Ethier experimenting with different bats
By AL BALDERAS
The Orange County Register
DENVER If MaxBat, a company that manufactures bats for several major-leaguers, needs someone to endorse its product, Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier might be a good place to start.
Ethier started the season 2 for 18 before he finally got his swing back. He broke the .200-average mark with three hits against the San Diego Padres on April 15 and took a .250 average into Thursday's game at Colorado.
"I figured out a better approach," said Ethier, who has hits in five of his past six games. "I tinkered around with my swing to get it back where it needs to be. Most of it was my approach, but I've been experimenting with bats and stuff like that."
Ethier went back to a model of bat he was most familiar with — the one made by MaxBat.
"I went to the old bat that I used last year," he said. "Maybe it's something mental, but I think that going back to the old bat and the way it feels and balances, that has something to do with it. It's a little bit heavier.
"I tried to lighten up a little bit (when the season began), use something a little bit lighter and create a little more bat speed. I thought it would give me a little more time to wait (on pitches) but I think I had a little too much confidence with the light bat. You get a little too jumpy on things."
So what made him try different bats after using MaxBat and finishing his rookie season with a .308 average?
"I just had a lot of different options to choose from," he said, "and we get a lot of stuff sent to us from other companies to try. I wanted to see what else was out there".
He'll undoubtedly stick with his MaxBat for the rest of the season, but that won't stop him from picking up a bat made from one of the "other guys" every once in awhile.
"I have a couple of options," he said, "but I've used MaxBats in the past and had success with them."