The Answer Man — Brandon Belt

I’m still getting jabbed about my around-the-horn throw that went between Crawford and Panik and sailed into left field in Cincinnati. They both just stood there. Watched it go by. Making me look like an idiot. I have to catch every ball they throw, no matter where it is. And they can’t move an inch or two? It makes me crazy that when MLB network shows one of our double plays, they cut it off right before I catch it. I don’t know why first-basemen get no credit. Not everybody can do this job.

Actually pretty much anybody can do this job. OK, so that’s probably why.

I returned from the road trip Sunday night to an empty house. I hate it. It’s different when you’re by yourself in a hotel room. But to go home to your house and it’s completely empty, man, that’s brutal. I’ve been sleeping all day basically. On Monday, our off day, Haylee called and said, “You didn’t just get up, did you?’’ I’m not going to tell you what time it was, but I told her there was nothing to do, so why not stay in bed? It really is like a part of you is gone when your wife and kid aren’t there. We played in Houston, near our hometown, so Haylee just stayed there. We have just a three-game homestand before going back out on the road, so it wasn’t worth traveling all the way here. I’ll see her and Greyson next Wednesday. I’ll be so happy. If Greyson’s asleep, I’m waking him up, for sure.

I try to Facetime with him when I’m away, but it’s hard because he tries to eat the phone. He says da-da-da-da-. That’s pretty much the extent of his end of the conversation. But he always smiles when he sees me, so I’m pretty happy about that.

A few of you asked for photos, so here they are.

IMG_1970IMG_1971

OK, I’m answering questions today:

What do you and the base runners talk about at first base? In Cincinnati, I asked their shortstop Zack Cozart what happened between last year and this year at the plate. He really struggled last year, and this year he’s hitting almost .300. He said pretty much what I always say: so much of performance at this level comes down to confidence. And the more experienced you get, the more confidence you get. That’s why I was able to stay confident during my slump. I’d been through it before, and I knew it would turn around. A lot of guys at first base this year said, “Congrats on the World Series.’’ I talked to Morse a lot when he was here. He was telling me how awesome it was to be back here and how much he enjoyed his time with the Giants.

Now that Vogey shaved his beard, are you next? No. I feel manlier with the beard. It gives me a better jaw line. So it’s staying.

Losing the ball in the lights on a toss from Casilla? That’s the first time it ever happened on a throw from a pitcher. I think he was testing me. He knew I could catch an easy ball thrown over there, so let’s see what ball I CAN’T catch. So he threw into the lights. Nah, I just think he was trying to be careful in his throw and it just happened to go a little high into the lights. I kind of knew the direction and just threw my glove out there. You can’t catch what you can’t see.

Who do you pal around with? Usually my family’s with me, so we might go to eat with Bumgarner and his wife, Ali. We don’t get a whole lot of time with our families so when they’re with us, that’s who we’re with.

If we’re on the road and the wives aren’t with us, I might go to the movies with Javy and Kontos. We’re the movie guys. I didn’t go to the movies on this road trip, but I watched one on the plane home and went to the theater on the off day (Monday) in Walnut Creek. My reviews are at the end of the blog.

How do you keep pressures on the field from affecting your family life? I’d say at some point everybody goes through a time when something that happens at work affects your home life. But you just try your hardest not to let it. When i go home and see the smile on my kid’s face, and see my wife again, it kind of just makes everything else go away for a while. I’m not going to lie, there are times when I might have snapped at Haylee because of something that happened here at the ballpark. But overall I think I do a pretty good job of separating. I love playing baseball. I love it as much as anything in the world. I just don’t love it more than my family. So I try to keep that in perspective and realize there’s a separation.

What did you do for your birthday? It fell on an off-day, so I did a signing in San Jose for about an hour, then we all hung out with my host mom. It was just a relaxing day. Exactly what I wanted.

Taste in music? I like everything. But I’d have to say my favorite band is Chevelle.

Most embarrassing thing you’ve done? I don’t embarrass easy. Things that might be embarrassing to someone else probably isn’t going to bother me.

Do you hear conversations between the runner and first base coach? I certainly try!

Sequence of getting your rhythm back at the plate? Once you get your mechanics back, power follows. When you’re in a slump, you go back to basics: just getting your bat on the ball. Just getting hits. You start hitting line drives. Then the line drives start to carry a little bit farther and little bit farther. You start getting extra-base hits, and those extra-base hits start turning into home runs. The last past two or three weeks, that’s exactly what happened to me.

