07/24/2007 9:29 AM ET
Uggla: Making second-year adjustments
To a lot of people, I came out of nowhere last year to earn an All-Star bid as a Rule 5 Draft pick. I may have come as a surprise at the beginning of last year, but I played against a very tough NL East all year long and those teams made adjustments against me after the first time I played them. So I've just continued making adjustments on how they pitch to me. Making adjustments is the biggest thing for second-year players like myself.
This season, I'm seeing a lot more offspeed pitches. They're really trying to mix it up on me with fastballs in different parts of the zone, too. I see fastballs in on my hands, fastballs away. And they try to make me chase up late in the count. I need to see the ball early, swing at strikes and not swing at their pitches.
I haven't really done anything different this year as far as preparing. I'm not watching too much film. I might watch an at-bat here or there, if I'm in a rut, or if I had a good swing, a good at-bat, I'll watch that, too.
It's nice to get settled in this year. I'm not a rookie anymore. But I don't feel like I'm anywhere near being a veteran; just a little bit above a rookie, I guess.
I love the people on this team. Everybody works hard and we have talent that goes through the roof. We've just had bad luck with injuries. But that's baseball, you have to work through injuries.
Last year, we came back from adversity. We were 11-31 and had a great year. We've gotten back to .500 a couple times this year. We just need to cross that hump and move past it.
We're not just trying to get to .500, we've got our sights set on the Mets, the Braves and the Phillies. We want to get on their heels and have a chance in September to win the division. It's a tough division, but that's what it makes it fun, playing the best of the best.
Dan Uggla, 27, is batting .256 with 19 homers and 61 RBIs through his first 99 games this season. The 2006 All-Star second baseman hit .282 with 27 homers and 90 RBIs for the Marlins last year.