It’s no secret that, after the first month and a half, last year was a rough one for Kris Bryant. It took a while for the particulars on what he was dealing with to come out, but once we could see the whole picture, it was clear: a dominant player was dominating, then he hurt his shoulder, he tried to play through it, he tried to rest it, he tried to change his swing, he tried to come back, and it was all just kinda not quite right.
Even still, it’s not like Bryant was a bad player during that post-injury stretch, he just wasn’t anything close to his usual self at the plate (.255/.343/.385, 98 wRC+, just five homers after May 19). An offseason of rest – hopefully not surgery – was in order.
Rest it was. No surgery for Bryant. He was feeling better pretty quickly, and was rocking the cages with his usual swing just a few months into the offseason.
Today, he played in his first game of 2019, homering and singling in his first two Spring Training at bats. And he’s taking everything he went through last year – everything he read and heard about himself – and putting it to good use.
Don’t cross Kris this year:
Kris Bryant, asked if he felt slighted at all by some fan/media reaction to his offensive struggles in 2018… pic.twitter.com/MBnumzEkub
— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) February 23, 2019
“Bring it on” pic.twitter.com/meyIPbAJzY
— Mark Gonzales (@MDGonzales) February 23, 2019