WASHINGTON (AP) — Miami Marlins manager Mike Redmond has a discomforting thought for teams trying to pitch to Giancarlo Stanton.
"He's still a young major league hitter and that's maybe scary to think about, what's he's been able to accomplish in such a short time and that there's still room to get better," Redmond said. "And when he continues to swing at strikes and gets into favorable counts, man. Wow. Watch out."
"As much damage as he thinks he's doing now, he could do even more damage," he said.
The 24-year-old Stanton entered Tuesday as the National League leader in home runs (15) and RBIs (49), and was ninth in batting average (.316).
He didn't get a chance to improve those numbers Tuesday night. Miami's game at Washington was rained out and no makeup date was announced — the Marlins return to the nation's capital Sept. 26-28.
Stanton homered and had three hits in Monday's 3-2 win, improving his career average at Nationals Park to .333, with 14 home runs and 27 RBIs.
Stanton was limited to 116 games last season because of a strained right hamstring. Redmond said his right fielder is healthy and energized, and is hitting in a lineup stabilized by acquisitions such as Casey McGehee. The Miami cleanup man is batting .426 with runners in scoring position.
The Marlins as a team are hitting .261, second in the National League.
"We all understand what type of hitter we are," Stanton said. "Everyone's getting on. I'm getting on for McGehee, (Derek) Dietrich and (Christian) Yelich are getting on me."
Stanton is hitting 51 points above his career .265 average.
"His at-bats have been really good. He's made adjustments," Redmond said. "It all stems from pitch selection. When he's swinging at pitches in the zone, and taking his walks and not expanding the zone, he's going to get pitches to hit and when he does that, he's hit some bullets."
The only hits Tuesday night came in batting practice, as the game was postponed shortly after its scheduled start time because of a downpour accompanied by lightning.