It’s Been a Up-and-Down Year for Cody Asche
After a hot start, Asche started the season 12-for-24, and was hitting .303 entering the month of May.
However, on May 11, the Phillies sent Asche to Triple-A Lehigh Valley to learn how to play left field, leading to an eventual promotion of Maikel Franco to take over at third base.
Asche joined me on the Sports Bash on Thursday and admitted this season has really hasn't been easy for him.
"No, it really hasn't," Asche admitted. "There's been a lot of up's and down's for sure - but that's baseball. We know what we're getting ourselves into when we pick this profession. This year has really been a test, on myself as a person, my character and my work ethic.
"When I went down to triple-A, I had a couple of days where you feel sorry for yourself, you kind of analyze and doubt yourself."
Asche batted .295 with one homer over 15 games for Lehigh Valley while making the conversion from third base to left field - he's now played 60 games in the outfield and says he is feeling more-and-more comfortable out there everyday.
"I'm pretty comfortable with the basics of it," Asche said about playing his new position.
"There's still a lot left to learn, a lot left to master, different plays, different situations, getting to the point where you don't have to think too much about what to do, you just let your instincts take over. I'm really excited to take what i've learned from this year and coming into spring training."
At 25 years old, Asche is now one of the older players on the Phillies roster, younger players are turning to him, just like he once turned to players like Chase Utley and Jimmy Rollins when he made the transition from minor leaguer to big leaguer.
"It's kind of wild to think about," admitted Asche. "Coming from the way the team was two years ago when I first got called up to now with a lot of new faces in here. A lot of are really embracing getting closer as teammates and getting to know each other and playing with each other and having fun with each other every single day - I think we have a good vibe going."
During his short stint in Philadelphia, Asche gravitated to Rollins and Utley, emulating a lot of what he learned from his former infield mates each and every day.
"We were always hitting together, taking ground balls together, I learned a ton from them," described Asche. "Chase taught me just about everything I know about being a big leaguer. I try to emulate the way he approaches every single game, prepares for every single at-bat, every single inning on defense. Jimmy I took a lot from him, the way he is always relaxed, he never lets a situation get too big for him."
While Jimmy and Chase may have helped Cody on the field, new manager Pete Mackanin has las had a hand in Asche making the transition from third base to left field, from minor leagues to big leagues.
"For sure," Asche said. "I think there a lot of people who are a lot more relaxed now than we were. He keeps it light and he just wants us to play hard and to be the players we are capable of being. I've had many conversation with Pete, with him reminding me of who I am and what I can be as a player. I know regardless that guy cheers for me in the dugout, he wants me to succeed."
(Listen to Cody Asche on the Sports Bash talk about his 2015 season)
Cody will be signing autographs this Saturday from noon until 1:00 p.m. at Citizens Bank Park at the Majestic Clubhouse Store. Asche will sign an autograph for every fan who purchases a “Together We Fight” t-shirt (limit 4 shirts per purchase), each t-shirt costs $24.99.