It’s the right time to hit lefty for Red Sox outfielder Daniel Nava


One of the bigger stories to come out of Fenway South at JetBlue Park yesterday was the news that Daniel Nava has come to the decision with the Red Sox coaching staff to stop switch hitting and only hit from the left side. After hitting lefty against a variety of left-handed pitchers in the Sox organization, Nava let the cat out of the bag.

“We’re just seeing if lefty-lefty can be a viable option. There’s only one way to find out, give it a shot. Obviously, it’s an adjustment because I’ve never done lefty-lefty and something you’ve never done before is going to be an adjustment period but I’d like to think I can do it based on my approach and not trying to pull the ball, remains to be seen.”

Whether this was a move that Nava came to on his own or if it was suggested or required by the Boston coaching staff/front office is unknown, but Nava did say that it was something he had been contemplating in the offseason.

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This is very smart move and definitely comes at the right time for the 27 year old outfielder from California. In his third year in the Red Sox organization, he looks like he may be one of the odd men out in a very crowded, talented outfield. With Shane Victorino returning from injury, Allen Craig coming around and the emergence of Mookie Betts and Rusney Castillo, it’s a make-it-or-break it year for Nava. He avoided arbitration in the offseason and signed a one year deal worth 1.85 million dollars, so he needs to make a solid contribution in order to continue his career, whether that be on Yawkey Way or in another uniform.

While it won’t be easy for Nava to get used hitting lefties from the same side and there is going to be a learning curve, it’s something that Daniel believes is worth trying. “My swing is still the same and my approach is still the same, so hopefully it will go smoothly.” He only hit .159 from the right side in 2014, while hitting a solid .293 from the left side.

Nava has the right mindset to undergo such a transformation and is treating it as if it’s just as much of mental challenge as it is a physical challenge. He has been gathering as much info from current teammates and former Red Sox personnel as he can. He’s always had a positive attitude and is someone that is easy to root for, so let’s hope it works out for the young man who blasted a homer in first ever at-bat at Fenway Park in perfect, story-book fashion.