Carson Focused On Turning Things Around

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL - Like the rest of the St. Lucie starting rotation, a tough start to the season did not evade Robert Carson. However, the left-hander's struggles in April have given way to better pitching as of late. Now, with the Florida State League All-Star Break behind him, Carson looks forward to a better second half that he hopes will include stronger, more consistent efforts.

Robert Carson has already gone through some growing pains as a pitcher in Port St. Lucie. He started 0-4 on the season, learning quickly that St. Lucie and Savannah have some big differences.

"The batters in Savannah are a little bit more wild. Once you get here they are a lot more disciplined. They know when it'll be a strike or a ball, so having good control and movement really help," Carson explained.

He attributed his continued struggles to a loss of confidence and nerves trying to deal with the adjustment St. Lucie pitching coach, Phil Regan, was there to help Carson work through his issues.

"My progression in the beginning was a little rough I was nervous and started slow. I was trying to figure out some confidence issues and I had a slow start going 0-4. Phil and I got together and worked some things out it helped my focus. Since then its been a lot different for me when I get on the mound," He said.

Phil Regan's name has been brought up in almost every interview with the St. Lucie pitchers. The respect they all have for their coach really shows though. Regan helps his young prospects not only with confidence issues but also with their overall pitching improvement. The Mets are lucky to have his expertise in the bullpen.

"Phil is an amazing coach; working with him really has helped my consistency. Throwing in games continues to build my confidence. You have to go out each night thinking you are the big dog and that you can get anyone out. You know they'll get some hits on you but you have to have that attitude on the mound," Carson stated.

Since the rough start Carson has gone on to even his record up at 4-4 on the season. His increased confidence and general improvement has his ERA hovering at 2.71 during his four wins.

"I've still got my fastball, slider, and change up, but they all have gotten better. I'm throwing harder; the ball is a little heavier for me this season. My command has gotten much better. My slider is my out pitch right now but my change up has gotten real good too. I've gotten a lot more outs with it this season," he revealed.

When asked about his improved composure, the hard throwing left-hander said keeping calm and mentally under control are the keys to success.

"I go back and forth on the mound in my head and settle myself. I take a look and think we're down but we can still win it. I know I'll get hit; its professional baseball and they are some great hitters in this league. You have to take it one batter at a time and keep your focus. I'm a lot better at dealing with it now than I was before," Carson described.

After going through struggles and success Robert Carson has a better idea of what it will take for him to make it at the next level.

"You have to go through adversity in order to keep moving up. You need to overcome adversity. Being a pitcher that's what its all about, building your confidence and pulling through it," He quoted.

Inside Pitch had spent most of the week covering the draft and tracking down the new draftees. Carson was asked how his draft experience went back in 2007.

"My draft experience was great I was coming out of high school and it was exciting. I went to a lot of showcases and played a lot of summer ball. I had thought of going to college and signed with Meridian Community College to play some college ball."

"I got drafted in the 14th round though and it all changed. I was young and I just jumped at the opportunity to do what I love. This was a dream come true and I'm living my dream," Carson exuded.

When asked if he ever regretted not going to college over turning pro, he acknowledged the difficulty of deciding your future at such a young age.

"It was a hard decision; my family and I really talked everything over with my high school coaches. They all said it would be really tough and I needed to make the decision on my own. I love baseball though so it's been a great thing for me. I've never looked back," he explained.

The St. Lucie Mets and the rest of the Florida State League just enjoyed their All-Star Break, giving Carson almost a week off. The pitcher looked forward to the break, but says the team needs to improve in the second half of the season. When asked about his teammates' hitting ability the pitcher admitted to some clubhouse fun and to whom he though was the team's toughest out.

"In spring training we always have a competition between the pitchers and the position players. Whoever wins does some trash talking until the following spring, it's a lot of fun actually."

"Right now Richard Lucas is my toughest out, he was 3-3 with two doubles a single and a walk. He reminds me of it too. I told him if we did it now he wouldn't have a chance. It makes the spring go a little quicker and makes it fun. We bond as a team a lot during the spring and that is a big part of it," he said with a smile.


