Morrison hit just .163 with two home runs and seven RBIs over 35 games from May 1 through June 8 of this season. His batting average plummeted from a healthy .310 on April 30 to a dismal .214 by the end of the stretch, earning Morrison a spot on the bench. And it looks like the unspecified benching may have had exactly the type of impact that manager Ozzie Guillen had hoped.
"Lo Mo, hopefully he stays there [hitting so well]," Guillen said of Morrison. "He's swinging the bat really well."
The 24-year-old Morrison had another standout game on Tuesday night against the Red Sox, going 3-for-4 with a home run, two doubles and all five of the Marlins RBIs in the loss.
Morrison didn't feel any different in his plate approach during the game, but explained that he has been making better reads and is finally reaping the benefits in his at bats.
"My first at bat, I got behind [in the count] 3-1, was looking for a fastball middle and got a fastball middle. I made good contact and it went out," Morrison said of the offensive outburst. "[Pitchers] want to get ahead they don't want to get behind with runners in scoring position, so knowing that you're looking for a fastball. And he threw me a fastball."
Since breaking out of his horrid slump in a 4-2 loss to the Rays on June 10, Morrison has gone a combined 8-for-29 with a pair of home runs and seven RBIs — the same amount he had over the prior 35-game span. Yet Morrison refutes the idea that he's doing anything differently.
"I feel like I'm taking the same swings and doing the same things I've been doing all year," Morrison said. "I was just able to get into good counts and go from there. Hitters have to hit mistakes, and I was able to do that tonight."
Morrison's recent outburst is more than just hitter's luck, though. He's clearly seeing the ball better and reading situations with a much more keen sense of understanding. And it's showing in his on-field performance.
But the outfielder isn't concerned with his own offensive statistics if his team isn't winning games.
"I'm not happy because we lost," Morrison said of the loss. "Obviously the team comes first. We've got to start winning games and I think there’s always something I could do better."
Right now, Morrison couldn't be doing much more to help his team's cause. But the rest of the Marlins offense isn't reciprocating with their effort, and the pitching staff has proven underwhelming in recent outings.
If the Marlins hope to climb out of their sub-.500 hole and back to the top of the NL East, then they'll have to ride Morrison as far as he'll take them. Luckily for them, if his recent streak is any indication, then he's certainly up to the task.