It seems Dan Uggla was told during Spring Training that he had astigmatism, but the threw the contacts away after just a couple of days. Since then, the Atlanta Braves second baseman has spent his time ducking away from curveballs and just not seeing the ball well. On Thursday, Uggla finally went to the eye doctor and was fitted for new contact lenses, braves.com reports.
If the new contacts don't work, Uggla may opt for LASIK surgery.
"I just know that I need LASIK or contacts," Uggla said. "So we're going to go with contacts first. They felt great all day, and I'm excited about it. I'm excited about hopefully being able to see the ball better."
The encouraging or disturbing thing, depending on how it's viewed, is that he's tried to battle through it since last season.
"I guess now looking back, I kind of noticed it last year," Uggla said. "It was harder to focus, even out in the field. This year I was just trying to battle through it, thinking it's going to come like it always does, not thinking, 'Maybe you're not seeing the ball.'"
Uggla has hit .194 with 13 homers this year and .189 in his last 166 games. Uggla holds the top two highest strikeout totals in Braves history with 156 in 2011 and 168 last season. This year, he's on pace for 201 strikeouts.
"It's just been building," Uggla said. "I haven't been able to pull the trigger on a lot of the pitches I've made my money on and done a lot of damage on. For me to not be able to even pull the trigger on any of those pitches for this amount of time and to also be ducking out of the way of so many pitches that are strikes, my eyes aren't telling me the right thing. So I've got to do something."
Uggla sat out the Braves' loss to the Mets Thursday while adjusting to his contacts. He missed batting practice after Fredi Gonzalez said he was excused for a personal issue.
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