A minor mechanical tweak and a significant attitude adjustment has Colby Rasmus brimming with excitement for the 2012 season.
The 25-year-old centre fielder, acquired by the Toronto Blue Jays from the St. Louis Cardinals last July, has reportedly toned down an aggressive leg-kick that was disrupting his timing at the plate, and Blue Jays manager John Farrell is enthused about his potential.
"From a fundamental standpoint, the more controlled leg kick, he was able to handle the ball away from him, handle the ball on the inner part of the plate, he was hitting the ball to all fields," Farrell says.
But perhaps more importantly, the notoriously surly Rasmus has come into spring training with a new outlook, one that's decidedly different from that of the hot-tempered youngster who frequently butted heads with Cardinals skipper Tony La Russa.
"The most important thing that stood out was his eagerness and his attitude of being very positive, couldn't wait to get to camp and couldn't wait to get back involved," says Farrell.
The former first-round draft pick will play an integral role in the revolution currently underway north of the border. Cost-controllable with a high-ceiling, Rasmus represents the kind of team that general manager Alex Anthopoulos is trying to build.
Alongside other burgeoning talents like Brett Lawrie, J.P. Arencibia, and Henderson Alvarez, Rasmus will be a huge factor in the success -- or failure -- of a very young Toronto Blue Jays team in 2012.