Phillies Top Prospect J.P. Crawford Learning Importance of Adjustments – and Some Video

J.P. Crawford knew he had to take a look.

One of baseball's top prospects and the crown jewel of the Phillies' farm system, Crawford started the 2017 season 4 for 48 (.083) through 14 games with Triple A Lehigh Valley.

Not exactly an advocate of lengthy film studies, the 22-year-old shortstop dug up some past video and noticed a difference in the positioning of his hands. In 2015, they were higher as he would load to square up a pitch and bring the barrel down through the zone.

It was time to change back.

"Now my hands are back up here and I'm able to drive some stuff," Crawford said on Monday in an interview with CSNPhilly's Marshall Harris. "Hit the ball harder and feel a lot more comfortable."

Thanks to a quick clip, Crawford is feeling better. Ultimately, though, just being himself is his greatest focus. Don't expect Crawford with his head buried in film.

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"If you're doing good, if you're doing bad, you look at the video and it causes me to think - causes me to think a lot more than I have too," Crawford said. "I just try to go out there and do me and have fun doing it. I don't like to think about where my hands are or timing and all that stuff. I just like going out there and just playing."

IronPigs manager Dusty Wathan said it was hard to tell a change in Crawford's confidence, a testament to the prospect's maturity.

"He was searching, he was frustrated, but he handled himself," Wathan said. "Looking for a couple things, looking at video, guys talk to him. We're here to help him but the biggest thing is you look at him and you think you couldn't tell if [he] went 3 for 3 or 0 for 3 - not taking it into the field, playing great defense for us."

Wathan believes a better Crawford will come from it.

"Failure sometimes I think is just as important as having success in the minor leagues," Wathan said, "because they learn how to deal with the failure, learn how to deal with the success and they don't end up being a roller-coaster ride. I think it's important for development."

Crawford, the 16th overall pick in the 2013 draft, is coming along slowly since those 14 games. In the 14 that have followed, he is 11 for 50 (.220) to raise his average to .153. Over that span, he also has as many walks as strikeouts (nine). Getting on base is what Crawford prides his approach on, and that's been there since he was drafted.

"I love walks," he said. "I love getting on base. I'll take them if I can get them.

"You're on base and it gives someone a chance to get an RBI."

Despite the poor numbers thus far, Crawford feels he's growing by learning at Triple A.

His mind isn't fixated on a future call to the majors.

"I just go out there every day and try to get better, whether it's offensively or defensively, try to get stronger, faster, something," he said. "Something each day to get better and when that time comes, it comes."

What's coming are hotter temperatures - and that excites the native of Lakewood, California.

"Wait for the weather to get a little warmer," he said, "and have the wind blowing out to right field."

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