Q&A: Matt Creighton

Matt Creighton is back with West Tenn after missing the first two months of the season with a broken hand and spending a month in Class-A action with Daytona. He recently talked to Inside The Ivy about the injury that plagued him earlier this year, his recent promotion back to Double-A, and more.

Inside The Ivy: Matt, you're back at Double-A after a brief stint with Daytona. How was Daytona and the Florida State League?

Matt Creighton: Daytona is in such a good league. There is lots of good pitching down there and lots of good arms. We had a good group of guys there. We were struggling while I was there unfortunately. I caught up with them and got off to a hot start, then cooled off a little bit before I came up here. Being in Daytona helped me get my swing back to where it needed to be--that was the main thing. I went through a period where I was fresh and ready to go, but I hadn't played in over two months, so I got a little tired after a week or so of playing. But I worked through it, got my legs back and was ready to go.

Inside The Ivy: Were you originally a little surprised to be sent to Daytona instead of one of the higher levels?

Matt Creighton: It didn't surprise me. I knew the West Tenn team had a lot of success and had a good group of guys put together. I knew it wouldn't be easy to just fly right into something where a team has done so well. It's not fair to take someone's job on a winning team. When I got healthy, I was just happy that there was still a place open for me to go. You miss spring training and all of a sudden rosters get filled. I was just happy that I didn't have to stay in extended (spring training). I was neither surprised or upset.

Inside The Ivy: The reason you were late in returning was because you broke your hand with about a week to two weeks left in spring training. How is your hand at the moment? Do you ever have any setbacks or problems with it?

Matt Creighton: The hand is now 100 percent. It just didn't heal as quickly as they thought it would. It started to get better, and I got an x-ray every other week to check it out, but after about three weeks it didn't heal as quickly as it did during the first three weeks. It just took awhile. It was disappointing and frustrating because I wanted to play. The hand felt like it was ready to go, but the x-ray showed it wasn't healed. It's very frustrating when you feel like you're ready to go play.

Inside The Ivy: Were you surprised that the healing process took so long?

Matt Creighton: I was, for two reasons: one, it felt like it was healed when it wasn't, so that was a surprise. Two, I've always been a very fast healer. I've always come back a little faster than predicted, so I was surprised by that as well.

Inside The Ivy: Have you had any close calls since you returned?

Matt Creighton: I had one little scare in Daytona when I got hit by a pitch. I have one of those "Jeff Bagwell gloves" that I have to wear on my hand, because they want to make sure that if I were to get hit again, nothing would break. I had a scare when I was hit right on top of the pad. Thankfully, it just showed how well those things work. It did a good job of sustaining the blow, and I didn't have any problems. That's the only scare I've had.

Inside The Ivy: You spent most all of 2004 at West Tenn. How are you enjoying it there this year?

Matt Creighton: I'm enjoying this team a lot. Some things have changed. Faces change, but the main thing I'm enjoying is the winning atmosphere. Not that we didn't have a good group here last year, but it's just a more confident atmosphere where we expect to win every day. And it's nice, because it's fun to be part of a winning team. It's fun to expect to win; that's what folks here are after. We don't chase our personal stats. It's always fun.

Inside The Ivy: What can you tell us about your role with the Jaxx? Is that something your coaches have discussed with you?

Matt Creighton: No, I don't know exactly what it is or what it will be. I've been here for only a few games and have played in left field the whole time. It appears I'll primarily be in the outfield. I don't know for sure just yet, though. I'll just go prepared every day and try to do the best I can wherever they want me.

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