The St. Louis Cardinals are not playing games but that isn’t forcing Paul Goldschmidt to not take MLB-level at-bats. How is he staying sharp?
On Sunday, we took a look at what St. Louis Cardinals‘ outfielder, Dexter Fowler, was doing during his time away from baseball. That offered a great look into his personal life, but he was less forthcoming about his baseball-related habits during the quarantine.
Per Goold’s article from the St. Louis Post dispatch, both Goldschmidt and Carpenter bought the VR setup during spring training from WIN Reality. What this gear does is allow the wearer to see the ballpark, see the plate, and most importantly, face any pitcher they wanted to.
Here is a little demo on how it looks, but the advantages of a system like this can be crazy. As Goold notes, in the mornings during spring, Goldschmidt would hop into his “office” and take a few reps against the pitcher he was set to face that day.
Apparently the product is realistic enough that Goldschmidt hopped onboard and is actually an investor in WIN Reality. If that’s not an endorsement, I don’t know what is.
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Before the season was delayed, Goldschmidt moved his family down to Jupiter, Florida which is where he is currently.
With his wife and two daughters under the age of five, he still is making time to workout in an “old school” gym he has set up at his home. Goldschmidt, who dealt with some elbow soreness at the beginning of spring training, has scaled back on his workouts some, but with the new VR tool, he can stay sharp against any MLB pitching he wants.
Goldschmidt said, “It’s everything and more you’d get from watching normal video but instead of on a flat screen you’re in it.” it will be extremely interesting to see if there is a true difference when play starts back up again.
He has plans to travel with the VR gear so that in his hotel room before the day’s game, he can get as many at-bats as he wants against the opposing pitcher, but with no consequences. With the database built into the system, Goldschmidt can even go back and rewatch any of his old at-bats against any pitcher. This lets him see how he was attacked before.
It almost doesn’t seem fair.
The results from this machine looked good so far as Goldschmidt had a 1.162 OPS in spring, but it’s a whole new test to see how it keeps him game-ready during this break. Goldschmidt will be the first to tell you that he was unhappy with how his stats looked at the end of 2019 and thus far it looks like a bounceback is coming.