Good times with J.J.

The Orioles made new shortstop J.J. Hardy available on a conference call. Here’s a sampling:

On his reaction to the trade:
“I’m excited about it. I’ve been through this whole getting ready to be traded the last three off-seasons and I’m pretty excited that the Orioles want me.”


On whether he’s familiar with the team:
“I feel like I know a lot of them from playing against them. Mark Reynolds I played against quite a bit, and Luke Scott was another one. Adam Jones, Brian Roberts. I know the faces and know who they are, so I feel like it’ll be easy to get to know one another.”

On his health issues last season:
“Last season was pretty good other than the fact I had a little fluke injury that kind of nagged me the whole year. My left wrist was diagnosed with a bone bruise and basically it never went away. It just kind of bothered me. Right now it feels fine. I haven’t picked up a bat since the end of the season, so I don’t know how that will feel, but I don’t feel like it’s going to bother me. I feel like it just needed a little bit of rest that I didn’t get last season.”

On his expectations for the team:
“Just looking at the roster of the Baltimore Orioles, I think we’re going to be pretty good. And looking at what they did in the second half last year, I think that we’re going to be kind of a team that might fly under the radar and be better than people might expect.”

On whether he has interest in signing an extension:
“I don’t know what’s going to happen. I feel like the last week I’ve been dealing with getting traded. Now I don’t know what the talk’s going to be about extensions or anything like that. For me, I’ve never been offered a multiyear contract in the six years that I’ve played, and I don’t know what would happen if I did. It would be something my agent and I would have to discuss, but we haven’t really talked about it yet.”

On whether he can recapture his power from ‘07 and ‘08:
“There’s no question in my mind that’s what I’m capable of. This last year I felt like would have been a good year for me to do that. I was feeling a lot better. The ‘09 season was a real bad year for me mentally and physically. It was just no good. Last year, I felt like I moved past that and made a lot adjustments in my swing, but a month and a half into the season I got this bone bruise in my left wrist and I felt like it kind of hindered my power swing. But I definitely believe that’s the player that I am and definitely capable of it and I’m kind of looking forward to having a year like that this year.”

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