Five most improved players in 2013

A former catcher, Josh Donaldson has transitioned to the hot corner very well and kept hitting. AP Photo/Tony Avelar

Every year there's always a group of players who reward their general managers' or signing scouts' belief in them. Struggling and failure is a fact of life in baseball, but for the players who fight through it, redemption is that much sweeter.

There are a lot of players who have improved this season, such as Justin Upton and Matt Moore, but the difference between them and the five below is that they were expected to be good.

So let's take a look at the five most improved players in 2013 and examine what they did to overcome their struggles.

1. Josh Donaldson | 3B | Oakland Athletics

After watching Donaldson in Oakland this past week, I was convinced he’s the most improved player I’ve seen this season. He’s always possessed raw power since the Chicago Cubs drafted him in the compensation round of the 2007 draft out of Auburn. But he has always showed holes at the plate, and many wondered how much he would hit. So his eight home runs this season aren’t necessarily a surprise, but his ridiculous power to right-center definitely raised my eyebrows. What impressed me the most was his ability to hit pitches on both sides of the plate. If you pitch him away he goes away, pitch him in and he’ll pull it.