- Jesse Rogers, ESPN Staff Writer
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ST. LOUIS -- He returns to St. Louis for the second time since leaving the Cardinals and signing with the Chicago Cubs, and this time reliever Jason Motte is closing games again. Before he takes the field on Friday night he answers your questions in this edition of our player mailbag:
— Hugo Stiglitz (@jfahr) June 25, 2015
Jason Motte: It's not devil magic. They just play hard. They have a belief they are going to win that game. We're starting to have that as well but they've had it for a long time. That was the mindset when I was there. It's all about the mindset.
— Barry Bradford (@Barry1776) June 25, 2015
JM: There really aren't that many days where you know you're not going to pitch so I usually prepare the same way every day. A couple innings before I might get in I have a weighted ball I'm playing with down there. Maybe some shoulder stuff, stretch a little bit and wait for the phone to ring.
Best heckle/fan interaction down in bullpen...? #AskMotte
— e.k. (@m1ghtycra5h) June 25, 2015
JM: For the most part the fans are pretty good. There are a few places where they are bad but I won't mention those because I'll get booed there even more. Usually if you talk to them it's pretty normal, friendly stuff.
— Richard Pugh (@richardpslu) June 25, 2015
JM: In St. Louis my place is Pappy's Smoke House, in Memphis where I live in the offseason I like Germantown Commissary. I went to Pappy's last time and someone mentioned Smoke in Chicago. We went to that. I've been there once or twice, it was pretty good.
— Blake G. Kielman (@BlakeKielman) June 25, 2015
JM: We had a couple good ones in the dugout the other day. Two claps and a Wooo! David Ross did a good one and there were a couple guys behind me I don't know who they were but we've had some good ones. Rossy is the best.
— Art Finch (@FinchFactor23) June 25, 2015
JM: I don't know where it started but we try not to move when foul balls come down. We just hold our ground and wear it. (Justin) Grimm is a little girl about it. (Bullpen catcher) Chad Noble won't move. I took one the other day in the shin so I won't move. It's usually the guys that sit on the chairs so me, James Russell, Travis Wood and Noble.
— Dan Welter (@Dan_Welter) June 24, 2015
JM: Um, I'd probably say Lester. He has a better swing but he has more at-bats. I think I'm 0-for-5 in my career with four punchouts. I think my strikeout rate is higher than his so I guess I'd say him. But neither one of us has a hit yet so it's hard to say.
— LeBlanc (@TigerBait16) June 25, 2015
JM: Ha. No, I don't really have a ritual. I'll touch my leg or my hat but there is no rhyme or reason to what it is. It's just random acts. There is no one thing I do or something I have to do a certain way.