Is there a sign when you know you have it all going? When I’m hitting line drives to all parts of the field.

Favorite city to play in? I like St. Louis. I like the ball park. Great atmosphere. I also like playing back home in Texas. That’s always good.

Favorite baseball movie? I loved, when it first came out, The Rookie. That’s right up there with Sandlot and Bull Durham.

Favorite cultural night? I’m still waiting for Texas night.

Movie reviews:

Whiplash: It’s about this kid who’s a drummer. You can just tell he wants to be the greatest drummer that ever lived. He just has this drive that’s beyond comparison. The story kind of relates to anything in life you’re passionate about. I can relate it to baseball. If you want to be the best, you have to have that drive and just beat yourself up to get there. That’s what he did. There are times in the movie when he’s drumming so much, his hands are bleeding all over the drum set. I’m not saying that’s what has to happen to be the best, but you have be willing to go through hell. You find with a lot of guys in the big leagues. The teacher in that movie is ruthless, but he’s the kind of guy you want because he demands the best. I never had a coach as ruthless as that, but I had a bunch of coaches who wanted the best of out me like that teacher did with his students. I loved the end of the movie. The kid was just going crazy on the drums, putting in one of the best solo drum performances ever. So even though the teacher tried to screw him over, I think the kid couldn’t help but see where it got him.
 Grade: A+. I’d watch it again.

Ex Machina: Basically it’s about artificial intelligence. This guy gets chosen to go to this research facility where they’re testing these robots. He wants to see if these robots can pass some kind of test where the human interacting with the machine forgets that that it’s a machine. It’s kind of a thriller-type movie with all these twists. There were moments when I thought, “If it ends this way, I’m not going to be happy.’’ But it had a good ending.
 Grade: B+/A- I saw it in Walnut Creek on the off day. I saw by myself, which is the way i like it. Some people get weirded out going places by themselves, but i love it. I’m around people all day, so it’s nice to go by yourself and just enjoy the movie.

Thanks for reading. I might have gone on a little too long today. Sorry!

Keep the questions coming!

26 Comments

Good job batting lately Brandon. Glad you came out of your little slump that you were concerned about in the last post. Thank you for sharing your pics and movie reviews. I was wondering if you were able to draft Crawford on your “Team Brandon” since both of you are having great stats as of late. Also was wondering if Hunter has provided any inspirational speeches yet?

Thank you for sharing. Stay as great as you are!

Thanks, Brandon! We love hearing about all the little things that go on during games, in the clubhouse, etc. You guys are so generous to share this with the fans. Keep hitting those dingers!

Love the pics of you and Greyson. You guys are doing great. Fun to watch. Beat LA!

Loved your post! Never too long, always entertaining. :o) And you answered my question about what you talk to runners about on 1st base! That was pretty cool. Went to Spring Training this year with my daughter for the first time, finally, but still couldn’t get too close to you guys for signatures, which I understand. We did have a couple of the perks in our package, though, so thought there would be more of you at, say, the BBQ, to get signatures. Anyway, glad you guys are on here. Your son is ADORABLE. Great picture of the two of you. You need to be serious on the field, so seeing you smile from ear-to-ear with your baby was cute. I will see Whiplash now, thank you. I was on the fence about it, but it sounds good. Thanks for the review. Yeah, going to the movies solo is actually nice. Anyway, this is too long now, too. Loved your comment about “Sequence of rhythm.” Baseball really is a good metaphor for life, isn’t it? And once you know the slumps will pass, it gets easier. But, I love baseball, too, so I’m biased. I respectfully asked for Kruk and Kuip’s signatures when I passed them in the airport on the way home from Arizona and they were just as nice as they are on the air. Two great guys, no surprise. I’m in the North Bay so don’t really frequent the movie theaters in Walnut Creek, but maybe I’ll get to the ball park early enough one of these days to be able to get your signature on the baseball we started down in Arizona in March. Great to see your batting is taking off!!! And B. Craw, with that Grand Slam! And, you do dig a lot of stuff out of the dirt routinely at 1st and save outs, runs, and wins for the pitcher, even though your double plays get cut-off sometimes (which I haven’t noticed). It’s really contrasting when you watch another MLB team play and think, “Wow, Belt and Posey both would have snagged that, easily.” :o) With your height and wingspan, you’re an extra asset at that corner.

