Q and A With the ‘Batting Stance Guy’

1. Briefly describe yourself, and what you do, to those who may not know.

I possess the least marketable skill in America of imitating most every baseball hitter in the past 30 years.

 2. When did the idea/desire to imitate MLB players batting stances come about?

As young as I can remember. I went for Halloween in 1980 as Pete Rose. I was 7. I grew up going to Oakland A’s games when they featured lineups of Rickey Henderson, Carney Lansford, Dave Kingman, Joe Morgan, Mickey Tettleton and Tony Phillips. All zany stances in my book.

 3. Why take the time to memorize and imitate players batting stances at all?

Good question, Matt. I didn’t set out to memorize them. For some reason my brain captures the stuff I love. And I love baseball. Only way to explain it is there are a lot of song lyrics we all know that we never decided to memorize.

 4. How many total batting stances can you imitate?

I’ve been asked this before, especially when Sony Playstation had me do the motion-capture for MLB The Show. I’ve never counted. I don’t have a list, but probably most starters since 1979. Could be 500? Could be 1,000? Honestly don’t know. A dozen times a MLB team has invited me into the middle of the team stretching circle. The players will call out names and have me clown each player. I’ve received requests of players I’ve never considered imitating….so the list is probably long if I actually had one.

 5. Which players batting stance is your favorite to imitate?

My favorite is whichever one makes people laugh. MLB players laugh hardest for Kevin Youkilis and Hunter Pence. Fans love Derek Jeter and Rickey Henderson. I love three that most people don’t request: Ben Oglivie, Moises Alou and Gary Matthews Sr, “The Sarge.”

 6. Who’s your favorite person that you’ve met since you began doing this?

David Letterman. My brain could understand meeting a few players and coaches but when The Late Show wanted me on as a guest..that was out of the blue.

 7. Talk a little about your book ‘Batting Stance Guy: A Love Letter To Baseball’.

It is a love letter to baseball framed around the greatest 50 stances of my lifetime. It’s more a journey through my life of loving baseball and getting rejected by girls than it is about how much Gary Sheffield wiggles his bat. There is first hand account from every stadium and funny art work. I’m really proud of it. Even received letters about it from Ken Burns, George Will and three supreme court justices.

 8. How did you narrow the vast number of batting stances down to 50 for the book?

Scribner (an imprint of Simon & Schuster) had an idea of a fun paperback book about that size so 50 seemed like a good round number. But it did mean Matt Diaz and Carl Crawford just missed the cut.

 9. How long can you see yourself imitating batting stances of MLB players?

To be honest, I had no reason to think it would last more than that first year these video entered the world (2008). Teams kept having me out, and players like it and are familiar with the videos. Now MLB Network is having me do SNL Digital Short-ish spoof segments for Intentional Talk. However, mostly imitating announcers and players talking, not their swings. The whole thing has been the most fun I’ve ever enjoyed around baseball. In fact, the last locker room I was in, the players called “Let us hear Tim Kurkjian discussing Darwin Barney.” That was a first. 

What a country.


Big thanks to Gar Ryness, the ‘Batting Stance Guy’, for answering my questions.

Be sure to visit his website: battingstanceguy.com

Also, follow him on twitter: @BattingStanceG


Your Questions Answered-The Answers

Remember a few blog entries ago when I said that I wanted your questions for a new blog series that I wanted to do on Mondays? Well, this week I chose the question submitted by Delia. Her question was, “What’s their favorite thing to do on an off day?” So I spent the past few days asking MLB players that very question. Here’s what the players, that responded, had to say:

JOSE MOLINA–Toronto Blue Jays 

“Rest and spend time with family.”

GEOFF BLUM–Arizona Diamondbacks

“Golf or beach.”

VANCE WORLEY–Philadelphia Phillies

“Chill and let my body relax. Call friends and family back home.”

DAVID PRICE–Tampa Bay Rays

“Sit on the couch playin’ FIFA with astro.”

DANIEL HUDSON–Arizona Diamondbacks


DAVID AARDSMA–Seattle Mariners

“Right now it’s hang by the pool.”

CRAIG BRESLOW–Oakland Athletics

“On off days I catch up on work for my charity, the Strike3Foundation, sleep, iChat with family/friends, and relax.”

JOSH LUEKE–Seattle Mariners

“Hang out and sleep.”

DENARD SPAN–Minnesota Twins

“On the field I like to play baseball. LOL. And off the field I like to relax [and] go to the mall. LOL”

RYAN ROBERTS–Arizona Diamondbacks

“It’s always different. At home I like to go to the pool with my daughter and hangout with the family cuz I don’t see them.”

ZACH BRITTON–Baltimore Orioles

“I like to hang out and maybe watch a movie.”

JEREMY GUTHRIE–Baltimore Orioles

“Depends where I am. But I love to explore a city on a bike more than anyone I know. Truly blessed to travel as much as we do.”

R.A. DICKEY–New York Mets

“Be with my family.”

DAVID HUFF–Cleveland Indians

“Catch up on my movies.”

BUD NORRIS–Houston Astros

“Relax with family and friends, golf, or sleep. LOL”

SAM LECURE–Cincinnati Reds

“Just kinda depends on where I’m at. Sometimes, nothing. We don’t get too many so I try to make sure not to screw it up.”

ANTHONY BASS–San Diego Padres

“Besides sleep, Call of Duty Black Ops for PS3.”

LATROY HAWKINS–Milwaukee Brewers

“Go home to see the family.”

JAKE ARRIETA–Baltimore Orioles

“Late breakfast, nap, bike ride.”

RICH THOMPSON–Los Angeles Angels

“Spend it with my family.”

SHAWN KELLEY–Seattle Mariners

“Family time.”


“Watch a movie and BBQ.”

MATT MALONEY–Cincinnati Reds

“Spend time with my wife and dogs.”

CESAR RAMOS–Tampa Bay Rays

“People watch at Starbucks.”

BRAD PENNY–Detroit Tigers


DEXTER FOWLER–Colorado Rockies

“Sleep as long as I want.”

DAVID HERNANDEZ–Arizona Diamondbacks

 “Play Playstation and spend time with my family.”

ZACH DUKE–Arizona Diamondbacks

 “Depends on the weather.”

PAUL MAHOLM–Pittsburgh Pirates

“Play golf with lil guy and wife riding along.”

JASON GRILLI–Pittsburgh Pirates

“Just spend time with my family. Doesn’t matter what we do. QT is just good enough for me.”

YONDER ALONSO–Cincinnati Reds

“Movies and sleep.”

GIO GONZALEZ–Oakland Athletics

“I like to visit amusement parks when I have time.”


Now that you see that I can in fact get MLB players to answer your question, I hope more people submit one for next Monday’s entry.

Leave a comment below with your question that you want to have answered by MLB players. After a few days I’ll select one of them to use for next time…..

Your Questions Answered

I’m starting a new weekly entry series. Every Monday (starting this Monday) I’m going to post the answers to your *generic* questions to MLB players. There’s no guarantee as to how many players will answer, or which ones, but I’ll try to get as many to answer as possible.

So leave a comment with a generic question that you’d like to have answered by some MLB players. From the ones that are submited, I’ll choose one to get players to answer throughout the week, and then post the answers each Monday, and ask for new questions. And so on, and so forth.

Does this all make sense? If so, leave a comment with your questions. I *may* just choose yours…….


Considering the fact that Monday is just three days away, I’m going to go ahead use Delia’s question.

Maybe I’ll get more questions submissions next week.