Slugging prospect Gallo works out with two All-Stars
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Minor League third baseman Joey Gallo is getting some high-level mentoring this winter from a couple of Major League All-Stars. Gallo said he has been working out regularly with Jason Giambi and Troy Tulowitzki at the Philippi Sports Institute in his hometown of Las Vegas.
"Giambi has been pretty much working with me all the time," Gallo said. "He has been showing me the ropes mentally and working with me on hitting."
Gallo was at the Winter Meetings on Monday to accept the Joe Baumer Award for top home run hitter in the Minor Leagues this past season. Gallo hit .251 with 40 home runs and 88 RBIs in 111 games last season, missing a month at Class A Hickory because of a torn groin muscle that has healed completely. He also struck out 172 times while drawing 50 walks.
Tulowitzki is helpful when it comes to hitting, but Giambi would be a good player for Gallo to emulate. They are both left-handed hitters with well-above-average power. But Giambi also had good discipline at the plate. He has a .400 career on-base percentage and seven seasons with at least 100 walks. He led the league in walks four times.
Tulowitzki has helped Gallo mostly with his defense. Gallo has played third base since the Rangers selected him in the first round of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, but is 6-foot-5 and there have been suggestions he might be better suited to play right field or first base.
"I like to think I'm athletic enough to play third base," Gallo said.