More on Gregg

You might have noticed I have a feature story up on on new reliever Kevin Gregg, who will be competing with Koji Uehara for the closer role. You can read the full story here, but I thought I’d pass along some of the extra stuff that didn’t make it in….

[about electing to stay in the AL East]
“There’s a lot of good teams over here, but it’s all the same. I got to do my job. They can hurt you in the AL West or the NL Central, you can get hurt over there, too. [I] just continue to do my thing, make my pitches. It didn’t concern me what division I was in. I didn’t really weigh the fact, I really didn’t pick one team over the other because of the division they were in. That was a non-factor.

I mean really I think if I make my pitches I get everybody out. That’s kind of the way I approach it, and what division I’m in I really don’t care.”

[On the game at Camden Yards last season when Gregg walked three guys and had some choice words for Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston when he came to take him out of the game]
“I take my job seriously. That was a situation where I didn’t agree with his decision, it’s his team he can make his decisions but my job was to get the last three outs of the game. And there’s times where you are not going to be on and it’s not going to be a 1,2,3 inning, you are not [always] going to cruise right though, you might get into trouble.”

[on his control issues]
“It’s an interesting thing because people say control is my biggest downfall, but control is also my biggest strength. You will see as the year goes on, when I miss I don’t miss by much. I never give in, that’s my theory.

I’m never going to give him and just throw balls down the middle, I’m going to sit there and go corner to corner until I win. That’s just the bottom line. Do I walk more guys? Yeah. But it’s not because I’m scattering balls to the backstop. Ill be right around the corners consistently.
[on his time in the As system, where he was passed over]
“I had to stick it out. I asked for my release for them, they wouldn’t give it  to me. They said ‘We are not going to release you, but to us you are not a big league pitcher.’ So I said forget it, I’m going to try another organization and see what happens. When I was [with Anaheim] I was in the big leagues within a year.”

[on his sport glasses]
“With contacts, there’s a lot of variables that can go wrong with the dirt or the wind. [With] glasses you don’t have that.

In the Minor leagues I couldn’t afford to go get glasses and do all that stuff, so I didn’t. As you get older your vision gets worse. It was getting to the point, where I couldn’t see [the catcher’s] signs, I used to guess. Then it was like, ‘Ok, forget about this,  I’ll just get glasses.’ It works.”

[on having to earn the closer’s role]
“For me it’s really the same thing I’ve gone through for a while now. So the biggest thing is to go out there and show what I can do. My experience, my past dictates. They know what I can do. [I’m] just going to go out and continue doing that. [Manager Buck Showalter] can make the decision of what he wants to do.”

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