Mills diagnoses difference in Martinez's swing

Mills diagnoses difference in Martinez's swing

HOUSTON -- Astros manager Brad Mills and outfielder J.D. Martinez sat down in Mills' office on Saturday and discussed the differences between Martinez's swing in 2011 and his swing in '12.

Mills pulled up video of Martinez's swing from last season and this season on his laptop, noting some differences. The immediate results were promising. Martinez hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning on Saturday and a two-run homer in the eighth inning on Sunday.

Mills wouldn't divulge his diagnosis of Martinez's swing, but he did say the talk mostly centered around Martinez's ability to recognize and react to pitches.

"The only way you can put yourself in a position to make those adjustments is if you give yourself time to be able to make those adjustments," Mills said. "To be able to do that, you have to be on time."

Martinez plants his front foot early, using his hands as his timing mechanism.

"It just felt to me that he wasn't allowing himself to adjust on any of the pitches," Mills said. "If a particular pitch was a particular speed in a particular spot, he was going to hit it pretty good. But if it wasn't, he was going to be in trouble." Martinez was batting .230/.318/.391 heading into Sunday's matinee. He batted .274/.319/.423 in '11.