Kansas City Royals catcher John Buck joins Players Talk to discuss his growth as a baseball player, and the changes he has made that have led to his breakthrough season thus far in 2007.
A top prospect in the Houston Astros system, Buck was traded to Kansas City in 2004 as part of the Carlos Beltran deal. After a promising rookie campaign in '04, Buck struggled throughout the next two seasons, but has come into his own this year.
Buck credits experience and a more cerebral understanding of the game for his success this season. So far in 2007, Buck is hitting .295 with seven home runs and 15 RBIs, while having yielded just eight stolen bases on defense. He says he feels more comfortable with his skills, both at the plate and behind it.
"Staying within myself is helping me have quality at-bats," Buck says. "If a walk is all my at-bat produces, take it; don't try to hit that five-run home run every at-bat."
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