An eighth-round pick by the A’s in 2004, Leslie is batting .281 with Stockton in 116 games. He has 17 home runs and 87 RBIs.
Oakland Clubhouse: Who have scouts often compared you to at the major league level?
Myron Leslie: I’ve been compared before to a Cliff Floyd or a Derrek Lee. Those were some nice comparisons back in the day. I think a lot of that has to do with my build and the way I play the game. I don’t really try to compare myself to other people or pay much attention when people compare you to others. I try to play my game and control all I can control.
OC: Being a third baseman as you initially were, it seems like power is always associated with the position. That must have left a good impression on the organization.
Leslie: Yeah, I think it was something the organization wanted to see a little more of and something I wanted to see more out of myself. I knew home runs were something I could do. Driving the ball and getting the ball up in the air and getting some backspin on it instead of just driving it gap to gap was something I knew I could do. I’m glad I’ve been able to show that this season.
OC: You moved to the outfield around mid-June. Who approached you about the move and how did it come about?
Leslie: It was a way to add to my versatility and maybe provide a way for me to move on and be more of an asset to the team. Around the ballclub, Brian Snyder came down and we also had a couple of guys hurt. Some of us were kind of thrown to the wolves by having to learn on the slide.
OC: Obviously your bat hasn’t been affected at all!
Leslie: Yeah, I try to separate my offense and defense. I try to take pride in both of them. Moving to the outfield is a lot different and it’s something new right now. It’s fun to learn new things and try to do something completely different. When it comes to playing there, I’ve tried to have a consistent approach both offensively and defensively. I don’t think it’s overbearing.
OC: How would you sum up your season overall? You’re batting a few points higher than last year.
Leslie: Starting out in Spring Training, I swung the bat pretty well. I was looking forward to getting off to a good start to the year. I kind of struggled with my swing the first six weeks of the season and afterward, I started to come on strong and have stayed consistent with my approach and my swing.
OC: Now that we’re getting down to the final weeks of the season, do you have any goals left for 2006?
Leslie: I try to stay within what I can control, no matter what I do. I can’t control whether I go up or not. I just want to continue to drive in runs and numbers-wise, maybe make a push toward 100 RBIs. I want to finish the season strong and develop some momentum going into next season. Last year, I feel I may have been worn out toward the end of the year.