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Andrew Lambo: Pirates Giving Him A Chance ‘Instills A Lot Of Confidence’ In Him

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BRADENTON (93-7 The Fan) – Pirates first baseman Andrew Lambo sat down with The Fan Morning Show at Pirates spring training on Monday to chat about his off season and the team’s preparation for the 2014 season.

Here is some of what he had to say:

On the vibe he’s getting in Bradenton:
“It’s been a pretty laid back atmosphere. I don’t really feel any pressure or any heat from the fans or anything like that.”

On the opportunity he is getting this season:
“You gotta be able to take advantage of them. You can’t just be given opportunities. You gotta earn them, and you gotta take advantage of them. That’s what I’m trying to do here. I was given an opportunity like this. When you’ve got an organization that believes in you and doesn’t go looking for somebody else, it’s a positive. It shows that they believe that you can do the job. So that’s why, in a sense, there’s no pressure. I’m eager and excited to show everybody and show people why they’re believing in me.”

On the Pirates searching for an upgrade at first base this offseason:
“They feel like they needed to get better, but we felt that we didn’t really need to go outside our organization to get better, and, you know, like I said before, it’s a lot of confidence. It instills a lot of confidence, so you want to go out and work that much harder, and get that much better.”

On how much attention he paid to the team’s search for a first baseman:
“I was in Venezuela, so I didn’t know what was going on over here (laughs). But, no, I mean, of course, you get the family updates. My father, and my sister, and my buddies will tell me more information than I actually look up. I really don’t bother too much to look at what they’re doing. Controlling stuff you can’t control is pretty much useless, so I don’t really bother looking at it.”

On playing winter ball in Venezuela:
“It’s unfortunate because there’s a lot of great people in that country, fortunately, I met a lot of nice people on my team, but, you know, the crowd is very hostile down there, and they take baseball seriously. So going over there and getting my reps in, I feel like, really benefited me, to come over here with a slower pulse and heartbeat, and kind of slow things down, because over there it’s pretty- it’s real. They love their baseball. Every game is a game seven World Series-type atmosphere.”

On the Pirates taking their time before finally calling him up last season:
“[Earlier in my career] I had some skids and some ups and downs. So you want to try to instill that consistency in management and [the] organization. So I felt like I needed to continue to develop that consistency and show them that I can continually hit throughout the year. I think that’s what they wanted to see. And at the end of the day, they know when to call people up and when not to. That’s what they get paid for, and we get paid to play.”

On the bumps earlier in his career and how he’s turned things around:
“I’ve played so long in this game, it just tears you up, it spits you out. So you just gotta take it and you gotta look at it from a different perspective of just, be happy and be thankful for what you have. You got a jersey on your back, and about a couple years ago I was in a cast wondering if I was good enough. You get a lot of doubts. That’s why I wake up and it’s just, happy to be playing, happy to be going to the field every day.”

The entire interview can be heard here:

The Fan Morning Show will be broadcasting live from Pirates spring training in Bradenton every day this week. Listen to them live 5:40-10 a.m. and visit 937thefan.com to get interview summaries and audio after the show.

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