Emerging as an offensive force, as well as one of the top hitting prospects in the Florida State League, Logan Morrison is living large in 2008. Morrison has been making a mockery of FSL pitching, hitting well over .330 this season for Jupiter, a year after mashing 24 homeruns at Greensboro. I got a chance to chat with the Kansas City, MO native about what factors helped him get to where he is today, as well as what he is looking forward to learning in the future.
Brett Sullivan: When you were growing up, you spent time working with former MLB all-star Kevin Seitzer. How crucial was he to your development? What things did you two focus on specifically?
Logan Morrison: Kevin was the key to my development. He taught me things about my swing, the mental part of the game, and about my life. I owe everything I have accomplished and will accomplish to him. We worked on hitting the ball the other way, hitting through the ball, how to stick to my strengths, and learn my weaknesses.
BS: How difficult was the decision to forego college and head straight to the minor leagues when you were drafted?
LM: It was tough, but at the same time, I knew that the Marlins offered me enough money to give me all the opportunity that I'd need to succeed. I also thought about the fact that I could start earlier on my quest to the big leagues instead of waiting three more years. I wouldn’t change my decision one bit if I had to do it all over again.
BS: Last season you played in a hitter friendly environment at Greensboro. This season, in a more hitter suppressed league, you’ve managed to increase your production in many areas. What can you attribute this progression to?
LM: Last year I would try and do too much a lot of times during my at-bats. This would put me in a hole which most of the time I couldn’t get out of. This year I told myself going in that I wasn’t going and try to hit home runs. This has helped me be more patient. That has been the key for me this year, getting a pitch in the zone and driving the baseball.
I also flattened out my swing a little. That has helped me in this league because a lot of fly balls are going to get caught. Ground balls and line drives are what I focus on this year, and so far it has helped.
BS: Patience at the plate is now a strength of yours. How important to you is being able to draw a walk in a key situation?
LM: It’s very important. The other team might not want to give me anything to hit so I have to know when to be aggressive and when to be extra patient. That is just trusting that the guy behind you will get it done
BS: What aspects of your game are you most focused on improving at this stage in your young career?
LM: I don’t think of it as improving. I just need to learn more, which will help me improve. I need to learn when to be aggressive on defense and when to go get a ball in the hole. I need to understand what a pitcher is thinking, so this will give me a better idea on how to attack him.
BS: Has the adjustment of being away from home for such long periods of time been difficult for you? What are some things you do to pass the time when you’re not on the field?
LM: No, it hasn’t been because I’m in a place that feels like home. I’m doing what I love to do. That sounds like home to me. In my free time I like to watch TV and work out.
BS: At the rate you are going, it’s possible you could be headed to Carolina in the near future. Do you feel you are ready for the challenge of Double-A, and how hard will it be to leave some of your teammates?
LM: I feel I’m ready for any challenge, I don’t think about it too much because it’s out of my control. I’m in Jupiter so I’m going to give my all every day because my teammates, coaches, and I deserve it.BS: What current or former major leaguers would you say your game most resembles? Who do you model your game after, if anyone?
LM: The first name that comes to my head is James Loney. I model my game after George Brett, because not only was he a great teammate, but also a great player.
BS: Last question Logan, and be honest: Would you rather have three hits in a loss, or take an O-fer in a victory?
LM: Depends on the game, but I would have to say three hits.
Brett Sullivan can be reached at Sullivan10x@yahoo.com.