Beltran concerned with timing, not stats

Beltran concerned with timing, not stats

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- It has been a long time since Carlos Beltran gave much thought to his Spring Training statistics, but it still feels great to square up a ball and hit it well.

Beltran's first hit in a Yankees uniform carried over the right-field wall, a solo shot off Todd Redmond in the third inning of New York's 8-2 Grapefruit League victory over Toronto on Sunday.

"As long as I physically feel good and I'm healthy, that's what I care about the most," Beltran said. "The timing will come: keep working in the cage, keep taking extra BP, extra hitting. You keep facing pitchers, and live pitching also will make it better."

"You want to see guys swinging the bat well, obviously," manager Joe Girardi said. "It's really important at the end, but it doesn't really matter sometimes. You can be swinging the bat horrible at the end of Spring Training and get off to a hot start, and vice versa, but it's always nice to see."

A switch-hitter, Beltran said that his timing always seems to come faster from the left side of the plate than the right. His homer on Sunday, the second of a back-to-back duo with Eduardo Nunez, came off a right-hander.

"You face more righties than lefties, that's why you've got to go to the cage," he said. "When you're a switch-hitter, you have to keep things balanced. There's a lot of work that has to be done, but at the same time, you've got to do it."

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.