Hey, remember in 2005 when Devil Rays infielder Jorge Cantu surprised everyone and hit all those home runs and had all those doubles? And then remember 2006 and 2007 when Cantu couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with the broad side of another barn and was subsequently traded to the Reds and then summarily released? Well, Cantu is back, this time with the Marlins, and he is tearin' up spring training thanks to an offseason program that involved underwater yoga:
"We have our own techniques," trainer Dennis Fay said of the Texas Sports Medicine facility in Houston. "We use water exercises, breathing-underwater drills, extreme yoga. We work on a player's bat speed with a series of chains. The chains are on a handle, and they swing the chains to build up their speed."
Oh, excuse me, I misspoke. It's underwater extreme yoga. What the heck does that mean anyway? The downward facing doggypaddle? Ba ha ha! (insert yoga/swimming comedy pyramid here)
Cantu is indeed hitting well this spring. He's got a .706 slugging percentage, what with eight of his 22 hits being doubles, and looks to become the Marlins starting third baseman now that Florida has cut Jose Castillo loose. Still, former Marlins third baseman and baseball's latest chubby tycoon Miguel Cabrera is a tough act to follow and 50 at-bats against all different grades of pitchers is no way to truly evaluate talent. Perhaps if the Marlins installed one of these in their training room, Cantu will continue to mash.
(We once again owe a Coke to Baseball Musings)