PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Phillies season has not gotten off to a sparkling start, and without Kevin Frandsen’s game winning double on Saturday night, the situation would seem even more dire.
Before Frandsen’s at-bat on Saturday against the Royals, in the ninth inning of a three-run game, he had just one plate appearance this year. Needless to say, he wasn’t in any kind of a rhythm.
So when at-bats are hard to come by, how does Frandsen stay in the game mentally?
“In about the third inning I go and sit in the sauna for a little bit, try to get a sweat going, go in the cage, run around,” Frandsen told Angelo Cataldi and the 94WIP Morning Show on Monday. “Basically, you keep your mind in the game. There’s TVs everywhere, you’re watching the game, you’re seeing how guys are being pitched. You’re just waiting for that moment, whether it’s a pitcher with a high pitch count in the 5th or 6th, or there is a double-switch coming on. You just got to be prepared for different things. Once the 8th and 9th inning, you got guys that are throwing 98-99 [MPH], you are tending to move the L-screen up for batting practice a little bit closer in the cage, that’s what I do.”
“I’d like to think that I am a major league hitter, so at some point in time that’s going to overcompensate for anything,” he said. “Whether a guy is throwing 95-96 [MPH], bases loaded, bottom of the 9th, 2-out—it seems like that is a saying on the back of a t-shirt. You’re just going to get up for that moment anyway, it doesn’t matter.”
Frandsen swung and made contact, but was hardly sure that he had just won the game for the Phils.
“I looked up and had no idea where the ball is, because 96 [MPH], I may have fouled it off or whatever, and I saw the right-fielder running toward right center and I saw the center-fielder running toward right center and I was like, ‘Oh that’s good!’,” Frandsen said.
The next thing Frandsen had to deal with, was the pile-on that comes with a game-winning, base-clearing double.
“You have Ben Revere running at you, I can take him out,” Frandsen said. “I jump, he holds me, and I see Ryan Howard coming at me full speed. That’s not home to first. It’s from dugout to second base and that’s a lot of speed going there, and that’s a big man. Kind of got nervous, and I just tried getting over the pile.”
The Phillies are 2-4, and looking up at the Mets, Braves, and Nationals in the NL East.
“156 [games] left. Our team is a pretty damn good squad. We’re gonna go 156 more and hopefully by then we’re atop of the [NL] East, or a top of the Wild Card,” Frandsen said.