One of you guys [reporters] told me. I was excited; I guess it just came out through e-mail or whatever. That's how I learned, some guy came and told me. But it was awesome, you know?
What went through your head?
Excitement. Obviously it's exciting to come up after a big year and to be able to be recognized like that again, it kind of stands out. It makes you feel good and hopefully it shows the organization that you're ready to play.
What does it mean that you're the only guy to win it twice?
That's pretty cool too. Hopefully I won't have to win it again. But that means a lot, and I think that's probably one of the coolest parts, that no one else in this organization has ever done it before. To be able to do it twice, especially coming off an injury, is awesome.
Can you look at this as a symbol of coming all the way back, and proving you're as good after the injury as you were before it?
Definitely. I think probably for me the biggest thing was that after the year I had in 2003, a lot of people were saying, 'Oh, it might be a fluke.' Hopefully I put all that to rest and showed that it wasn't. It means a lot. Any time you can win any kind of big award, it means a lot. I'll find a nice little place for it at home.
What's more meaningful: this award, or the Eastern League MVP?
Probably the organizational one, because that one's recognized out of everybody in the organization. With all the guys who had good seasons this year, to beat them out is pretty awesome.
What's the next step for you?
Hopefully just finish the season strong up here and go into spring training hopefully competing for a job. Then hopefully win that job and be here all year next year; obviously that's the ultimate goal, to stay up here. Just go home, have a good off-season and I'm going to go play winter ball, get some more experience down there and come up here with a chance to win a starting job.
If you can rewind back beyond the four home runs with the Mets, is there one moment that sums up your minor league season?
Probably two. There was a game against Erie (on May 6) where I hit three home runs – I think I went 4-for-5 with three homers and six RBI – and I hit two grand slams within like three days of each other (May 30 and June 2, vs. Trenton and Akron). Those were the two, for sure.