Jermaine Brock, a speedy outfielder drafted by the Mariners in the sixth round of the 2004 June…
Dobbs Appreciative of Bigs, Vows to Return
What was going through your mind in your first major league at bat? And what was going through it when you smacked the Bob Wickman offering over the wall and rounded the bases? Has it hit you yet?
All I wanted to do was make solid contact, hit the ball hard somewhere and if it falls in for a hit great! I was thinking stay calm and relaxed and to not try and do too much, stay within myself and treat it like any other at-bat. Once I hit the fastball he threw me I knew I had hit it hard, I just had no clue it was going to go over the wall. It was weird, I knew I hit it well, I didn't know if I had hit it well enough to get out of the yard. Once I saw it was going out, I just kept my head down and rounded the bases like any other home run, we were still losing so it was bittersweet. After the game it hit me and I felt pretty good about how I handled myself. It was quite a moment in my career thus far.
How did the month in the big leagues compare to the years you spent in the minors? What were the biggest differences in day-to-day life, travel, fame, skill-level, etc?
The month I spent in the big leagues was awesome, I can't compare it to any or all of the years I have spent in the minors. It is so fun to play in the big leagues, it almost seems like a dream. Everything is perfect, from the fields to the batting practice balls. Being in the big leagues has made me realize I don't want to spend another second in the minors. I will do whatever it takes to get back to the big leagues and stay there for as long as the Lord allows. Day-to-day life was a bit different, hotels, ballparks, friends and family coming to watch, and playing against guys I have watched on T.V. and admired hit me pretty hard. I realized that I had gotten to the same level in baseball as all of these other superstars and there is some feeling of satisfaction. In the big leagues everyone has about the same skill level other than your superstars. Everyone is entirely professional and nice. The travel is a lot easier since we would leave right after the game was over and get on our own plane with plenty of room and food. It is a luxury to be in the big leagues, the treatment you receive is the best any professional could ask for and beyond.
Were you happy with how you played in a M's uniform? What would you have liked to done better at?
Yes I was, I did the best I could with the time I was given. I am so appreciative to the organization and coaches for giving me the opportunity to play and contribute. I would have liked to have hit better like I know I can and how I have in my years in the minor leagues, but hopefully I will have another chance to do so.
When Ichiro hit No. 257, I'll never forget seeing that picture of everyone at first base congratulating him. The one person in that photo who stands out, for whatever reason, is you. You just look so happy for the guy. What was it like, as Ichiro's teammate, being a part of that? Is it something you'll always remember and value?
It was an amazing moment to be a part of! Ichiro is such a great guy and baseball player, and getting to know him in that short month made me realize how great a hitter he really is. I was extremely happy for him, to accomplish that feat and be there as a part of it as a team mate of his was a memory I will cherish forever. It is something I will be able to tell my children and grandchildren about. I felt fortunate to be there to witness No. 257.
What other experiences will you remember from your first month as a big leaguer? Edgar's final days? Learning under Molitor?
Dobbs: Definately Edgar's retirement was as touching as anything I have witnessed or been a part of. To realize that the end of a Legacy was occuring in front of my eyes was almost too much to handle. Edgar is as genuine a person and professional you will ever come across, it was trully an honor to celebrate with him and the rest of our teammates his great career as a Seatlle Mariner. It was an emotional time for all of us, I can't imagine what he was going through! One would be so lucky to have the career and impact as Edgar had. He means so much to the city of Seattle, and in those final days I could feel the love and admiration the fans had for him. It was the perfect ending for a career, and the perfect ending to my month in the big leagues. Working with Paul Molitor was another thing I will look back on and remember, hopefully I will get to work with him again in the future because he is a great hitting guy. His knowledge of the game and hitting is unsurpassed and I learned some very valuable things from him that I will use for the the rest of my career. He was always fun to be around and a great person to talk to about the game itself. Not everyday do players get to work with and be instructed by a Hall of Famer! Molitor was definately a strong influence on me in my short time up there.
What do you hope to get out of the Arizona Fall League? Is there any one thing specifically that you are working on? Are you playing anywhere else after the AFL wraps up? If so, where and when?
The Arizona Fall League is going to give me an opportunity to continue to build on my year and improve my game in all aspects. I am working hard on my defense at third, my hitting, and my overall strength and fitness. This league is great because the competition is outstanding and I believe my time here will only help me to improve. Having Mike Goff as my manager is a definate plus. He and I have a great history and he has taught me how to play the infield after they decided to convert me from an outfielder to a third baseman. I feel I owe him my gratitude for helping me make it to the big leagues this last year.
More importantly I want to have fun here in Arizona with my teammates.... and win! I do not plan to play anywhere else after the Fall League wraps up. I plan on taking the remainder of the offseason to rest, lift, and get ready for Spring Training.
InsidethePark.com thanks Greg Dobbs for taking time out his busy schedule during the Arizona Fall League to answer some questions. We wish Greg well, both this fall and in Spring Training 2005.
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