Q&A: Grant Johnson

ITI: What has your "offseason" consisted of to this point? Grant Johnson: All I've been doing is running, lifting, and stretching. Other than that, I think [the organization] wants me to be more prepared for the season ahead, rather than just the first day of Spring Training. They're taking it slow and being cautious with my arm to make sure things are all right.

ITI: Tell us a little about your off-season fitness regimen.

Grant Johnson: Right now, I'm just on the Cubs' standard program. There are two days of lower body lifts, then two days of upper body lifts. Other than that, it's running five days a week, and mixing it up with long distances and sprints.

ITI: Do you have some idea as to where you may be once you break Spring camp?

Grant Johnson: Not at the moment, no. They haven't told me too much about that. I'm hoping for one of the Class-A levels. I just got to Mesa about a week ago.

ITI: You were drafted in June but did not sign with the team until August 13. What can you tell us about your contract?

Grant Johnson: I think the biggest thing is that I'll be able to go to school in two consecutive falls and get my degree from Notre Dame. My major was Marketing, so I'm happy about that. I only have a couple of classes left.

ITI: What is your biggest goal between now and the regular season?

Grant Johnson: To be in the best shape I can to get ready for Spring Training, and to do whatever is asked of me.

ITI: What is the best way to prepare yourself for the long season ahead?

Grant Johnson: Other than staying in shape, I just take it one step at a time and understand I have a long season ahead. I take every day and make the most of it. Focus mentally and try to stay positive.

ITI: Who have you worked with the closest since joining the Cubs' farm system?

Grant Johnson: The one person I've worked with most is Greg Keuter (Cubs Minor League Medical Coordinator), who is checking out my stretching and making sure my shoulder is in good shape. He is a good trainer and sports therapist.

ITI: Have you gotten to know any of your fellow minor leaguers/prospects?

Grant Johnson: Not really, but they all seem like great guys.

ITI: Just for fun, who is your pick for the Super Bowl?

Grant Johnson: I would have liked to have seen the Colts win it all being that they're from the Midwest. Don't take New England lightly.

ITI: What is the best advice you've received since being drafted?

Grant Johnson: I've gotten so much that it's unbelievable. One of the best things I ever heard was from an old pitching coach, who told me "the worst day on the mound, or anywhere on the field, is still one of the best days." He said "no matter how much you're getting frustrating out there, it's always better than being in an office."

ITI: Here, here. Good luck this season, Grant.

Grant Johnson: Thanks!

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