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Robert Brender: You must be feeling great with the bat right now?
John Buck: Yeah, I’ve been putting together pretty good at-bats, getting myself in good counts and, when they’re making a mistake, putting good wood on it.
Robert Brender: Are you looking early for fastballs?
John Buck: I was last year, but I think there were some things with my swing that would actually make me foul it off a lot more. I’m just not missing it when I get it early in the count. But also, I think more with my approach, when I get two strikes I feel a lot more relaxed, which is getting me back into those full counts, 2-2 counts where they might be a little more aggressive. So, the combination of those two are obviously helping.
Robert Brender: When you change organizations and you have to also worry about a pitching staff and learning that new staff, does that make working on your game at the plate that much more difficult?
John Buck: I would like to say yes, just because it sounds better, but no. I think playing for so long and being traded before has helped me realize how to separate it and have it be two different arenas and keep it that way. It’s two totally separate things and as long as I keep it that way it really doesn’t interfere.
Robert Brender: How much fun is it to catch Matt Harvey right now?
John Buck: What makes him so fun is he can be a thrower, like the first two or three games that he threw and just be lightning, lights out and untouchable. But the last two games, with LA and then the Marlins, they were swinging early and they were putting the ball in play and (making) contact. He was able to pitch backwards and make the adjustment on the fly, and for a young guy to do that - pitch backwards and throw his secondary pitches early rather than late - says a lot for him and obviously his upside.
Robert Brender is a broadcaster for Long Beach State Men's Basketball, host of Your 49er Insider and guest contributor to MetsBlog.com and MetsMinorLeagueBlog.com.