Mar 14, 2017|
Rob Bradford is joined by two-time All-Star outfielder Carlos Quentin, who is attempting a comeback with the Red Sox this spring. Quentin's path back to baseball involves almost quitting the game less than a year ago, losing 40 pounds and trying to sell himself to general managers all over Major League Baseball. Quentin explains his journey, which has led him to the back fields at JetBlue Park.
Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.
Add road show. That might open definitely probably would have brought that I don't. Wearing where you don't know what you're stupid Brad broad show. That's delicious. This sort of bizarre when you have a guy who. He's made two all star team finished fifth in the MVP voting one year has a 154 home runs. Has an 8310. Yes in nine years as a Major League you're still is only 34. And the only way you can find him and Red Sox can't usually isn't the backfield with the other minor leaguers. What sort of what you have what Carlos Quentin right now when he is to me one of the most interesting aspects of this camp. Best case scenario he lives at AAA Pataki. But how he's got to this point pretty interesting this is the guy who was on the verge of leaving baseball altogether. Last a year ago in. It is moving on in his life but instead he's given it one last Worrell he's doing it with the Red Sox for the whole ball. First getting to AAA and and seeing where Eric go from there but. These there was a very very strange path that Quinn talked from the time that he was in twins camp a year ago. As a guy who really as he would be if it wasn't really prepared the team reenergize his Major League career. To right now. Which. Was after losing forty pounds. Was after playing at a Mexican league for like a month. Is after calling GM. Himself diving go through an agent all of that that how we landed here at jetBlue park with the Red Sox. Or more specifically with the Red Sox minor leaguers with a hole. Of one day getting back to the Major League. It's a strange path an interesting story he tells at all. Well Carlos. Wins here and I was just in the Red Sox clubhouse and has started Dustin Pedroia you know Dustin right Karros then on a page through quite a bit high so he he wanted to thank you personally because he said he would never have won the the 2008 MVP. If it wasn't far at this do you miss some last month he said actually you would've thought is that you think that's accurate. You know does and he's a he's a great guy. He's honest person and appreciate him saying that you know seven very good year up until that point puts. If things happen the way they do end. You know he has an MVP award and you know it rightfully so yet amazing year. Well you got an amazing year army fifth fifth overall MVP voting so. And if you've talked a little bit about that you in the past a really wanna I wanna talk about is the here in the now and we just saw you play a little bit up in upn Clearwater. And then you do simulated game here. The first thing I wanna go through is is how are you feeling now because in case people don't know. He took last year you played the Mets seemingly correct I have played from month. Mexican League just kind as little to board wanted to kind of go and do take a little bit tonight did in. At that point gently for you know month and they came back my body felt terrible felt. Really bad at the united it was about time it was time for me. You know we don't baseball and kind of call it. Colquitt the north Philly went by kind of failed me at that point on the non athlete and anyways you know I went home and was rated so are transitioning again so so. He use. Long story short in terms of where you're here now you signed with no you signed with the Red Sox. Com buy do wanna ask you you just setting yourself you're ready call it quits in one thing you said this struck me. Which were as I was a non athlete. You were in twins camp last year correct. Yeah I was in twins. Camp but still it's a pretty good if phils you know strong. I was looking to try to you know provides him some outfield depth for them and play first base and DH. You know kind of do that role. But you know at the same time knows move around all rights and does camp progressed. My body was starting you know I have heard more and more and they was moving around there around 255 those my way. And knew by the in the camp my right knee is swollen up on me and I was kind of really struggling and I don't think it was a you know I think I had it in muted to go out and try to play season AAA or you know and not immune posture and even in the big leagues because. I think I think in my body when and let me do it in. We lost that was a good decision I don't think I would don't make it through last year if I had tried to go and try to you know battle out from the beginning the season with swollen knee. And knowing what would back in your career and set a record it was a very good career. And you had in did you all start team twice and just said MVP votes in and some really really great years. And he said but he said you know the Mexican leagues and because I think I don't foresee us you said you were bored. It's exactly you know I was kind of bored it's kinda it's is wanted to baseball. This is the ideal DH in. Laughed and the ball still came off the bat but as far as my body that was. They. Backs are different but that's so. Then there did you feel this is that I'm moving on to the next fast in my life. Tom and if that was the case when did it turn one turn where you said not gonna give this one last try and it changed things. Did anyone get to you did anything to anyone convince you was there a while my tennis. I I have seen the light sort of moment for. You know I came back from Mexican League I actually felt