Catching prospect Johnny Monell is a better player these days in part because he's a better listener.
"I'm really open to learning," he said. "It's something I was stubborn about when I was younger."
The hottest hitter in the Giants' camp, Monell isn't afraid to seek advice from anyone who can make him better. Thursday, he gave a laundry list of people who have helped him, including Pudge Rodriguez and Jeff Kent, who offered tips on catching and hitting, respectively.
He also mentioned Buster Posey, J.T. Snow, Giants coaches Joe Lefebvre and Billy Hayes and, most of all, his dad. Johnny Monell Sr. was a longtime pro ballplayer, making it as far as Triple-A with the Mets. His son said they speak on a daily basis.
"We both know the situation," Monell the younger said. "Opportunities are hard to come by. Only a certain amount of players get to the major leagues."
Monell is 9-for-16 and started Thursday in place of Hector Sanchez, who was scratched with a sore shoulder. If Sanchez remains sore when resuming a throwing program in a couple of days, he'll have an MRI exam.


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