BRADENTON, Fla. (93-7 The Fan) – Outfielder Travis Snider didn’t pay immediate dividends, in fact he didn’t do much at all after coming to the Pirates from Toronto last season.
In 50 games, Snider hit .250 with one home run, one triple and five doubles and just nine runs batted in plus his OPS was a meager .652 – especially weak for a corner outfielder.
He was hampered by a nagging hamstring injury last season but this spring “no issues,” says Snider who adds that “knowing guys from last season makes this easier (to get a fresh start).”
“I’m going to let the process unfold,” says Snider who is competing with a rejuvenated Jose Tabata for a starting spot and, so far, Tabata is also having a good spring.
“I’m not going to sit around and root against people,” Snider said. “As at bats start to pile up, we’re looking for ways to improve – pitch selection, being more aggressive with 2 strikes or just using the whole field.”
Snider says shortstop Clint Barmes is his veteran go-to guy.
“He understands what it takes every day to show up and be a professional,” he said.
He also credits another veteran, pitcher A.J. Burnett, with helping him come up with his creative Twitter handle: @lunchboxhero45.
“First, I carry a lot my stuff — like batting gloves — in a lunch box,” Snider said as he picked up his small canvas lunch box with the P logo.
Burnett suggested the “hero” part because of Snider’s proficiency at the video game, Guitar Hero, when they were teammates in Toronto.
“I was an avid Guitar Hero player a few years ago,” Snider said. “I could really shred.”
Now Snider – and the Pirates – would like to see some of that shredding out of the batter’s box.
The full interview can be heard here: