This week I had the opportunity to speak with Phillies third base prospect Travis "Moose" Mattair. Moose was a member of the Lakewood BlueClaws team that won the 2009 South Atlantic League Championship. The 21-year-old righty hitter had an up and down season, in 2009. He batted .236 in 126 games last year. I asked Moose several questions about his offseason, how he'll bounce back and plenty more. Check it out...
What types of cardio and/or weight training do you do to stay in shape during the offseason?
At the end of the season, this past year, I sat down with my strength and conditioning coordinator and we went over what we both thought I needed to improve on the most! That, pretty much, was overall strength. So he put together an awesome workout program that put all of that together. He split up the days for me- upper body lifts, lower body lifts, total body lifts, and agility work! I took that and went to a personal trainer back home with Advanced Fitness Solution workout facility. So between the 3 of us we put together a conglomeration of a workout program! It had me lifting 4 days a week and working on footwork twice a week. Sundays are always left to myself. The one day off is needed.
Describe your efforts to keep your hitting or fielding from getting rusty during the down time.
The offseason just isn't a time from keeping fielding and hitting from getting rusty..This is the time where you improve your skills so, when you come into spring training, you are ready to roll! I have been very blessed with hitting facilities. When I was in (my home state of) Washington, I had a facility not 2 minutes from my house, that I had full access to. I am living in West Virginia right now and I made a connection with Extra Innings hitting facility, who has been more than welcoming to me, letting me come and hit when I need to get my work in. Being in cold environments it is a lot tougher to work on fielding. You have to get creative in batting cages to work on glove work and footwork. But besides that, I don't normally get to step foot on a field till spring training! It's necessary to get to spring training a few days early just for that reason.
What other types of training routines have you been implementing to be ready for spring training?
I am doing everything in my power to get ready for spring training. I never want to look back and say, "If I would have worked that much harder", or,"If I would have done this or that, I would have been ready." Nope, I never want to have that question, so I am doing everything I can to be ready! I am feeling good, I feel I am ready.
Are there any new addictions for you this offseason (food, TV, online, otherwise)?
I got the iPhone! It has changed my life, all in the good! It is unreal, a computer in my pocket, loving it! Haha. And I just got the new mac book, but I haven't really got to use it to its full potential yet! So, basically I just don't know what to do with all this technology!
You are expected to play with high A level Clearwater this coming season. What do you look forward to most in Florida after playing the past two seasons in New Jersey with Lakewood?
Every step you take along this journey is exciting! I am excited to move up the ladder. Lakewood, the fans there, the staff, the ball park, they gave me so much, including a ring that I cant wait to get in spring training. However, I am very excited to move on and up in my career. I am excited not to have the travel we had in the South Atlantic League. The park is beautiful. I am excited to get in a new routine there. The past year I was in the same routine, so it will be nice to find a new routine, in a new area, and a new park!
How do you feel about the news that your manager with Lakewood last season, Dusty Wathan, will be managing in Clearwater next season?
I am very excited to have Dusty managing again! He is what some call a player's coach. He demands a lot but, in the same sense, you want to play for him. He is fun to play for.
When the news of the Roy Halladay trade hit and "the other Travis" (Mattair's 2009 BlueClaws teammate Travis D'Arnaud) was dealt to the Toronto system, what was your reaction?
Crazy! It makes you realize that our job is still a business! I am most likely going to be playing Travis this upcoming season, and he is so smart that he knows the ins and outs of our swings and approach. So he will have that going for him, when we go up against him. When the trade was in the process of happening, we sent texts back and forth. I just told him good luck and can't wait to see him in spring training. He is a stud he will do awesome no matter where he is. That aside, Ruben Amaro Jr. and the staff continue to do an awesome job for OUR club getting what we need to make yet another run for the World Series next year!
What has been your favorite movie that you've seen this offseason?
I really liked the Blind Side! A feel good movie, great story!
With NFL playoffs in motion, which teams are your picks to make it to the Super Bowl?
The Seattle Seahawks are going to win it! Okay, I know they aren't in it, but they're my team. Not a great season out of them! Ha. I want to see the Vikings and the Saints go far.
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