How Giants prospect Carter Aldrete fixed his swing and jump-started his career

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Carter Aldrete knew he needed a change. The swing that had taken him to professional baseball wasn’t getting it done any longer, so he spent his offseason at the Giants’ minor-league complex at Papago Park working with the Giants’ player development group to rebuild it.

“We really went to work this offseason,” Aldrete said in a phone interview last Thursday. “Thank God I live in Arizona and I had access to them. I just told them, ‘I don’t care what my swing feels like, I don’t care what it looks like, I need it to work.’”

So began the process of breaking down Aldrete’s swing to build it back up again. He and Giants minor-league hitting instructor Mike McCormack looked at the video and the Giants ran a full diagnostic to see where Aldrete’s body needed to improve from a conditioning perspective and to pinpoint what movements were working and which ones needed to change to get Aldrete in the best position to recognize pitches and attack them.

“I told Mike, ‘I will be in here every day for three hours. I don’t care how long it takes. I don’t care what it takes, this has to happen.’ And he looked right at me and said, ‘Let’s do it. I’m in,’” Aldrete said. “I bugged him for three months straight. And we were in the cage every day for two to three hours, video, drills, you name it, we were doing it.”

McCormack said Aldrete’s self-awareness and willingness to make drastic changes were key to finding a swing that would work for him.

“I think he had a really good idea of what he wanted to do, and really how he wanted to get there,” McCormack said over the phone on Saturday. “He himself had a lot of really good ideas, and it was more of working together to have a plan of how are we going to get there by looking at what he had done in the past and who he was in the past, and where we wanted to go with it.

“He was really committed to his work. And obviously, he worked really hard for it.”