BY: ED COLE
GLENDALE, Ariz. – Paul Goldschmidt had a monster 2015 season for the Arizona Diamondbacks. He set career-highs in batting average (.321), walks (118), intentional walks (29), stolen bases (21), on-base percentage (.435), slugging (.570) and OPS (1.005), to go along with his 33 home runs and 110 RBI.
There’s not much Goldschmidt needs to do to take his game to the next level, because it’s already there.
“Same as I’ve done every year,” Goldschmidt said. “I could care less about stats, but just show up, and prepare, and put the work in, and do the best that I can, (and) just try and go out there and perform (in) all facets of the game. It doesn’t mean stats are going to be better or worse, but (I’ll) just try to go out there and do my best, be a good teammate, and hopefully, at the end of the year, help us win a lot of games.”
“Everyone wants to win that World Series,” Goldschmidt said. “All 30 teams are sitting in the same spot right now. We all want to be there, and everyone’s going to do everything they can to reach their goal.”
So how does someone like Paul Goldschmidt continue to stay at that high level each and every year? How does he stay consistent, and on top of his game for an entire 162-game season?
Goldschmidt says it’s a combination of him tweaking certain things in his game along with trusting in himself and relying on his skills and talents.
“I think you’re always looking for ways to improve (the) stuff we’re working on in the offseason, whether it’s with our strength coach, or trainers, and talking with the hitting coaches, talking with the managers, (and) infield coach(es), however it is,” Goldschmidt said. “It’s probably little tweaks guys are making, but are mostly what they are. It’s always ways to get better. We know the guys on other teams are getting better, (and) pitchers are going to try to find more ways to get us out, so we got to keep improving and try to keep up with them.”
One of the newest additions to the Diamondbacks’ coaching staff, hitting coach Dave Magadan, is someone Goldschmidt knew from the track record he built while he was a player, and also as a hitting coach with the Padres, Red Sox and Rangers.
Goldschmidt got the word from many different directions on just how good a hitting coach Magadan is.
“This is funny. We hired him (Magadan), and I never met him, (but) I knew his name and all that, but I got about four or five texts within the first week from past players that he coached saying, ‘Man, you’re gonna love him, you’re gonna love Mags and all that,’” Goldschmidt said. “So (it) definitely got me excited. I got to talk to him on the phone, and (I) know he’s got a ton of experience as a coach, and a player, and I look forward to working with him on a daily basis.”
Arizona made moves and brought in some new faces on their coaching staff, and on their roster as well, with the additions of pitchers Zack Greinke and Shelby Miller, along with shortstop Jean Segura, all of whom Goldschmidt are excited to team up with this season.
“Yeah it’s exciting,” Goldschmidt said of Greinke and Miller. “Both of those guys are aces, and All-Stars, and have done a great job. I’m looking forward to getting to know them, and watching them pitch instead of having to face them. Some great additions to our team.”
“It’s funny. We (he and Segura) were talking about it. We played against each other in rookie ball, and coming up through the Minor Leagues, so I definitely know him well,” Goldschmidt said. “(I) played against him for a long time. He’s a great player, and I’m excited to have him.”