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Saturday, Oct 20, 2018
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Rays morning after: Choi on an impressive pace

Ji-Man Choi doesn't want to get caught up in the numbers game.

In leading the Rays to a 3-0 win over the Rangers on Monday, Choi hit his eighth homer in 43 games/146 at-bats since getting called up.

That projects over a full season to roughly 30-plus homers, which would be a good thing.

Choi said he tries not to think about what might be.

"I keep telling myself to focus on every at-bat and do what I can do, do my best, and the results will follow," Choi said through a Korean interpreter on the phone."I just keep doing what I have to do at the plate."

Manager Kevin Cash raves about what Choi has done, and how he has done it.

"He's been hot, and now it seems like he's getting big hits for a couple weeks,' Cash said. "That tends to trickle throughout a season, certain guys get hot and certain guys get cold and you expect it to pick up.
"Right now he's just sitting in the middle of the lineup, getting big hits, really good at-bats. Even the hits he doesn't get he's lining balls all over the ballpark."

Choi was called up July 11, a couple weeks after being acquired from the Brewers for Brad Miller, who has since been released.

Cash has allowed himself to think what could be if Choi could keep up the performance over a full season.

"He's been outstanding," Cash said. "I know how you can project numbers and I think it's fair to say if he got consistent at-bats that you could see some pretty damaging numbers."

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