grinding out at-bats and getting deep into counts," Redmond said. "When you start losing ballgames, guys start feeling like, 'Hey, I've got to pick up the slack. I've got to get the big hit.' And you start getting out of your gameplan for a little bit."

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