Kris Bryant To Change Hitting Routine

With a shoulder injury, Bryant will scale back on his cage work.

Bruce Levine
August 12, 2018 - 10:30 am
Kris Bryant

Sergio Estrada/USA Today Sports


CHICAGO (670 The Score) -- The road back to full recovery hasn't been an easy trek for Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant.

Bryant has been on the disabled list twice since hurting his left shoulder on a head-first slide in mid-June and remains there, even though he's making progress.

"No pain," Bryant said. "It feels good."

After trying to play through the pain and re-injuring the shoulder on a home run swing, Bryant has been sidelined since July 24. Starting to swing the bat for the first time in almost three weeks, Bryant has no set date for his return quite yet.

"I feel a lot better," Bryant said Saturday. "I am at the beginning stages of some dry swings and hitting off of a tee. That is where I am at. Still going kind of slow. That seems to be the smart thing to do."

Bryant, 26, has long been known to put in long sessions in the batting cage honing his swing. It was a hallmark of his rise to stardom and what he relied on to find his rhythm.

That said, Bryant understands times change, as does his body. The rigors of playing 200 games a season in the big leagues has taken its toll, and he plans to scale back a bit on hitting preparation.

"You just can't go every day and swing, swing, swing," Bryant said. "These injuries might bark at you from time to time. It is nice for me to see early in my career you can change. I want to play until I am 40. I am glad it happened this early.

"The problem might have come from taking too many game-like swings in the cage. I was doing that off the machine and in BP and continued to do that. Whereas in the game you may take five to 10 swings a game at that intensity. In the cage, you want to slow things down and work on taking it nice and easy. I always practiced at half-speed and had gotten a little away from that. The plan going forward is practice a little slower in the cage and in batting practice, so you have more in the game.

"Hopefully, this will make me a better player knowing there are things I need to do to maintain my body. Hopefully it will make me stronger for it. As much as it stinks, I see it as a win for me.

So when will Bryant return to action?

"I am not asking our trainers right now," he said. "They don't want to put a time on it. I think things are going in the right direction. Things are working for me. I feel confident (coming back) in my mind. I am totally confident I will be back."

Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine.​​​​