Marson improving with regular at-bats

Marson improving with regular at-bats

CLEVELAND -- A month ago, Lou Marson had a .080 batting average. The Indians catcher had only two hits in 25 at-bats after going 0-for-4 on May 15.

Even though he was struggling, Marson started to get more opportunities when Cleveland was bit by the injury bug. Starting catcher Carlos Santana missed eight games with a concussion, and Marson got more regular at-bats.

With the extra playing time, the hits have started coming. Marson is 12-for-30 with three RBIs in his last 11 games, and his average was all the way up to .246 entering Friday's game against the Pirates. He was 9-for-23 (.391) with three RBIs in seven June games.

"Any time you can get more at-bats, you kind of have a better feel for the strike zone and what you wanna do," Marson said. "You have a consistent approach at the plate, rather than just going up there and swinging if you get a fastball. I can't hit like that.

"I feel like I've kind of been in control of my at-bats. Before, I was just trying to do too much and not being in control of the at-bat. I feel good now. I don't really want to talk about it or think about it, I just want to play the game and do well."

Marson's recent success at the plate gives manager Manny Acta more options with his lineup. He can move Santana to first base or use him as a designated hitter more often without feeling like he's losing offense at the catcher position. Acta can also use Marson as a right-handed pinch-hitter, something he would be unlikely to do a month ago.