St. Louis Cardinals: Greg Garcia aims to improve defense

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Aimed with better defense and his old school tenacity, St. Louis Cardinals’ Greg Garcia wants to make the team.

Every spring, St. Louis Cardinals infielder Greg Garcia believes he has to be ready to thrill. He goes in every new season trying to make the team. A simple and opportunistic approach. “If you go in and just go through the motions, you won’t stand out.”

That is the fighters attitude for a guy like Garcia, someone has been lodged behind Pete Kozma for years and now has to work with Jedd Gyorko and incoming Aledmys Diaz to bump Kolten Wong and Jhonny Peralta for playing time in 2016. He worked on his defense this offseason with his brother Drew and working with Jose Oquendo in the spring will also help.

What was his reaction to Kozma’s departure? “On the field or off the field, he was a great help. Nothing but the best for Pete.”

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Garcia likes to be ready to play as many infield spots as he can in order to get more playing time and be ready in 2016. He finds playing shortstop is the one that needs the most work because it makes you great everywhere else. “If you can shortstop, you can second and third. Shortstop is the most demanding for me and I focus my workouts there.”

Garcia was a guy who could come off the bench after barely getting any time in 2015. How does he do that and stay sharp? “Ability but also talking to veterans. At one point, they had to do that and get only one at bat per game. Be mentally and physically ready.”

Next: Tommy Pham goals for 2016

He may not have a set role in 2016 but Garcia is hungry for more at bats and playing time.

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