Mesoraco struggling to find groove at plate

Mesoraco struggling to find groove at plate

Mesoraco struggling to find groove at plate
SAN FRANCISCO -- The first full season for Reds rookie catcher Devin Mesoraco has been a mixed result. While Mesoraco has improved behind the plate while working primarily with starters Mike Leake and Homer Bailey, he entered Thursday batting just .198 this season.

"Obviously, I'm not performing the way that I think that I can and the way I would like to help my team," said Mesoraco, who has four home runs and nine RBIs. "It's definitely a process. I'm learning a lot and just trying to improve myself and improve my swing. It's not fun to go out there every day and not be successful."

Mesoraco was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts in Wednesday's 8-4 loss to the Brewers. The former first-round pick struggled as a hitter in his initial pro seasons before taking off in 2010-11.

The 24-year-old was also playing every day in the Minors, something he doesn't do now with Ryan Hanigan being Cincinnati's primary catcher. Lack of at-bats is not an excuse that Mesoraco is using, however.

"I think it's just going to take time," Mesoraco said. "Playing the amount I'm playing doesn't have anything to do with how I'm performing."

Mesoraco, who has caught his last three attempted basestealers, has found grooves with Leake and Bailey after a slow start. Catching and defense remain his top priorities, which was what the club wanted when the season started.

"You have to stay focused on the task at hand, which is trying to get the pitchers through the game," Mesoraco said. "I think I'm going to have a whole lot more effect on the game behind the plate calling pitches and trying to get those guys through the game than the four at-bats I do get from batting in front of the pitcher. That's my main focus. I'm working hard it and learning every day."