Weeks chats about life in the bigs
Rookie second baseman participates in Web chat
A June callup, rookie Rickie Weeks sat down to chat with fans online about his transition from Triple-A to starting second base for the Brewers. Weeks talked about his goals for the season and how he can help Milwaukee be a playoff contender.
Rickie Weeks: Hello everyone. Thank you for joining me for today's online chat.
Base_Ball_3: Hey Rickie, do you see this team as a contender in the next few years?
Weeks: Yes, I do because of the coaching staff, Ned Yost, and company. With the addition of some youth and the veteran leadership of our team, we have great talent to compete with anyone in the league.
Ashley_Kolata: I've been reading your "Rookie's Diary" in Sports Illustrated, which is fun to read. How did you get involved doing it -- did SI come to you or did you go to them? Also, good to have you as a city neighbor (I live in Muskego).
Weeks: SI approached our Media Relations Department and asked me to do a biweekly journal to see how my life was going in the Minor Leagues, and with a possible callup.
mlb_com_member: Who did you admire most when your where growing up?
Weeks: The person I most admired was Rickey Henderson of the Oakland A's because of what he did on the field, such as hitting for power, stealing bases, getting on base, scoring runs. He did a lot of things to assist the team in winning in so many different areas.
luvsrickiew: Hey Rickie, I'm a huge fan of yours. What do you do in your spare time when you aren't playing baseball? Also are you single?
Weeks: In my spare time I just hang out with a couple guys on the team, such as J.J. Hardy and Prince Fielder, and grab a bite to eat. Also, I enjoy fishing on Lake Michigan and bowling, shopping. And I am also single, for all of you ladies out there.
coghlanjr: What current player on the Brewers has taught you the most this season?
Weeks: I think everyone has taught me in some way or another to show me the big league life.
Base_Ball_3: How did it feel to hit a home run off of Roger Clemens?
Weeks: It felt good knowing he is a potential Hall of Famer and just knowing that it was Roger Clemens. But the best thing was winning the game against him.
Al_Bethke: Rickie, congrats on your success thus far. You usually take a lot of pitches at the plate. Have you always done this, or was it taught to you in high school or college? Also, how do you feel it benefits you, other than leading to more walks?
Weeks: Not really, I have not always taken a lot of pitches. I think that when I first got to professional baseball and saw how good the pitches were, you have to really concentrate on getting a really good pitch to hit. It benefits me because you get a tendency as to how the pitcher is attacking you with his pitches.
suc106866: What is the best prank that the veterans have pulled on you as a rookie?
Weeks: That would be shaving cream in my face during an interview after Prince and I each hit home runs. I don't think I have gotten my taste buds back yet.
madtownbrew: Rickie, great to see you up in Milwaukee and having success. What has been the biggest challenge thus far in making the jump from the Minors to the big show?
Weeks: Probably trying to recognize pitchers and what they throw. I have not seen too many pitchers more than once.
Mark_Murphy: Do you have a favorite spot in the lineup? How do you like batting first over second?
Weeks: I have hit second in the lineup throughout the Minor Leagues and my first couple of months in the Major Leagues. In college I hit third. Right now I am hitting leadoff because of the injury to Brady Clark. I don't mind it, but I am most comfortable batting second.
sheetnweek: Hey Rickie, what inspired you to do the same stance as Gary Sheffield?
Weeks: My stances is really not the same as Sheffield. At times, I may look like him in the batter's box as players have told me. But it came about the last month of the season in the Minor Leagues. I needed some sort of rhythm and timing at the plate. It is different because I have a toe tap and he has a big leg kick.
foop42: Do you think you have a better chance of hitting .300 or hitting 35 homers next year?
Weeks: I think both are very great accomplishments but I think I would rather stick with being consistent day in and day out. Those two can possibly be reached next year or somewhere down the line.
Paige_Smola: Congratulations on a great rookie season so far. We love to follow the Brewers. Is your pregame favorite food still a chicken sandwich with American cheese and bacon?
Weeks: Yes it is. And my buddy, Jason Shawger from our home clubhouse, makes the great sandwich.
luvsrickiew: Do you like playing in Milwaukee? Where is your favorite place to play?
Weeks: I love playing in Milwaukee because of the great fans and how they respect the game. A lot of times you go to other stadiums and other fans do not know as much about baseball as the fans in Milwaukee do.
brewhaha: What are your personal goals since moving up to the Majors?
Weeks: My goal is to finish out the season on a strong note. Taking the positives into the offseason and building on the negatives and hopefully coming back a stronger player for 2006. During the offseason, my goals, of course, are to stay in shape and come back strong to play second base for the Milwaukee Brewers.
rinbaby: What did you feel like when you heard you were getting called up from Nashville?
Weeks: I was really shocked. Laying in bed in Iowa, I got a call from my Triple-A manager, Frank Kremblas. I was really shocked because I was told in Spring Training that I would be spending pretty much a full year at Triple-A and getting some more at-bats with a possible callup in September.
sheetswannabe: Is it hard adjusting to Major League pitching after you have been in Triple-A?
Weeks: I think being in the Major Leagues and facing the Major League pitching gives you some sort of respectability of preparation and how they attack you, whereas in Triple-A, everyone is coming at you blind and don't know really how to attack you.
Base_Ball_3: What do you do before the game to get ready?
Weeks: I listen to my iPod while getting stretched in the clubhouse. Getting a snack to eat. Making sure my cleats are cleaned and my uniform is neat.
Base_Ball_3: Does this team see itself in the Wild Card hunt?
Weeks: I think we see ourselves in the Wild Card hunt but at the same time I think Ned Yost will not let us get past today. He stresses that we take each day game by game.
Tyler_Berg: What do you feel you need to improve on to help the Brewers be a playoff contender?
Weeks: I think that I should improve on being more consistent offensively and defensively to help this team win and also bring a championship back to Milwaukee.
pnutz99: Rickie, how are negotiations going with your brother? Will we see him suiting up for the Brewers or the University of Miami?
Weeks: I think negotiations have pretty much ended. And I think my brother will be attending the University of Miami to further his education and his athletic ability. Education is stressed in our family, so I think that is the best choice for him and knowing that he will be able to follow his dreams later on.
mbgal: Hey Rickie. I was at the game in St. Louis when you hit that upper-deck shot. It impressed all the non-Brewer fans around me! What has been your favorite part of the Majors since you've arrived?
Weeks: I think getting to know players on my team, as well as on other teams, and getting to travel to the different stadiums that I have seen on television. Not to mention the warm welcome from fans in other cities that I have also received.
luvsrickiew: Rickie, do you talk to opponents when they are on second base? If so, what do you talk about?
Weeks: Yes we do. We just chat about how the city is treating them, how they are playing, where they are going next, just general stuff.
mlb_com_member: What do you like and not like about being a Brewer?
Weeks: Like I said before, the fan base is outstanding, but most of all I think our team is heading in the right direction and I like the fact that the clubhouse camaraderie has been great. There is really not too much not to like about Milwaukee.
Weeks: Once again, I would like to thank you for joining me in today's online chat. Go Brew Crew!
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.