Results tagged ‘ Carlos Quentin ’

Great season comes to tough end

Although winning the World Series was our main goal, we
were happy with what we were able to accomplish. To win the division, after
being counted out by so many from the start, it was really a personal accomplishment
for every player on that team

Grif (Ken Griffey, Jr.) made that final out (Grant
Balfour strike out to end Game 4), and it was kind of weird for all of us. It
was disappointing to watch them celebrate on our home field because it made us
realize that the season really is over. No matter what we want, we can’t go
play baseball tomorrow.

You could tell our team was mentally and physically
drained, not that it’s an excuse. Every guy on our team gave it all we had. I
think we are all excited about moving on and seeing what we can do next year
after what we accomplished this year.

On a personal note, the highlights for me were just a
couple of home runs in decently big games, and that walk-off hit against
Baltimore (April 26, nightcap of a doubleheader). And of course, that last out
that got us the division title against Minnesota
(diving catch to end the American League Central tiebreaker on Sept. 29) was
big, even though the timed dive was questionable on my part.

Team-wise, celebrating together was cool when we captured
the division title after so many people counted us out.

The biggest disappointment was not advancing as far as we
wanted. But we had a lot of individuals who dealt with adversity and came above
it. We had a lot of guys overcome a lot of different things.

We missed Carlos (Quentin) a lot (out since beginning of
September with a fractured bone in his right wrist). He was a big part of our
team, and we all know what he’s capable of doing. It really stunk when he got
hurt, but we appreciate what he did. Carlos really carried us for a few months.

And you know what if people want to be negative about his
injury (slapping his right hand on the bat after fouling off a pitch from Cliff
Lee), it’s those people who are just looking for a reason to be negative and
have nothing better to do. He’s a great baseball player and a teammate, and
deserving of any recognition and accolades he receives.

Besides Carlos, Alexei (Ramirez) was probably the biggest
surprise for me this season. He went out every day and consistently got big
base hits and hit huge home runs for our team.

Now, I’m just going to start preparing for next season. I’m
going to work out with that same personal trainer, Todd Durkin, who I worked
with last offseason.

I’m going to do the same stuff I did to get ready for
Spring Training and do all I can to make the team. My goal is to play every day
in center field. If that’s with the White Sox, that would be great. But if it
ends up being with some other team, that’s great, too. I will be playing every
day in center field somewhere–that’s my main goal going into next season.

Starting over, down two

I
think the key for tomorrow is to pretend that the series is 0-0 and go one game
at a time. We take these two games at home and it’s a whole different series. That’s
what makes it good and bad about a five-game set. All we need to do is win one
game and let that carry over to the next.

On
the flight home Friday, guys were quiet for the most part, just playing cards.
Nothing too different from the norm. At this point in the season, it would be phony
for guys to be real [upset], and be down on themselves. That’s not how our team
is. We still got games left. The series definitely isn’t over. We’re not where
we want to be, but our guys have been down two and come back before.

You
definitely see it’s a little different on the Tampa
Bay side because there are so many
guys there who aren’t used to being in a winning organization. For them, this
is really exciting for them, which is great. We’re not so much different over
here. We’re just a lot of veteran guys who try to keep the same mindset and not
get too hyped up about it. I think it’s generally the same feeling, just a
different reaction and expression.

Everybody
gets along over here, but I could hang out with my best friend back home for
seven-plus months and we would butt heads. You’re going to butt heads during
the season. It’s just the way it is. You put people together for that much time,
and families butt heads, friends butt heads. But right now, we’re just playing
and trying to win baseball games. We’re all on the same page.

My
mom’s in town, so those are my plans for tonight. Hopefully, she’s taking it
easy on my credit card. She’s down somewhere on Michigan
Avenue.

I
don’t get to see my mom that much during the season because she works, but the
times that she does come out, I like to let her enjoy herself. Take the card
out, and surprisingly, she doesn’t do too much damage. I just tell her to have
fun, but I think like any mom, they do like to spoil themselves, but at the
same time, it’s their son and they don’t want to take advantage of their son.
Whatever she gets, hopefully she keeps it within reason.

Injuries
have definitely taken their toll. Would Carlos [Quentin] and Joe [Crede] and [Jose] Contreras have
helped us? Absolutely. But at the same time, I think there are some other guys
on the team who have stepped up and blossomed and done some really amazing
things this year. I don’t know if that could have happened under different
circumstances.