On Green Monster and avoiding a quake
A's Barton leaves his mark inside the big wall at Fenway
Here are some of the notable quotes from around Major League Baseball this week:
"I found a blank spot [to sign], and that's something I'll remember the rest of my life."
-- Daric Barton on signing his name on the inside wall of the Green Monster at Fenway Park. (Oakland Tribune)
"That's what I signed up for. You get a chance to be a hero or a failure. I always like to choose the hero option. It's more lucrative, and fans like it."
-- Brian Wilson on his role as Giants closer. (San Francisco Chronicle)
"This is the first step in a long journey, hopefully. It is a big one. All those practices and all those long drives, it pays dividends in situations like this. ... I am at a shortage for words just trying to explain what this feels like right now."
-- Top prospect Pedro Alvarez on being called up to the Pirates this week from Triple-A. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
"I looked up on the Jumbotron and saw my family jumping up and down. It was a great feeling. It means everything. All those times my parents brought me to Little League practice and the batting cages and all that stuff paid off. It's a great feeling."
-- Chad Huffman, Yankees rookie outfielder, on his first Major League hit Sunday against Houston, which is near his hometown of Missouri City, Texas. (New York Daily News)
"I didn't feel a thing, but I did wonder why everything I was trying to throw low and away was up and in."
-- Shawn Camp, Blue Jays reliever, joking about the small earthquake that hit Southern California on Monday night during the Jays' game against San Diego. (Toronto Sun)
"You think I can do that?"
-- Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano, wondering if he could hit the famed Budweiser Building across Waveland Avenue with a long home run. (Chicago Sun-Times)
"He's been just an unbelievable pickup. And he's played not only good offense, he's played great defense. He made a great play today to [prevent] a hit, and he just keeps swinging. He's a tough out. He's got a great eye at the plate, and he's a tough out."
--Braves manager Bobby Cox on first baseman Troy Glaus. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
"I tell people all the time either you have faith and believe in yourself and your abilities or you don't. It's a game of failures. Your natural reaction is to doubt when you fail in anything in life. There were times when my mind would wander, but I can say I know I've been through worse in life than just the struggles in baseball, and it's all about perspective."
-- Chris Coghlan, Marlins outfielder, on having confidence in your abilities. (South Florida Sun-Sentinel)
"This year, we counted on him being one of our starters, but any time someone asked about him leading the staff, my answer was always he wouldn't be afraid to, but it's not fair to ask him to right now."
--Dodgers manager Joe Torre on expectations for 22-year-old Clayton Kershaw. (Los Angeles Times)
"It was unbelievable. The Blackhawk guys coming here, there was so much energy. I can't remember that much energy. I guess I'd have to go back to 2001 and the World Series to get that feel. It was awesome, really special."
-- Ted Lilly, discussing the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks' visit to Wrigley Field on Sunday night. (Chicago Sun-Times)
"That's the King, you know what I'm saying? That's how he pitches. I faced the guy I don't know how many times with Oakland and Texas and never got a hit. I know what he's capable of doing. He can cut anyone up."
-- Milton Bradley on Mariners right-hander Felix Hernandez. (Seattle Times)
"One thing they both have is an unbelievable work ethic. It's like neither one of them is ever satisfied. First, you've got to have the talent that God gave you. And they've got plenty of that. I think they just strive to be better than everyone else. And, obviously, they've got great hand-eye coordination. Out of this world. It's fun playing with Albert, and it was fun playing with Ichiro."
-- Ryan Franklin, discussing teammate Albert Pujols and Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
"I'm not out there thinking about trying to go six innings and give up a run or two. That's not what it's about as much as thinking about that next batter you're about to face. Even in the dugout, I'll be thinking, 'How do I want to approach this next batter?' And I'll just go from there."
-- Kevin Slowey, explaining his approach to pitching. (St. Paul Pioneer Press)
"Anytime you face a new team, it's to my advantage because they really haven't seen you. If I pitched in the National League and faced these guys more times than just once every couple of years, it would be different."
-- Mark Buehrle, who is 21-6 with a 3.40 ERA against NL teams in his career. (Chicago Sun-Times)
"Regardless of what happens, I like who I am, like what I've become. I'm maturing, and I've grown up a lot in a life sense. In the game, in baseball as a pitcher, I'm not anywhere near being satisfied. I've been given a tremendous opportunity, and I can't mess this up."
-- Charlie Morton, Pirates pitcher, on maturing as a person. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
"We get a lead going into the eighth or ninth inning, and we feel the game is over."
-- Catcher Alex Avila on Tigers closer Jose Valverde. (Detroit Free Press)
"He interjects life into the team, but that's his personality. That's how he is every day. I always tell him he needs a microphone and a TV camera to follow him around everywhere, and he'd have a hit show."
-- Mark Reynolds commenting on D-backs catcher Miguel Montero. (The Arizona Republic)
"What goes unnoticed is the fact of how much influence he has on us young guys in the clubhouse. I've learned so much from him in the year and a half I've been able to be with him. I know for a fact that I'm a far better player, at least at understanding the game, than I was prior to getting [to San Diego]. He's a big asset for us."
-- Tony Gwynn Jr. commenting on teammate David Eckstein positively influences younger Padres. (MLB.com)
"We discuss what we've read. There's no testing, but I do want to know about their comprehension and what they retain ... want them to see beneath the surface, to understand the human condition and actions that happen. ... The thing I hope for them is that they have depth, that they relate well to all walks of life, all social classes and ethnic backgrounds. I want them to assimilate and empathize, [do] more than just tolerate."
-- R.A. Dickey on reading with his children and the values he hopes to instill in them. (MLB.com)
"There will be a point where we just shut him down for a while or really minimize his innings. We want him to pitch in September, so some of that shutdown may be before September."
--Nationals manager Jim Riggleman on the club's plans for rookie sensation Stephen Strasburg. (The Washington Post)
"It's weird because sometimes it feels like I haven't been gone, and other times it feels like I've been gone for a number of years."
--Jeff Suppan, who returned to St. Louis to pitch for the Cardinals on Tuesday night. His last start for the Cardinals came during the 2006 postseason. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
"I'm feeling really good right now. I'm seeing the ball a lot better, staying back a lot better, but I have to keep working. It's a battle; it's a war for me right now, trying to go out and do my best and survive."
-- Carlos Lee on coming around at the plate. (Houston Chronicle)
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.