pretty good I felt like you know I. I was happy that I went down there that I gave it a shot down there I felt like I'd done everything I could. As a baseball player to. To satisfy that need to know that I. Left it all out to that a given it my all on me that he played baseball for thirty years your life you can commit your life too you just wanna make sure you. You did have the cut that I thought had reached that point so I was ready to transition you know is looking forward to you know wanna go out and surf and and paddle board and try to get some like you know kick boxing is do different things I wanted to be active the problem was I was in a lot of pain. And I felt like at that price that I couldn't even do those things those recreational activities. And that really close friend by my my best friends in the game again and John Baker catcher with the Marlins at the Padres and the Cubs. He was doing jujitsu and really enjoy anyone to try to try it and try kick boxing I say I really couldn't. My injuries and my body need recommended diet to me called Kelly Jennings diet. Showed me how to do it kind of walk me through it less of it and the whole idea was to get rid inflammation in my body. Allow me just to live a normal life and I started it and you know if I stay within it really was. It was great for us controlling my appetite. You know stopped eating at night it was just kind of a no brainer let me eat half the stuff I really liked him. And the other stuff like that you know sacrifice instead of just giving up everything you don't like but everything that you like it's bad for area it's. You know a lot of stuff was good for me in certain context anyways. After first couple months I lost twenty pounds immediately. And us are feeling good information left my elbow my shoulder as far as my other different. Theories of concern I have had throughout my career my knees start feeling better and you know at that point you know mom guys another month when. I lost another 585. To ten pounds and as Susan this is about one in the county. Geez. This is visits to the baseball season still going on or was it you do into the offseason. Yeah I was right at the I mean that the team playoff baseball started so I came back came back right around mid mid August. And September came kind of came and wins and I started to will be in September. September ago. Think she's challenged him amongst yourself on outside right around there I mean listen. November and right around November write this down abouts. Tony pounds. 125 pounds just and I just wanna get this clear this him tummy in the name of the other program again it's called the cabbage and it died today so. When I go into my day apps and doing the catatonic diet. It bit. In that the team to a Q EDO Hedo. It's based government do that diet is as I can go to LeRoy Salmons and he might chicken wings but instead of ignoring twelve sex. Missed divided it's not a simple as just. Taking half half the amount of food that you would. And the diet is that you don't eat your chicken wings he's just got to make sure enough breaded and you can have Buffalo sauce and about. There actually tastes fine. So you need as many of those you want that's a high fat content it's a high fat diet with low protein and carbohydrates each very afford one it's really hard to do that is a lot of fat to eat it's all about like. The type of fact you're eating and then you don't mix in the complex carved into it and no shirt so it's maintaining trying to keep sugar on your body which can cause information so. For me it was. It was great I mean lots of on the diet that I enjoy it and I enjoyed fodder enjoy you eggs enjoyed bacon I enjoyed or grinds and you know I cheers started subtle little bit better I enjoyed she's avocado. You can use salt so I mean there's a lot of things that. Are really like K it's like that meets you admit that met me halfway controlled my appetite and also. Gave me more energy where I didn't feel like I was crashing all the time with you know horrible putt a carbohydrate based diet anyways I mean. Oh what will the highest you guys for for weigh in what are you right now was it when I got back from exposed to 62. And right down to. Who told me three to 24. Manic NC Wear them make a difference but so so you get to the at the say the get the fall and and you feel good. You're your body's changed. Years you eat your ailments probably feel a lot better and when does that start creeping in OK and I give this one last chance. Well I got November. Noses almost at the thirty almost lost thirty pounds. I'm feeling good and I'm thinking you know like not go but kinda like well. And I'm feeling good side note finally losing this weight that I had been trying to lose for last five years my career and hadn't been able to. You know we have to be the injuries diet whatever I tried you know having chefs. Trainers all kinds of different angles and it just seemed like he was in my fates than to be able to cut this way also and now I'm losing the weight that I was always trying to cut. And I'm going into the holiday season where I've always gain ten to fifteen pounds it's like the rest of the world. And some might well see if I you know I said of what this far if I lose forty pounds and I have to pick up the phone call somebody. And Thomas set that mark that I didn't like spend December. You know. Trying to see if my body will be with stands you know. Harsh work puts us basically trying to break my body if I go ahead and that break myself than. It's not meant to be so I need to test it's I don't wanna come out and call somebody and come out your house and break down and I'd rather breakdown on my own. You know at home in private again you know and so I went to the holiday season. Could really push