Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Fightins Quotables: Legg and Kingery interview excerpts

This week with the Double-A Reading Fightins making a stop in Trenton, I had the opportunity to chat with manager Greg Legg and surging second baseman Scott Kingery about several topics.  Primarily, both men spoke of Kingery's recent success at the plate (click here for that article), but Legg also talked to me about some other members of his roster including outfielder Andrew Pullin.  Kingery offered thoughts on a few other topics including a funny jab that a teammate took at him for being so good that it's gotten boring.

Read ahead for those exclusive quotes from Legg and Kingery.

Greg Legg, image- Jay Floyd
-I asked Legg about outfielder Andrew Pullin, who has been an excellent offensive performer since he made his Double-A debut last year...

He can hit.  He comes to the park and he knows how to hit and he's got some pop, extra base hits, he can leave the yard and he can hit anybody's fastball.  

-I inquired with Legg about his Fightins pitching staff having a collection of hurlers with high ERA's (five starting pitchers with marks over five, two of those are over six)...

Well, the guys are battling hard.  They're competing well.  That's all you can ask.  Drew (Anderson)'s coming on and (Brandon) Leibrandt's pitching good games for us.  (John) Richy kept us in the game (Monday) night and then they put a three-spot on him in the fifth, you know.  He's a pitch away from getting out of that.  And (Tyler) Viza's coming on, working on some things, so I look for them to take us deeper into games.  

-I followed up asking if he's pleased with the output from the bullpen...

Oh, yeah.  Our bullpen's done a great job.  Through the I guess it's the first 39 games they've been outstanding.

-With certain players, including 2014 third round draft pick outfielder Aaron Brown not seeing a lot of action and lefty batting first baseman Kyle Martin sitting against a left-handed pitcher, I asked if it's hard to get everyone playing time, or if Legg thought that each player is playing as much as he deserves...

No, we're trying to get everybody in the ballgame, let them contribute.  A lot of times we're working with guys in the cages and things like that, but no, I'm not matching up.  They're all getting their chance to play.  Harold (Martinez)'s been hurt, and we got him back in the game tonight.

Scott Kingery, image- Jay Floyd
-I asked Kingery if there was a lot of excitement surrounding his success at the plate coming from his teammates...

It's funny, 'cause (Sunday), when I hit my first home run (on Sunday) Harold (Martinez) came up to me and he said you're starting to get on Andrew Pullin's level.  It's not even exciting when you hit home runs anymore.  I got a good laugh out of that.

-Kingery discussed feeling worn down last year and the benefits of spending time in the Arizona Fall League after his first full season in the pro ranks...

Well, first of all, when I got here last year, I think it was (because it was) my first full professional season, I got pretty worn down.  You know, it got to me a little bit and obviously, going to the Fall League and seeing great pitching there- obviously, the pitching's good here, then going there and having even better pitching there, it was good for me.  It was good to get more experience and to get more at bats.  

-I asked Kingery about playing in front of the fans in Reading, who grew up as true Phillies fans...

That's awesome.  I experienced it some last year and they pack the place on weekends.  And as summer's approaching, they're going to be packing it a lot more.  It's good to have those guys on your side.  You want to do good for them, get some wins for them and they're really excited and they're engaged in the game, so it makes it a lot better to play. 

-I inquired if Kingery and the team were already thinking of getting back to the playoffs for a second straight season...

Definitely!  I think this is a really exciting team and I think we have everything it takes to get back to the playoffs and make a run at it and we struggled a little bit out of the gate- I think we started 0-and-3 and, you know, after that we started getting some good chemistry and started seeing what we need to do to win some ball games.  And from there, it's been rolling and we've been playing good baseball.  So, yeah, I definitely think this is an exciting team. 
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