OK, it doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as Kevin Youkilis’ nickname, but for now, it’ll do. Has anyone else noticed how Hank Conger, our prized young catcher, has turned into a veritable walking machine down at AA? It’s apparent that now that Scioscia and Hatcher have found religion, they’re preaching it to the kids. And at least one of them is listening.
Last year, Hank the Bank had only 14 walks ALL YEAR. Sure, he only played half the season due to injuries, but still. This year, he has 23 walks in only 37 games since his all-star break, resulting in a post all-star break line of .321/.419/.470. He had only 19 walks before the break, so apparently, something clicked. Furthermore, he is striking out less. Very cool (Overall, his slash stats are .298/.367/.421 – the power IS down this year, but I don’t see a reason to be alarmed…yet).
He is developing nicely and should be ready by 2011. That way, we can have TWO catchers sitting on the bench behind Mathis.