Brandon, you and B-Craw can write as long as you like…Speaking about embarrassment, wait until Greyson is a teenager and HE will be embarrassed by his parents (Kinda fun to do that)….Hi to Hayley!

Love reading the movie reviews!! and I am with you on a Texas night.. keep up the good work!!

I enjoyed reading this so much, you are just awesome. Your baby is so adorable… I think you should keep the beard you look good. Thanks for the movies review I’ll make sure to watch them, I like it when people recommend movies. I’m glad you came out of your slump we all knew you would. Keep up the good work! Go Giants!

The Giants are playing some amazing baseball the pat week. Great fun to watch, and especially to see you moving out of your little slump and producing like the Pro that you are. Thanks again, for sharing your time so generously and letting us know how you are doing on a personal level. The picture of Greyson are so cute – he looks like he has a lot of personality.

Thanks again.

Whenever the blog pops up, it’s like a little bit of sunshine on what is (today at least) a very gray day. Thanks for posting – see you tonight (and tomorrow) when you hopefully whomp the Dodgers!

Thanks for writing Brandon, I always enjoy reading all of the Giants blogs. Couple questions for you — one is about you trying to eat more healthy foods. How’s that going? The other is how good is your Spanish, you being from Texas and all. Can you understand / communicate en espanol?

Agreeing with many of the fans here, please write as much as you and Crawdaddy are able to but obviously when you have the time and energy. You guys give us a personal perspective that I honestly don’t think we get from most the other media because I’m sure you guys have to be a bit more guarded in your answers and sometime the only answer the media wants to hear are canned responses.

By the way, my favorite Giants of all time is Will “The Thrill” Clark and I love that you have as sweet a swing as he does. Does he talk to you about your swing much?

Terrific post! Maybe your best I’ve read yet… bravo! And I love the photos of you and Greyson. He can stick the 2nd one on his locker when he starts playing pro ball.

P.S. I was so happy for you last Friday night. And Saturday… and Sunday! Those long balls must have felt wonderful.

Reblogged this on THE LIGHTER SIDE OF SPORTS and commented:
This is a heartfelt posting from our beloved 1st baseman. He is precious! Mr. Belt sir, you don’t have to be perfect! You are close enough. My only complaint there is only one of you.

Good article. Very refreshing.

Great reviews! I loved both Whiplash and Ex Machina too, so I’m glad you appreciated both of them.

OMG, that baby is SO adorable! Looks just like his daddy.🙂

I’ve been telling anyone who’ll listen 2015 is the Year of the Baby Giraffe; it just got off to a slow start but you’re rolling now! Keep it up.

Love the blog – your entries are never too long! Always enjoy hearing all the updates! And thanks for sharing baby pics! Awwwwww.

Cuteness overload! Such a big bundle of joy!

Maybe I’m a little biased (okay, a LOT biased), but I do think 1st Basemen are often taken for granted and definitely not given enough TV time!

So happy to see how things have turned around since your last blog. Keep Belting them out of here.

BB: you and BC will never write too much. Your son is gorgeous and I love the way you talk so affectionately about your family. We avid fans really enjoy knowing more about our Giants than just statistics and how they play the game, although those are important, too. Congratulations on your phenomenal turn-around; you are such a baseball hero! The whole team is, and we all know there are ups and downs but thanks so much for contributing to the ups! Hope you realize how much all of us gamer babes love watching you play and reading your blog!

Great posts and thank you for including pictures of your son! I love how well you have done at the plate recently. It’s exciting to see the team totally in sync.
Question for the day: Are you an Entourage fan? I hope that we get to read your review of the upcoming movie!

Love the pictures of Greyson! He’s absolutely adorable! Thanks for answering my question. Whenever I watch the games with my boyfriend, I always ask him “What do you think Belt is talking about when they go to first base?”! Here’s another question: when’s your next fan meet and greet?? Keep doing great out there! Go Giants!

That was amazing watching you get that massive home run yesterday! Absolutely incredible. Do you read at all? And if so what’s your favorite book?

Brandon you should check out the Blackhawk theatre in Danville. There’s leather reclining seats!

Not too long. Just needed time to read. Great photos. Thanks

I have a question for you! I heard you were a pitcher in college and when you do have to throw to second, you can see what a great arm you have. Do you feel like it’s wasted one 1st base? The throw you made home from left field against the Dodgers was a rocket. You dig out the worst throws on first base. With the arm and your fielding ability, have you ever thought of playing 3rd? I suppose you just go where Boch sends you, I imagine.

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