All-Star Matt Harrison credits mental coach

July, 2, 2012
Why is left-handed starting pitcher Matt Harrison an American League All-Star? Think about it. He is the AL’s co-leader with 11 wins, and the Texas Rangers are 12-4 on the days that he has started this season. When Harrison thinks about why he is an All-Star, it goes deeper than having a pitching repertoire that has led to successful results.

Rangers All-Star pitcher Matt Harrison talks about the mental side of the game and more.

Listen Listen
“I’ve been doing a lot of work with Don Kalkstein on the mental side of the game. He’s gotten me into a better program in-between innings and thoughts on the field. He’s got me more locked in,” Harrison said. “Even though you are going out there with the same stuff, you might not be going out there with the right mentality.”

Harrison was a guest on Rangers Baseball Tonight, the radio pregame show on the Texas Rangers ESPN Radio Network. Harrison credited Kalkstein, who is the Rangers sports psychology consultant. This is his first season with the Rangers, and he also works with the Dallas Mavericks.

Harrison’s greatest mental hurdle in this All-Star first half occurred in late April/early May.

“I think it was not letting ... after my first three starts, those two bad ones ... letting it get to my head and dampening my confidence,” Harrison said of the two-start stretch where he gave up 15 runs (14 earned) and 22 hits in 8 1/3 innings against the Tampa Bay Rays and Toronto Blue Jays.

Harrison talks about more about making the All-Star team, how his manager and pitching coach informed him of his All-Star status, his season goals, more about the mental side of the game, last year’s World Series and whether he should start the All-Star Game. Listen to the podcast.

Follow Bryan Dolgin on Twitter: @RangersESPN_BD.



You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?


Fitzsimmons and Durrett: Jon Daniels

Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.

Galloway & Company: Nolan Ryan

Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss having Nelson Cruz back in the lineup and how the Rangers are feeling heading into their wild-card play-in game against the Rays.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Jim Bowden

ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.

Fitzsimmons and Durrett: Chuck Cooperstein

Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.

Galloway & Company: Elvis Andrus

Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.

Galloway & Company: Nolan Ryan

Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Ron Washington

Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Fire Wash?

Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.


Martin Perez
3 1.86 20 29
BAA. Rios .333
HRP. Fielder 2
RBIA. Rios 10
RE. Andrus 11
OPSS. Choo .895
ERAY. Darvish 0.82
SOY. Darvish 23