MESA, Ariz. -- Downstate Illinois native and new Chicago Cub Ben Zobrist answers your Twitter questions from spring training in the 2016 debut of the Cubs' player mailbag series.
#AskZobrist how big of an adjustment do you think it will be to learn NL pitching?
— Curt Lindaas (@CLindaas) February 25, 2016
BZ: The plan is to watch more video early on and get to know the pitchers from that perspective. It'll take a series with each team to get to know their bullpen, their starters, how they want to pitch me, how the ball looks coming out of their hand. Half the battle is getting comfortable with yourself. and with your swing. The early parts of the year tend to be the most difficult to feel my swing, but I've been feeling great this offseason. So I look forward to putting more of the focus on what they're trying to do. If I can do that early I feel I can be successful.
— Daniel Powers (@therealdanpow) February 25, 2016
BZ: Of course. I played in Wausau, Wisconsin, and loved that summer. It was one of the best summers I've ever had in my life. There was a purity to the game up there and in that town. We ended up winning the championship that year after struggling at the end of the regular season. It was a special memory for me.
— Eric Hermansen (@E_Herm519) February 24, 2016
BZ: "The Dawn" by my wife (Julianna, a singer) was the one I had last year. This year I'm probably going to go with one of her songs again. It'll be either "Shatterproof" or "Alive" -- one of those two.
Besides Wrigley, what National League field/ city are you most excited to play on / visit? #AskZobrist
— Section 503 (@Section503) February 24, 2016
BZ: I'm most excited about Wrigley, but outside of that maybe Pittsburgh. It's one field I haven't played on. I've only been to the city one time and I've never played there.
You love God, and show it on and off the field. How did you become so open about your faith in public? Was it always easy? #AskZobrist
— Kurtis Arndt (@KurtisArndt) February 24, 2016
BZ: It's part of who I am. You're supposed to be public about it. But if the private part of your faith isn't intact don't go public with it.
— Uncle Bob (@BoB_2196) February 24, 2016
BZ: I never went to Wrigley until I became a player. I was a Cardinals fan. I went down to St. Louis once a year on my birthday. Usually the Cubs/Cardinals games were too expensive because they were the rivalry and so the prices were higher. We'd watch the Cardinals play against the Padres or some other team.
#AskZobrist Who has impressed you defensively so far this spring?
— Adam Serink (@AdamSerink) February 24, 2016
BZ: It's early still, but Addison Russell for sure. He's real good. Sharp. Fundamental but quick. He has all the tools.
Does Jake's beard feel as good as it looks? #AskZobrist
— Daniel Rogers (@DanielKRogers) February 24, 2016
BZ: I haven't felt it but it's GQ-esque.
#AskZobrist What's the most difficult pitcher you ever faced?
— brdavidbaseball (@brdavidbaseball) February 24, 2016
BZ: Felix Hernandez when he threw the perfect game against us. There was nothing to hit. His splitty was nasty.
#AskZobrist if you are most comfortable at 2B...where is your 2nd most comfortable position?
— Christopher Lattier (@bigclattier) February 24, 2016
BZ: I would say shortstop. I'm a backup there at best. I don't think I'll take many ground balls there.
What's your best Joe Maddon story? #askZobrist
— Max Power (@Max_thePower) February 24, 2016
BZ: Probably in 2012, when we lost in extra innings and Carlos Pena hired a Mariachi band. He didn't think they would allow a Mariachi band into the clubhouse. He asked Joe after the loss and Joe said, 'Bring them in.' So we had a mariachi band play after a loss.
What was the first thing you did after winning the WS? #AskZobrist
— Brandon. (@ChiSports615) February 24, 2016
BZ: The first thing we did was have a baby. That was the only thing to think about at that point. Her middle name is Royal.
#AskZobrist so far, what do you like most about this Cubs team?
— ron swansong (@AaronJWeiss) February 24, 2016
BZ: I like the potential to win the first World Series here in 108 years. That's as good as it gets. This team can do it.