MESA, Ariz. –- Stephen Vogt has faced off against Justin Verlander in the postseason and played in the spotlight of the Major League All-Star Game.
Who would have thought his most stressful sports moments come when he walks through the doors of the Tumwater High School gymnasium every winter?
Vogt’s wife, Alyssa, is the girls basketball coach for the Tumwater High Thunderbirds, a school located just outside of Olympia, Washington. During the A’s offseason, Vogt has plenty of time to experience the flip side of a sporting event -– being in the audience and watching the action unfold, with no control over the outcome.
“It’s really fun for me to sit up in the stands and watch her do what she’s best at,” Vogt said. “I don’t do probably as well as she does watching. I get pretty nervous up there. I’m a nervous wreck. I tell people all the time. They’re like ‘Man, what’s wrong with you?’ I’m like, ‘I don’t know.’ I play 162 baseball games a year, and I’m never as nervous as I am” watching Tumwater games.
There’s no doubt Vogt’s humor and down-to-earth perspective on baseball was shaped in part by his long road just to make it to the majors. We talked about how he managed to survive all of those marathon bus rides in the minor leagues.
I also asked him to shed some light on what the conversations are like on the mound during a pitching change, and how much he notices the “I Believe In Stephen Vogt!” chant when he steps to the plate at the Coliseum.
If you missed previous podcasts I did with Sonny Gray and A’s bench coach Mark Kotsay, go to iTunes and subscribe to “The A’s Insider Podcast with Joe Stiglich.” A new episode is coming each week.