Daily Dad News
MLB First Baseman Matt Clark Learned Patience From His Father
March 5, 2012
As spring training camps in Major League Baseball pop up around the country, many players looking to leave smaller farm leagues for the big stages have a lot of competition to face. For one player, however, he isn’t worried about when he’ll get his chance to go to the majors – a trait he learned from his former MLB player father.
Left-handed first baseman Matt Clark is vying for a shot to make the San Diego Padres main roster as he trudges through spring games with the Cactus League, but he’s learned that nothing comes easy in pro baseball by way of his father, Terry. Terry pitched for six teams over the course of seven seasons, a fact Matt uses to keep himself motivated.
I've been in the clubhouse since I was a little kid," Clark said to MLB.com. "And just seeing what he went through, he played 20 years [professionally] but only six in the big leagues, all the highs and all the lows, all of the surgeries, you see how he handled it.”
Just 25 years of age, Matt has witnessed historic moments as a result of his father’s short big league career. Matt was in the Baltimore Orioles clubhouse, where his dad pitched, when legendary Hall Of Famer shortstop Cal Ripken Jr. broke the most consecutive games (2,131) played record formerly held by Lou Gehrig for 56 years.
“Being in that clubhouse, seeing how all of that happened, it's something that I'll never forget," Clark said. "My dad pitched in game 2,131, and we have that game ball at home.”
Although Matt Clark may be the fourth first baseman for a loaded Padres squad, he’s put up great numbers and he’s continuing his quest to follow his father’s footsteps into the big leagues.
"Just keep doing what I've been doing. I guess you have to be patient sometimes even though it's not fun. You got to keep putting in your work, and hope you get a chance to show people what you can do, and hopefully get a chance to play in the big leagues," said Matt Clark.
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