Washington Nationals center fielder Michael A. Taylor had a strong postseason in 2017, hitting .333 with two homers and eight RBIs as Washington lost in five games to the Chicago Cubs.
But Taylor changed his workout approach this past winter.
“I tried to focus more on flexibility and speed,” Taylor told The Washington Times on Tuesday. “In the past it was more on power.”
Taylor will stay in center field this year while the Nationals move veteran Adam Eaton to left. Eaton started in center at the beginning of last season but was injured in late April and was out for the rest of the year.
Taylor came up through the minor league system with the ability to hit for power and also steal bases.
He broke into the majors in 2014 and spent part of 2015 with Triple-A Syracuse, where his hitting coach was Joe Dillon. A former Texas Tech player, Dillon is in his first season as the assistant hitting coach for the Nationals.
“He is a guy that is passionate. He puts as much time in as we do,” Taylor said.
Taylor hit .271 with 19 homers in 118 games last season for the Nationals.