23 Feb Getting to Know NY Mets Ace Pitcher Jacob DeGrom
Mets ace Jacob deGrom talked to the media for the first time last week from Port St. Lucie. The two-time Cy Young Award winner talked about the Mets busy offseason, Steve Cohen, and his future.
Full Name: Jacob DeGrom
Born: June 19, 1988
Major League Debut: May 15th, 2014 vs NY Yankees
2021 Salary: $33,500,000
Hobbies/Interests: Hunting & Fishing
Favorite thing to do on an off day:
I enjoy the big city; I’m from a small town. I like walking in Central Park and other parts of the city.
Favorite Ballpark: Right here, Citi Field. It’s a good park to pitch in.
Boyhood idol and favorite athlete:
Chipper Jones of the Braves. I grew up a Braves fan and Chipper lived near me. I looked up to him.
Biggest Influence for your career?
My dad, growing up he would always be having a catch or be hitting with me. I was always working with him, great work ethic.
Favorite team growing up: Atlanta Braves.
Favorite athletes today: LeBron James and Phil Mickelson.
Who were your favorite pitchers growing up?
Again being a Braves fan, I liked Smoltz, Glavine and Maddux. I really liked Maddux, with his location and stuff, he wasn’t overpowering but threw pitches where he want- ed to every time.
Meal I enjoy most: A good steak dinner
Drive: The opportunity to put on a big league uniform every day is awesome. Many people dream of that, but very few get to do it. I am thankful every day I get to put on that uniform.
First Job: I worked in a fernery with a few guys I knew. Most people have no idea what that is, but its working in a specialized garden for the cultivation and display of ferns.
Best advice you’ve ever received: Trust yourself and your abilities.
Most Embarrassing Professional Moment: Walking out to pitcher’s mound to pitch and wearing the wrong hat, I was wearing our batting practice hat.
You seem to be very happy going into spring training this year, why is that?
I’m definitely more optimistic at camp than ever before. Looking
around at the names in the locker room, it’s very exciting. Hopefully
we can go out there and win a World Series. As for players, that’s
always the expectation. Looking at the pieces we have added, we
definitely want to get back to the World Series. I feel almost better
then when I first came into the league. First coming up, I was
constantly working on my delivery. I think I figured out a routine to
try to stay as smooth as I can, and I feel good. I think I can compete
at this level for quite a bit longer.
What are your goals for this season?
Ultimately, the team goal is to win the World Series. The pieces we
added, it’s going to be a huge plus. You still set personal goals and
my goal is to win another Cy Young.
How much longer do you think you can play at the level you’ve been at
for the last few years?
You never know how long you get to play this game, and like I said
before, every time I’m able to put this uniform on I’m thankful for
that. I wouldn’t say the window is closing. I’d hope not. I definitely
like the direction our team is going in. Definitely want to win a
World Series here in the next couple years.
After your 2022 season, you have an opt out in your contract. What are
I have definitely enjoyed my time here and signed long-term here. I
haven’t really thought too much about the opt-out. The goal is to go
out there and perform and then when that time comes make that
decision. One thing I think that is really cool is whenever somebody
spends their entire career with one team. You don’t see it happen a
whole lot anymore, so it’s definitely something I have thought about
and I guess we just have to see when that time comes.
Whats the hardest part about preparing for a game?
Calming myself down. The day of the game I get nervous and I’m tired. But once I get on the field I’m usually good to go.