Frazier hopes home-like scene will cure enigmatic skid
PHILADELPHIA -- Games away from Great American Ball Park this season have been anything but kind to Reds third baseman Todd Frazier. At home, Frazier is batting .293 with all six of his home runs. On the road, he entered Friday batting .131.
Frazier is at a loss to explain the Grand Canyon-like chasm in his home/road splits.
"That's a great question," Frazier said before Friday's game. "Last year, I enjoyed hitting on the road. I like that feeling of being on the team no one roots for. I build off that. For some reason this year, I don't know what it is. It's weird. I can't really pinpoint it. I feel great at the plate. It's just not clicking. It boggles my mind. That's the most confusing part about this year for me."
In 2012, Frazier hit .286 with nine homers and 33 RBIs on the road compared with .258, 10 homers and 34 RBIs at home.
Batting .221 overall this season, Frazier took an 0-for-13 stretch in his last three games as the Reds swept the Marlins in Miami. Reds manager Dusty Baker has seen nothing mechanically wrong with Frazier's swing.
"He hit a couple of balls on the nose," Baker said. "That's why we put the hit and run on him [Thursday] to have him stay on the ball. Most of the time when you're not hitting well, you're pulling off the ball; you have a quick shoulder or a quick hip. You're not using the whole field."
For the next six games, Frazier has a chance to feel at home while on the road. The New Jersey native and resident will get to play in Philadelphia and New York. He expects to have 15 to 20 family members and friends at each game.
"It's good to be close to home; I think I need something like this," Frazier said. "It's a good time for me. I'm getting a little frustrated out there at times. It's been two weeks but seems like a whole year. I've never been through this. I don't like to call it a slump. If I get into a slump, I'm swinging at bad pitches. The last game [on Thursday], I had four good at-bats and hit three balls hard. There were two good plays. I can't do anything about it. I have to keep fighting and get a good pitch to hit. I will be fine.
"I don't necessarily need four hits a game. I can do one or two good things a game and play good defense. I've been helping out in that department at least."