|Getting To Know Luke Scott|
"Excuse me, look out, coming through," he says. "I’m on a roll here."
Scott bounces around the clubhouse like a 10-year-old at Disney World on a Mountain Dew binge. To some observers it may seem a bit odd, but to his Orioles teammates and coaches, that’s just Luke being Luke.
Recently, PressBox caught up with the slugger to get his side of things and find out what makes the eccentric left fielder tick.
How do you approach the game of baseball? Is there something in particular that makes you successful?
I take the game seriously. When I do something, especially something that I have passion for, I do it with all my might. … I like to win just like the next guy and I want to do well. I want to have personal success and team success. All of that is what makes the game fun. Whether the results are good or bad, I want to put myself in a position to be successful.
On a game-to-game basis, what do you do to prepare?
It's usually pretty similar every day. I come in and do a little bit to loosen up. I hit off a tee and then look at the video of the starting pitcher. I form a game plan of how they are going to pitch me; whether they do it or not, you always need to have a game plan when you go out there. I take a look at my notes in my little book and make sure I have all the information I need. That book is getting quite famous around here.
You have been predominantly a streak hitter this year and throughout your career. To what do you attribute that?
I can’t put my finger on it. My approach is basically the same every day, but in baseball we go through tests and trials, and that is just how it is. I don’t like being a streaky hitter; I would rather be just consistently good. I try to balance that out by being consistent in my preparation every single day.
It seems that when you are on the field or in the clubhouse, you are bouncing around and playing with a high energy level. What is the big reason for your passionate play?
My teammates help because they are a good group, and they are blue-collar types. We are a blue-collar type team, really. We have guys who have worked hard and they appreciate what they have. At the same time we have fun and we love to win.
Some of your teammates, Kevin Millar included, have talked about the nutritional supplements you have been passing around the clubhouse.
The favorite around here is what we call "the Candy." I am telling you it is the best thing you can put in your mouth. It is basically a protein drink. I have a little candy time every day. It is absolutely amazing.
Can you give out the ingredients?
Of course, it’s no secret. I take Muscle Milk protein, frozen blueberries, peaches or mangos and I put that in there with protein mix. Next comes four heaping tablespoons of cottage cheese, plain yogurt, flaxseed oil and organic apple cider vinegar. You blend all that up and it is one of the greatest-tasting things that you can put in your mouth.
How do nutrition and physical fitness play into your game?
It’s huge. I have a personal trainer that I train with during the offseason and once a month during the season. I have a physical therapist that makes sure everything is loose and working. He does evaluations on my health and fitness.
I make sure I eat right and get plenty of rest. I am not a big party guy but I do go out sometimes and have a beer or a glass of wine. I do get out a little bit and relax instead of being a hermit.
I make sure I eat well. Calories aren’t a concern for me because I burn a lot; it is the quality of food that is important. My typical breakfast is oatmeal, eggs with whole flaxseeds and buckwheat that I throw in there. I try and eat things that are good for me, things that will do my body good. Definitely no sugar; I don’t drink sodas. I may have a ginger ale on the plane or something, but really I haven’t had a Coca-Cola in six or seven years.
What teammates have you bonded with in particular, and what has allowed those relationships to grow?
I think I have bonded with all of them -- with my Latin brothers especially, because I speak Spanish. I have played with guys like Melvin [Mora] in Venezuela and I knew him before I came here. We are a great group, one of the best I have been around.
Where did you learn to speak Spanish?
As a kid, I had a lot of Latin teammates and friends. I made an effort to learn and paid attention in school and practiced with my Latin buddies.
Where would you say you are in your baseball career and what are your expectations for your time here in Baltimore?
I always have high expectations. I want to win, go to the playoffs and win a World Series.
If you want my opinion on things, the turnaround that has been made this year in management, the front office and especially in the locker room is tremendous. We are going in the right direction. We have a great offense and we play the game hard as a group.
I went to the World Series in 2005 with the Astros and I know what it takes to get there. It really takes good pitching. If you have that, you are going to get to the playoffs and you can get deep. Look at the teams this year. Tampa has an efficient offense and the thing that sticks out with them is pitching. It is always going to be that way.
As told to Ben O'Brien.
Issue 3.38: September 18, 2008