myself and Sam my diet and you know I end up losing. Six pounds which is unheard of and Jrue Holiday season for me. And I pushed me to over thirty and I was thirty pounds lost and I was getting close that forty Americans. You know through midway through January I was right there and I. Start swinging and hitting and I felt Gooden. That's UK from my wife she saw the transformation herself. You know she wasn't exactly happy was she understood. And what they've. Yet through all that stuff through everything you know kind of accidentally losing the way kind of pushing myself from feeling good as they created something that. I don't wanna live with that was regret. That's feeling this way in. Moving away did I felt like I was athletic again that had become somewhat of an athlete I feel like I had become an athlete again and I just didn't want you on the on its like pick the phone and called him GMs directly head on my age to call form a wanted to call myself and speak to them and let them know exactly what's. Where my head was that why I was calling I know how it looks from an outsider perspective of someone trying to. Keep paying it on and pulling on the game and you know retiring couple times and wanna come back and play and I just want to explain them that this was the hopefully will be different I just the same time you know I just didn't wanna regret not calling and if you know at that point he said no. And I would be fine I can live with that. The likes sorry. The Red Sox that the Red Sox. And mr. Dombrowski. Sense a guy scout and he deign to take a look at me and it's good report back to them and you know the guy can't be enough to give me a shot. Well take me through you said you want to call the GM directly so you pick up the phone you called Dave Dombrowski. And what was that conversation like in and how many GMs did you actually talk to. You know what I I call it they identified about you know maybe tend to twelve teams. That's. May have known me as a player that I had relationships possibly you know. They GM or had have just Novak think when I played I was a pretty private person. Must creating and still intense my play but it's you know a lot of people knew me and you in an age of social media and wearing a lot of people get to no. How someone is based on what they write what between years. Should provide on the Internet I don't know I don't believe in social media don't have social media and that's you know venue for someone to get to know somebody so you know I I was very private and so I I identified these kind of teams with my. With my agent of former agent and aid we know what he thought the risk. Brodie van wagon and and anyways he's my agent out someplace help. And I called them you know but some I got some call some you know some people go back to me that was great emerald was very open for listened to me in hearing me out. It can't be you know thankful not to those people those conversations when better than I thought they would. Even though it even if you can you know on this path somewhere and I know you know and but they still are good conversations for me to have. And you know couple guys in a couple teams didn't get back which was fine completely you know I didn't expect everyone to. For the most part everyone was very open it's. To hearing me out. They looked at their organization see if I fit and if I didn't you know that. You know they were they wished me well and I mean I appreciate those conversations as well and I talked to mr. Dombrowski and you. He knew me from when I was with the White Sox this plan against you don't use with the with the Detroit and you know looked at the system and it's no big thing was you have any room and you know there's possibly for some room here for me to. You know my guess that play whatever role they played like me to play and I understand I'm not in the fashion world the I'll be going to hopefully going to Pawtucket and playing there and in bats and and she in the one goal that I really wanted to do what I really wanted she was just to be healthy and feel you. You've had a lot of calls in terms of translations and the weather is being drafted door or signings or whatever. When you get the coffee in the Red Sox after you work out way that he Freddie game. And you get that call and you actually make that agreement what was that like compared to other sort of milestones in your career. I mean it's it was it was exciting. It's a steal all all of on the from miles and you reach and you're in your careers are just different based on the timing where your you know. A lot different emotions as far as. You know my you know lead my children beginning go on play. And uses the right thing in. It is because it's gonna make me better and better man better husband a father. I knowing that I did everything I could in this past in my life. But to get the you know the chance to come out here and and know that they were interested and they are willing to let you know kinda take a chance you know I was very thankful. You know on. There's a lot as a full range of motion to think about your your personal and your private community personal life and then you. You think about you know will you get this opportunity come and have a chance play affiliated baseball you see around the world how many people with dive for that opportunity so it's not something take lightly. And you just you're thankful for them to give you that shot into two. Listen you believe you and come look at you. And give you fair assessment and say hey. You may have something here that we possibly could use and as long as all the cards on the table and you understand and know hey look let's go and and you can be just be really grateful I think we thankful for them people take a chance and it's. It's