Feldman: Wong has more appreciation for Major Leagues than ever before
MILWAUKEE, WI - JULY 12: Kolten Wong #16 of the St. Louis Cardinals hits a single in the top of the fifth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on July 12, 2014 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images) By Mike McGinnis
MILWAUKEE, WI - JULY 11: Kolten Wong #16 of the St. Louis Cardinals hits a solo home run in the top sixth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on July 11, 2014 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images) By Mike McGinnis
(BaseballStL) -- This offseason the Cardinals made a huge, franchise altering decision. They traded hometown (and World Series) hero David Freese to create room – via Matt Carpenter changing positions – for Kolten Wong. They created room for a guy who had proven as much as you or I at the big league level.
They did so because they believed his minor league success as a regular .300 hitter would translate. And right out of the gate this year, it most certainly did not. As of July 6, Wong was hitting just .228 and had more strikeouts (18) than runs scored (14).
But since then, as everyone knows, he’s been as hot as anyone in the game. Five home runs in a one week span? A .361 batting average? Yes, it’s a very small sample, but it appears the former 1st round pick is figuring things out.
Despite all the struggles he’s had to this point, does the 23-year old have more of an appreciation for what it takes to succeed at the Major League level?
“My goodness, ya. As you can see my big league so far has been tough,” Wong said. “I’ve been through so much adversity and so much ups and downs that I have the utmost appreciation for what it is to be a big leaguer.”
And confidence is what drives success more than anything.
“That’s exactly what it is. Hitting is not easy. Especially at this level it’s not easy at all. When you’re going good you definitely have more confidence than when you are not,” Wong said.
The Cardinals traded a hometown hero to make room for Wong. It’s starting to look like he’s proving they made the right move.