Turn 2 With "Mario Hol": Mario Holmann's Notebook

Mario Holmann is one of the Yankee's most exciting prospects in the farm system, contributing stolen bases, acrobatic plays, and a dose of energy at the top of the lineup. Mario is keeping a journal throughout 2005 to keep the readers of PinstripesPlus.com updated on his progress.

Well, these past 2 weeks here in Tampa have been almost the same everyday. So I really don't have too many things to tell you. Last week, all the new guys that are going to play extended spring came to town. Like 20 new guys showed up. Most of them are from the Dominican Republic, and the rest are from Venezuela and just one from Nicaragua besides me.

We played intrasquad games last week and I did well because I was making solid contact and playing good defense. But, on Saturday I started to feel more pain in my left wrist. Well, actually I have been playing with a sore wrist this entire time but last Saturday I couldn't handle it anymore because the pain got worse. So I told the trainers and they told me to shut it down for a couple of days and just rest and get treatment. And that's what I have been doing since Saturday. I get to the complex in the morning and I go directly to the hot whirlpool to get some heat in my wrist, then some ultrasound and finally some exercises to gain strength in those muscles.

To make sure everything was fine, they did an MRI on me on Wednesday, and Thank God everything was fine. I got diagnosed with a bone bruise. When I heard that I was really happy because I really don't want to miss more games, and I want to start playing as soon as possible. So the trainers told me today that, for the rest of this week, we would keep doing the same thing that I have been doing so far to make sure we complete the healing process. On Monday, I will start hitting again, and hopefully start playing on Wednesday with no pain in my wrist.

Now, I am going to answer some of the questions of the past 2 weeks.

Fan#1: Who is going to be coaching you in extended?

Mario: Coach Ducey. He is new in the Yankee organization, but he knows a lot and he is really a nice guy and he knows how to treat us. And the good thing is that he is always telling us to play the game hard and to play the game the way it is supposed to be played. If somebody doesn't do that, well too bad for him. He will be watching the game from the bench. For me that's good because I know I have to give my best in every game if I want to be in that lineup.

Fan#2: Do you think that playing in extended will improve your game in the long run?

Mario: Yes I do, because here I have all the coaches and coordinators trying to help me so I am really sure I am going to get better and become a better hitter and make the adjustments they want for me to make. And also, here we practice a lot; we start at 9 am and finish our practices and games around 5 pm. And just like it is always said, the only way to get better is practicing and I think if I keep practicing 8 hours per day I am going to get better in every aspect of the game.

Fan#3: How are you doing with your new stance?

Mario: Before I got hurt, I was doing well. I felt that I was hitting with more power and making solid contact. And also hitting the ball on the ground and that's what they want from me. So it is so far so good.

Well, that's it for now. It is good to know that I have so many fans behind me so I am happy to answer any questions you may have along the way. Contact the site at PinstripesPlus@aol.com and the questions will be answered in an upcoming journal. Thanks again to all my fans!

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