Saturday, January 15, 2011
Five More Minutes With Adam LaRoche
Question: Did you have it in the back of your mind that this was where you wanted to be? Was it stressful waiting for a deal to be struck?
LaRoche: A little bit. Anytime, financially or however long you have been around the game, you are sitting at home unemployed--you wonder how long it is going to take. Where are we going? Let’s get something done. It never got to that point, but it definitely got to where I told Mike (Milchin), my agent, that if this (coming to Washington) was a real possibility let’s move on it because with the five or six options--whether it was a one-year deal or a three-year deal, this was where I wanted to go and luckily got it done.
Question: You alluded to it in the press conference, what do you see that Mike Rizzo is doing here? He’s hasn’t been able to land the pitcher he wanted, but how do you see the direction of this club heading?
LaRoche: Well I can tell you how I saw it playing against these guys for a few years. And that was it was pretty comfortable coming in here to play a series. It’s no disrespect at all, as I was on The Pirates for a couple of years and it was the same way. There was no fear of any team coming in (to play Washington). Last year in Arizona, a little bit different story. For the most part, we had our work cut out for us--no matter who we were playing. You kind of lose that edge, especially when you are playing at home, where a team comes in and says: we better strap it on this is going to be a tough series. You are automatically in the drivers seat. So that’s where they (Washington) want to end up here. And every team I have ever been on--you have that attitude from the get-go. Guys who say: yeah, we lost tonight, but who cares because we are going to win the next four out of five. You are just that confident.
Question: How much does that feeling increase now since you are back in the NL East?
LaRoche: Well, there is no question that to be successful here you are going up against a couple of really good teams that consistently put out and field good teams. It won’t be easy, but I think you have got to start somewhere. They’ve obviously done that this year, being at the bottom of the division. They are ready to make the move.
Question: Do you know Desmond, Espinosa and Zimmerman?
LaRoche: Zim, yeah, because of playing against him. Espinosa, not at all. I’ve seen Desmond play short enough to know that he’s really good, an incredible talent. How old is he?
LaRoche: He’s an incredible talent, especially at shortstop. That is a position where it’s just trial and error. For those guys, it’s finding out what works, what works for you. And from what I’ve seen, the potential is unbelievable over there.
Question: You are a hunter, known for using a bow. Are you looking to find out if there are other hunters on the team?
LaRoche: That will be my first search in spring training to find out who are the fellow rednecks on the team (good amount of laughter). That’s good to know as I’ve been pretty public about my love for hunting and being outside. It’s always good. There always seems to be a ton of ballplayers that do that, so it’s good to run into them.
Question: Adam, any progress with Andy (Adam’s brother and former teammate in Pittsburgh)? Is there a possibility he could come here and would he accept a backup role if he did come here?
LaRoche: I would hope that would be a possibility. Obviously, it’s not my decision. I can put in a good word for him anytime. But I don’t know. That was one of the best years of my career, other than losing as much as we did, but seeing him across the diamond and share a locker right next to him was unbelievable. If that could ever happen again, we would both do everything we can. He’s in some talks with a few different clubs, three American League teams. Again, he’s getting up there a little bit in age to where he needs to get some money where he can. But also young enough to still want to get in there and be an everyday player. So he’s kind of right on the bubble and needs some good things to happen.
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