Amazin Clubhouse Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\nRobert Carson has already gone through some growing pains as a pitcher in Port St. Lucie. He started 0-4 on the season, learning quickly that St. Lucie and Savannah have some big differences.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"The batters in Savannah are a little bit more wild. Once you get here they are a lot more disciplined. They know when it'll be a strike or a ball, so having good control and movement really help,\" Carson explained.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nHe attributed his continued struggles to a loss of confidence and nerves trying to deal with the adjustment St. Lucie pitching coach, Phil Regan, was there to help Carson work through his issues.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"My progression in the beginning was a little rough I was nervous and started slow. I was trying to figure out some confidence issues and I had a slow start going 0-4. Phil and I got together and worked some things out it helped my focus. Since then its been a lot different for me when I get on the mound,\" He said.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nPhil Regan's name has been brought up in almost every interview with the St. Lucie pitchers. The respect they all have for their coach really shows though. Regan helps his young prospects not only with confidence issues but also with their overall pitching improvement. The Mets are lucky to have his expertise in the bullpen.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"Phil is an amazing coach; working with him really has helped my consistency. Throwing in games continues to build my confidence. You have to go out each night thinking you are the big dog and that you can get anyone out. You know they'll get some hits on you but you have to have that attitude on the mound,\" Carson stated.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nSince the rough start Carson has gone on to even his record up at 4-4 on the season. His increased confidence and general improvement has his ERA hovering at 2.71 during his four wins.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've still got my fastball, slider, and change up, but they all have gotten better. I'm throwing harder; the ball is a little heavier for me this season. My command has gotten much better. My slider is my out pitch right now but my change up has gotten real good too. I've gotten a lot more outs with it this season,\" he revealed.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nWhen asked about his improved composure, the hard throwing left-hander said keeping calm and mentally under control are the keys to success.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"I go back and forth on the mound in my head and settle myself. I take a look and think we're down but we can still win it. I know I'll get hit; its professional baseball and they are some great hitters in this league. You have to take it one batter at a time and keep your focus. I'm a lot better at dealing with it now than I was before,\" Carson described.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nAfter going through struggles and success Robert Carson has a better idea of what it will take for him to make it at the next level.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"You have to go through adversity in order to keep moving up. You need to overcome adversity. Being a pitcher that's what its all about, building your confidence and pulling through it,\" He quoted.
\r\n
\r\nInside Pitch had spent most of the week covering the draft and tracking down the new draftees. Carson was asked how his draft experience went back in 2007.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"My draft experience was great I was coming out of high school and it was exciting. I went to a lot of showcases and played a lot of summer ball. I had thought of going to college and signed with Meridian Community College to play some college ball.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"I got drafted in the 14th round though and it all changed. I was young and I just jumped at the opportunity to do what I love. This was a dream come true and I'm living my dream,\" Carson exuded.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nWhen asked if he ever regretted not going to college over turning pro, he acknowledged the difficulty of deciding your future at such a young age.
\r\n
\r\n\r\n\"It was a hard decision; my family and I really talked everything over with my high school coaches. They all said it would be really tough and I needed to make the decision on my own. I love baseball though so it's been a great thing for me. I've never looked back,\" he explained.
\r\n
\r\n\r\nThe St. Lucie Mets and the rest of the Florida State League just enjoyed their All-Star Break, giving Carson almost a week off. The pitcher looked forward to the break, but says the team needs to improve in the second half of the season. When asked about his teammates' hitting ability the pitcher admitted to some clubhouse fun and to whom he though was the team's toughest out.
\r\n
\r\n\"In spring training we always have a competition between the pitchers and the position players. Whoever wins does some trash talking until the following spring, it's a lot of fun actually.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"Right now Richard Lucas is my toughest out, he was 3-3 with two doubles a single and a walk. He reminds me of it too. I told him if we did it now he wouldn't have a chance. It makes the spring go a little quicker and makes it fun. We bond as a team a lot during the spring and that is a big part of it,\" he said with a smile.
\r\n
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