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Baseball Veteran Brings Wisdom and Faith to the Yankees

World Series Champion Matt Holiday is a New York Yankee, helping mentor the team’s young, emerging talent and contributing as a hitter in their surprising playoff push. Read Transcript


INTERVIEWER: Matt Holliday is baseball's esteemed clubhouse

leader.

The World Series champion, seven time all-star,

and one time batting champ, has made

a career of pushing his teams toward success.

14 years.

Has that flown?

Yeah, I think some days, it feels like it has flown.

And some days, it feels like it's been a long time.

But I try to just day-to-day it and try to keep

it as simple as possible.

And I look at pictures of when I started,

and you start thinking about how long it has been.

And some of the first teams that I was on,

that hardly any of them are still playing,

it's been a cool progression.

INTERVIEWER: The progression continues

with this fourth team, now, as a New York Yankee.

Playing in Yankee Stadium, wearing a Yankee uniform,

does it make baseball look different for you?

No, not really.

I feel like having a chance to play

for another storied franchise than the St. Louis Cardinals--

that's sort of the Yankees of the National League,

if you will-- and I played in the stadium.

I played against the Yankees.

My grandfather was a huge Yankees fan.

So there was some ties that made putting

this uniform on really cool.

But when it comes to trying to play the best of my ability,

I'm pretty used to that.

But is there some cool vibe of playing at the Yankee stadium?

Sure.

With a clubhouse, full of its youth, exceeding expectations,

you're running with this momentum?

I've really enjoyed the season so far.

The guys have been great.

Coming from a place that I had been for eight years

to a new place was a little challenge for me personally.

And I've really enjoyed it.

And really, the guys have embraced me.

And I've been able to have a cool place in the team

spiritually with our Bible studies and our chapels.

For a lot of these younger players,

what's the most common thing you hear

that is something they need?

I think the struggle of not doing

well or just the day to day failure that

comes with baseball is hard.

Guys look for avenues different places to get relief from that.

It's a hard game, especially in the bright lights of New York

City.

And dealing with the pressure that comes along

with performance and not having Jesus as the center of that,

it can be rough.

And trying to find and turn to different things.

How do you manage the pressure of performance?

Do I deal with 0 for fours perfectly?

No.

Having a relationship with Jesus and recognizing

that my performance is not representative of how much he

loves me and just being able to go out

here and trust and the fact that I'm where I'm supposed to be,

doing what I'm supposed to be doing,

and being able to separate this and go home and be

a good husband and try to be a good father

and help them understand what God's love looks like.

That's a huge, tremendous responsibility for me

that I take very serious.

And I think God has moved me in the right way in a lot of ways

with how to deal with that.

What makes being a leader in a clubhouse any different

when leadership is required to build up

trust and relationship?

It starts with being yourself.

You earn that title by how you treat

people, how you go about your business, how you work.

You know, obviously, experience helps.

You get to know guys and really care about them.

You relishing the mentoring?

I do I love it.

There's guys here that are new spiritually and still learning,

as am I. But just being able to contribute to things that I've

learned about interpreting scripture and being

able to talk to them about what God

is saying in certain passages has been really helpful for me.

Getting the word every day and starting my day

with chewing on scripture and having that center in my life.

You know, I think, in Timothy, when

he talks about leadership-- and being in church,

church leadership is everywhere.

So this is my church.

And it's for everybody's church.

We're living our lives and leading people and loving

people.

Like I said, I'm an older player here.

And leadership is part of I think the value that I bring.

Man, I didn't call you old.

No, I--

Now that I'm looking at these, I didn't call you old.

No, I don't feel old.

Age-- in baseball years, maybe I'm old,

but I feel pretty good.

Yeah, that's the prayer, man.

Just make sure that I'm open to be used.

If he wants to use me, then I'm available.

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