Thanks to a mid-season trade between the Miami Marlins and the Tampa Bay Rays organizations, Picayune product Braxton Lee gets to come home to the Coast much more often than before.
"It is very nice being able to see all of my friends and family," Lee said before a game between his Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp and the Biloxi Shuckers at MGM Park. "They always get the same exact sections each time, and it's nice that I got traded because with Montgomery I could only come back here twice, but now with the Jumbo Shrimp, this will be like my third and then fourth time coming back. I'll get to see them a lot more which is really nice, and it's fun being back home an hour closer to where I live."
Entering Wednesday's game between the Jumbo Shrimp and the Shuckers, Lee led the Southern League in hits with 117 and boasted an impressive .317 batting average, good for third-best in the league. The former PRCC and Ole Miss slugger said it's his focus on the opposing pitchers' fastball that allows him to succeed.
"That's mainly it, fastball, fastball, and I can react to whatever other pitch they throw," Lee said. "(Just) sticking to my same approach day in and day out to hit that fastball. I'm a lead-off guy, so I'm not trying to do a ton of damage with the bat. I'm just trying to get on base so my other guys that do all the damage can hit me in."
With Lee boasting one of the better bats in the Minors, he believes his approach at the plate could lead him to an eventual Major League Baseball berth.
"That's the guy I've been since I was 10 years old," Lee said of his time dating back to the Maroon Tide and even before. "I've been that little lead-off guy that is just a good contact hitter and hits the ball around the field. I believe that, along with a little bit more, will excel me to the next level, and so on. That's what I have to stick with, being the person that I am."
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