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Oswaldo Cabrera starts strong for Bronx Bombers

Oswaldo Cabrera’s offseason work pays off

HOUSTON — After struggling to take great swings and fend off tough pitches in his second year, the same tale seemed to repeat itself in the early portion of spring training for Oswaldo Cabrera

However, Cabrera turned his spring around with the guidance of a new teammate. Ultimately leading to his resurgence in the first two games of the season.

Cabrera finished his sophomore year with a .211 batting average and a .299 slugging percentage. Not satisfied with the way he performed at the dish, Cabrera has taken different measures to improve. 

Besides jumping into the cage for batting practice in the winter, the 25-year-old third baseman has also taken advantage of the Yankees’ offseason moves. All-Star Juan Soto joined the club via trade from the San Diego Padres. When Cabrera found out the news, he was ecstatic to learn from the best.

Oswaldo Cabrera appreciates Juan Soto

Soto has been with New York for only a few weeks, so Oswaldo Cabrera hasn’t had the chance to engage in a personal conversation with the four-time Silver Slugger. He still found a way to discuss hitting and how to perfect his craft with the 2019 World Series champion. 

“I am trying to learn from him as much as possible,” Cabrera said. “He’s an All-Star and a person that you can tell puts in a lot of work. That is something I like about him, the intensity of the hard work he does. 

“I haven’t had a deep conversation with him, but we have talked about baseball, hitting and what are his plans at the plate and what he does. Simply, I just try to learn as much as possible from him.”


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The advice that stuck out the most to the switch-hitting slugger was Soto informing him to focus on hitting line drives to the opposite field. 

The guidance seemed to work as Cabrera’s first career four-hit game propelled the Yankees over the Astros on Friday night. Two of his hits were to the opposite field. Cabrera produced three RBIs in the 7-1 victory. 

On Opening Day Cabrera hit his first home run of the season. The native of Guarenas, Venezuela,  became the third Yankees player 25-years or younger to homer on Opening Day in the past 31 years. He joined Hall of Famer Derek Jeter and former Yankee Melky Cabrera. 

In the first two games of the young campaign, Cabrera has six hits, one home run and four runs batted in. 

The 5-foot-11 infielder’s career high in home runs in a season is six, which he established in his rookie year. When asked if he would surpass that quantity since he hit the first one early on he jokingly said he is not a fortune teller but will strive to revamp last year’s numbers.

“I feel like I am in a good position to do good and better things,” Cabrera said. “That’s why I say I am not a fortune teller but I am working toward improving.”

Spring adjustments

Spring training didn’t pan out like Cabrera anticipated. He struggled to hit the ball with authority and had difficulty getting on base. In mid-spring Cabrera found his groove and hasn’t faltered since.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone has noticed the labor his young infielder has shown to be a key contributor to New York’s offensive.  

“Tale of two springs,” Boone said about Cabrera. “He got out to a terrible start offensively. He was struggling not getting huge contact. But the last two or three weeks changed. He’s worked his butt off.”

Cabrera is in third year with the pro club. Expectations will surely be higher as the Yankees have trusted him to man the hot corner. With Soto’s help and his strong work ethic, Cabrera could be a nice contributor in the back end of the line up. 

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