it's in such an open deck still you know while I'm here on a few good have been recovering. You knock on wood did everything stays together. And that's there's some useful. Has it been what you thought it would be here in four marks. You know what. So organization's been very great they've been very they've reversed or four with me if on the smiley said it to me with a ton of respect. I wasn't really sure what it was going to be like and been in a Miley camp and while. All the younger guys and really great seems like they like to draft a lot of character based players obviously there's ton of talent on the mile excited as well. But they like to. To make sure there there there people associate with his organization quality class and treat people right and it seems like. That is the case that's always been kind of the word back that I have heard about him playing with. You know the Red Sox organization and it's it's. You seem very accurate. What so when you get that those at bats in Clearwater the other day Bozo like you get hit by a pitch in the first time which. You've you've you've you've pretty get that you've you've got hit he hit. But obviously not that he beat it's not I don't think you go into the had a bat saying look I can still get hit by a pixie when it was out frustrating that person. You know Lou was what I mean it was is just interstate I mean. I was. Felt good you see the pitches you see he can tell you see the ball usually in the first couple pitches you see actually saw the ball pretty well so my all right this is coming back. And then last expectancy actually give him by pitchman OK okay well that just happened so it's kind of go with the flow that's whatever and me I've had a history being hit by pitches so. Does whatever you know as a unit but it threw at bats later you get it yes. Well public this hell I get on base and I score running I'm like it has for around the bases at full speed on my OK this might have felt like I was moving well like. And I slid Julio had done some things that I never thought I could do about what. 67 months ago right that I was done doing and I just did it so for me and those are small like achievements. And I felt good about it and I get up next at bat and see the ball okay and striking out my all right so let's make adjustments and it's just the you start making adjustments like any other than thank you playing baseball the same thing like okay what I gonna do here to see the fastball batters in the Tibet. Made some quick adjustments and was able the barrel ball I felt great you know feels great to actually you know get a hit and and a big league environment. Yeah meanwhile what 'cause we sit here you've gone through that game and you. Have the same game against reports fellow Cy Young award winner and then having gone through this this is sort of the next task right in which is. You've seen Eric Noll was a pitcher for fillies and he's going to be in the rotation for sells for a sellout. You Philly guy I can do this I am I I feel like a track in the ball a few like he uses. They exactly some need to come up with a goal. When any give on the next day you have based on what she would be Becky you've got from how you perform in which you felt the day before sort of following wanna get on the fastball. Better so yesterday came in worked on it made some adjustments and boom I was on the fastball so I was happy to achieve that. That goal in the about the face. Report so it was great you wanted to see some movement on a ball in and make adjustments and to have an approach and I'm happy to feel like those those those parts are coming back in those are all the things that you have questions are as as a player especially when you've had time off this. For him be able to accomplish those small goals that you can to keep building. On. On which are trying to accomplish in the season and get better. He always wants very teams get better inconsistent. And I feel like I'm on that path and you know. I'm I'm appreciative and happy with that. This last question is so you said your your opens your Pataki it. You keep working on keep progressing as a base feel like okay and maybe this is agreement when you make your will your wife and your family whatever we're okay. We're gonna do this year where we're gonna figure it though and maybe ease that we're gonna do it that three. For the first three months is there a timetable in terms of months or a year or is this just we're gonna see how it goes in and I could be. Trying to figure this out two years from now but as long as I feel good I'm gonna keep keep going at a. You know as a timeframe for me. I said the goal is simple feel good and feel healthy on the field. Consistently. And to you know every day if I can continue to do that and that's no accomplishing that goal. And then that this game is always going to be a performance based game unified perform and I've been deemed valuable by the organization. Then they'll figure out how to it unlocked that value wherever when he deems fit whether it's. To contribute at the Major League level or two provided back. Or emergency rule for them and thought. And that's what I signed up for that's been their control that's that's fine I'm. From an open book with that. As far as you playing this game everyone loves the game in their own different way. And for me I obviously committed my life to this to this game for the first you know hopefully third of it. And I'll keep playing and and until I feel that I've done everything I can. To honor that commitment. One of the best stores or camp house thanks so much for joining us in and nom we look forward to seeing you play. That was it was it was trips and you play the other day I was a lot of fun so thanks laughter Jonas appreciate thank you.