GOODYEAR, Ariz. - A year ago, Todd Frazier was fighting just to stay in the majors. In 2013, Frazier is penciled in as the Cincinnati Reds starting third baseman.
And Frazier says it hasn't changed him a bit.
"My dad was always on my case about that, 'don't be complacent. Understand that you're that guy, but you've got to prove it on the field,'" Frazier said.
Dusty Baker says Frazier has to do two difficult things if he wants to elevate his game: Speed up and slow down.
Speed up in the field, but slow down at the plate.
Frazier proved he's got what it takes at the plate following the injury to Scott Rolen and the subsequent loss of Joey Votto after that, filling some big offensive needs for the Reds to stay competitive. In 2012, Frazier posted an average of .273, with 19 home runs, and 67 RBIs in 2012.
No one expects Frazier to be like Rolen with his glove on the hot corner, but Frazier said he knows defense will keep him on the field.
"It's getting to that backhand ball, not letting them advance a base and understanding that first step is the biggest," Frazier said. "Me and Chris Speier are going to be working on that all Spring Training."
9 On Your Side sports director John Popovich contributed to this report.
9 On Your Side will continue to post more stories from Goodyear, Arizona all week. For more on Reds Spring Training, go to http://live.wcpo.com/Event/Reds_Spring_Training_coverage .