Pascucci Keeps Thumping
Pascucci currently has a .981 OPS
Pascucci currently has a .981 OPS
New Orleans Feature Writer
Posted Jul 22, 2008


Outfielder Val Pascucci made an instant impact when he was signed out of the International League back in April as he added instant power production to the New Orleans lineup. Nearly two and a half months later, he is still putting up big offensive numbers as he looks to stay consistent, but keeping himself ready as a possible option whenever the big league club may need him.

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Twenty-nine-year-old right-hander Val Pascucci joined the Mets organization this season after playing in the PCL at Albuquerque last season. With lots of power and patience at the plate, New Orleans power hitter Valentino Pascucci leads the Zephyrs in home runs [19] walks at 53. With his consistency and power at the plate, he hopes to get a call up to New York in September.

His numbers have been consistent this season with a strong average around .300, peaking at .327 in June. As well as having the most walks on the team, Pascucci is tied with Chris Aguila, including some game winning homers in extra innings. Pascucci attributes his success at the plate to his hard work before each game.

“Just doing all the stuff early before the game, like going out and doing flips in the batting cage and just trying to keep my swing the way it is, definitely not trying to overdo it,” he said.

Over-swinging and chasing bad pitches can be detrimental to a batter’s performance, but Pascucci is comfortable with his easy swing. His ease at the plate is evident in his solid numbers for the season.

“When you’re going good, keep a nice easy swing and just try and drive the ball up the middle, kind of like what I’ve always done and I hope it continues throughout the year,” he said.

With Pascucci’s solid numbers, it is not surprising that he leads the Zephyrs in with 54 RBI since he bats mostly in the four-spot. His high base-on-ball percentage is not a surprise either as he stays composed at the plate and is highly selective with the pitches he takes.

“It has always been that way for me,” Pascucci said of his high walk total. “I’ve been hitting in the 3, 4, 5 hole, mostly 4 for my whole career. Pitchers are trying to get you to chase pitches, give you pitcher’s pitches, throwing the off speed and getting you to chase. I try to stay disciplined up there [at the plate] and not chase the pitcher’s pitches, look for what I’m looking for and get aggressive when I see my pitch so it turns into a lot of walks.”

His pitch selection and walks then set up lefties behind him, by catching the pitcher off guard and creating a hole leading to more runs.

“Usually if there is a left handed guy behind me it will open up a hole for him and get some runners on base and score some runs,” Pascucci said.

While he is producing solid numbers in the minors, he is still looking to be a productive hitter for the Mets if and when he is called up to New York. Pascucci was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in 1996, but opted out to play college ball in Oklahoma instead. His major league debut came in 2004 for the Expos where he had two homers and six RBIs in Montréal, but he was released by the Nationals in 2004 and hasn’t played in the Majors since then.

Pascucci doesn’t view his hiatus from the big leagues as a disappointment as he views his opportunity to be called up to be out of his control. Instead of worrying about what the GM thinks in New York, Pascucci is quietly focused on his current role as a Zephyr, hoping that someone will take notice of his exceptional performance during the playoffs.

“It’s kind of out of my control,” Pascucci said of his chance of playing the majors after four years. “ All I can do is take care of what I’m doing on the field, what I try to do is go out and play hard and like I said, if someone takes notice, then hopefully I will go up there and help the Mets play.

”You never know what the GM or those other guys are going to decide up in the big leagues so you try to do your best down here and that’s what I’ve been doing.”



Related Stories
Aguila Returns Following Promotion
 -by InsidePitchMagazine.com  Jun 24, 2008
Pascucci at Home in the Pacific Coast League
 -by InsidePitchMagazine.com  May 15, 2008
Cubs Have Interest in Outfielder
 -by NorthsidersReport.com  Apr 30, 2008

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