|De Aza Feeling Comfortable|
De Aza already has two multi-hit games
DUNEDIN, FL - In March of 2012, Dominican prospect Andres De Aza was signed by the Blue Jays and played his first season of professional baseball with the club's Dominican Summer League (DSL) team. Last month, the 18-year-old outfielder made his professional debut in the United States with the Gulf Coast League Blue Jays, but as far as he is concerned, it's just another baseball season.
"It feels the same, which is very good," De Aza said through a translator about playing games in the United States.
"You play the same game in the Dominican. You play the game with a baseball and it's all the same, it's just in a different place. I'm just trying to play the game and so far it's felt very good."
That being said, De Aza expressed that upon his arrival in Dunedin the workload was more than he was used to in the DSL.
"It's a lot of work here," he admitted. "When I first came here up from the Dominican, it seemed like we had long days and there are a lot of things to do. At first it's a little overwhelming but over time I've gotten used to it and I really love the opportunity to be here."
When De Aza signed with the Blue Jays, scouts were excited about the power potential the 6-foot-4, 200 pound outfielder had. In the DSL last season, De Aza hit .227 with 3 home runs and 17 RBIs in 109 plate appearances.
Despite struggling to get on base in his first professional season, De Aza feels that his focus and approach at the plate are his strong points.
"I feel that I've been thinking very positively and understanding what I need to do at the plate," De Aza explained. "I'm looking for a fastball but I can adjust to the breaking ball.
"If you're always looking for the breaking ball, you're not going to be able to adjust to the fastball. I just feel like I have a really strong approach right now."
De Aza indicated that defense was an area that he wanted to improve on. He has shown that he has the ability to play all three outfield positions but has primarily been in right field since joining the Blue Jays organization due to his strong arm.
However, when asked about what he would like to improve on the most this season at Dunedin, De Aza stressed the importance of being a steady all-around performer.
"I just want to improve my consistency. It's not just my defense. It's everything. I want to be more consistent and that's what I've been focusing on so far this year."
De Aza will still be 18 years old at the end of this GCL season and hopes to grow a lot over the course of his first season in the United States.
The Dominican prospect has shown solid athleticism during his time at Dunedin and explained that much of his optimism about the upcoming season stems from his strong rapport with the team and coaching staff.
"I think it's the trust that I feel with the team. The team puts me on top and there's good communication [from the coaches] to the players so we know what to do. I feel comfortable here," De Aza concluded.