Constant failure eventually wears down a person. No matter how confident they may be, if they find themselves unable to perform the task that they are paid to do, that will start to creep into their mind. Even for a major league ballplayer, a prolonged slump, such as the one Mike Moustakas had to start the season, will erode that confidence until there is nothing left.
Even the Royals master of the obvious, Ned Yost, indicated that Moustakas had lost his confidence. Not only was Moustakas providing virtually nothing in the lineup, but his play had been affecting his presence in the dugout and in the clubhouse. To Yost, it seemed as though Moustakas’s attitude was almost as troubling as his lack of production.
So, it was Mike Moustakas’s body language that was the deciding factor in finally sending him to Omaha? Moustakas moping around the clubhouse was the final straw? It is nice to see that such a brilliant baseball mind such as Yost was able to read that Moustakas was unable to contribute based on how he was acting. Guess that .152/.223/.320 batting line, and the fact that Moustakas had only one hit in his last thirteen at bats, were merely figments of our imagination.
That lack of production should have punched Moustakas’s ticket to Omaha long ago. Instead, the Royals refused to accept the fact that they had a third baseman who was in desperate need of a refresher course in AAA to attempt to get his swing back. They waited until his confidence had eroded to the point that his body language was apparently a distraction, where even the seemingly oblivious Ned Yost could see that there was something wrong.
Why did it take this long? Why did the Royals wait until Mike Moustakas had seemingly lost any confidence in his ability to hit the baseball until they sent him to AAA? Yes, Moustakas is a fine defensive third baseman, but having him rediscover his swing and remain confident in his abilities are far more important than what he can provide with the glove. Hopefully, that inordinately long delay did not adversely effect Moustakas over the long term, to the point where is confidence is irrevocably shattered.
Mike Moustakas is now trying to regain his swing, and his confidence, in Omaha. If he is unable to, it may be fair to wonder if the Royals completely mismanaged Moustakas over the past year and a quarter.