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Catching up with Dontrelle Willis who is, once again, on the comeback trail

Feb 21, 2013, 6:38 AM EDT

Washington Nationals v Baltimore Orioles Getty Images

Patrick Mooney of has an in-depth interview with Dontrelle Willis. Who is still attempting to make it back to the bigs, even though his “comeback,” for lack of a better term, has now lasted longer than the actual productive part of his career.

The difference: Willis sounds relaxed and at peace these days. Far more than he was during his short and stormy stint with the Orioles last year or even his brief stops with the Phillies, Diamondbacks and Reds:

Willis has been working out at HoHoKam Stadium. He said he was told he’s been hitting 91-92 mph during his bullpen sessions, though he doesn’t put much stock in the JUGS gun or believe he needs to pitch with maximum velocity. He said it doesn’t matter whether he’s used as a starter or a reliever.

“Baseball’s like life,” Willis said. “You have to trust what you have. You are who you are and be happy. And if they don’t like it, f—‘em, you know what I mean? That’s what it boils down to. You have to be honest with yourself.

In addition to where he is today, Willis offers his memories of the 2003 playoffs, including the Steve Bartman game and walking in to Yankee Stadium for the World Series. Which, surprisingly enough, he said was way easier than dealing with Wrigley Field.

Good read.

  1. flosox - Feb 21, 2013 at 7:13 AM

    If the D-Train is going to make a successful comeback, he better go see Doc Brown for some of that special fuel he made to get Marty out of 1888 in Back to the Future III.

    And by fuel I mean roids and by doc brown I mean Bosch and by Back to the Future III I mean worst movie in the franchise.

    • polonelmeagrejr - Feb 21, 2013 at 9:56 AM

      HE was right on the verge of being a Halladay type star when the air went out of the balloon. ALways kind of liked him.

  2. ahuophfe - Feb 21, 2013 at 7:20 AM

    Reblogged this on bnfblogs.

  3. dondada10 - Feb 21, 2013 at 7:43 AM

    Dontrelle Willis is the reason teams should go year by year with their arbitration eligible pitchers. You never know when they’ll fall off a cliff.

    • Old Gator - Feb 21, 2013 at 8:38 AM

      It would help if they chased fewer roadrunners.

  4. Cereal - Feb 21, 2013 at 8:45 AM

    He’s just awful…he’s earning checks b/c he’s a name. He’ll get shelled against the Sudan’s national team at this point. I hope he was smart with his money

    • genericcommenter - Feb 21, 2013 at 9:00 AM

      He earnED checks because of his name, but I doubt he’s being paid much these days. It’s not like he’s signing big deals or blocking any hot prospects.

  5. Old Gator - Feb 21, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    Might be a good time to start looking for work as a pitching coach.

    • royhobbs39 - Feb 21, 2013 at 10:18 AM

      The way he threw up that leg, he might have a better chance getting a job as a chorus line dancer than he would as a pitching coach.

    • derklempner - Feb 21, 2013 at 4:28 PM

      Actually, I think he should pull an Ankiel and think about moving to a position player. He’s a pretty good hitter who could contribute if he can make the transition to a corner outfield spot (or first base).

  6. jm91rs - Feb 21, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    This guy was very solid for the Reds. He didn’t get a chance until later in the season when some injuries opened up a spot for him, but he pitched very well that season. He had something like 9 or 10 quality starts in 14 tries, just not many wins because the Reds bats went cold every time he took the mound. I’m surprised he fell apart again after that season, it has to be mental, he had very few injuries and keeps falling apart.

  7. riverace19 - Feb 21, 2013 at 10:18 AM

    He is turning into Kenny Powers 2.0

  8. anxovies - Feb 21, 2013 at 7:29 PM

    What the hell is HoHoKam Stadium and why would any tam with a sherd of dignity play there? Oh, it’s the Cubs.

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