VIRGINIA LOTTERY ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: MATT DAVIS

 

RICHMOND, Va. – After putting up a week of a .500 batting average, going 7-for-14 with a double, home run, five RBI, and four runs scored, Matt Davis helped the VCU Rams baseball team to a three win weekend. Those three wins helped the Black and Gold complete a sweep of Presbyterian College, and helped Davis to being named Virginia Lottery Student-Athlete Player of the Week for the Week of May 9.

"It's pretty important, but we've played pretty well. I think recently, a lot of things have come together. All season, we've figured out a way to win no matter what and it's been really huge for us even when they don't play the greatest games. We still find a way, and we've been on a roll so we'd like to take that into Davidson. The [conference] tournament is next week so we want to have some momentum going into it like we did last year." 

With the ups and downs of the offense throughout a year, it was a breakout performance for the offense at the right time of the season. 

"We just stuck with the process and the approach and just trusted ourselves and knew we'd get the job done. Things just kind of went our way and had some cool things happen with the home runs and stuff like that. We just stayed true with what we've been doing all year and got the results."

 

More in depth with Davis:

 

On the pitching staff's performance this season…. 

"It's great, especially Michael Dailey stepping up. He's been huge, and everyone has been huge. Going into the season, we didn't know what the pitching staff was going to do. They have just set the bar really right. We had high expectations, but we didn't know what we were going to get. I think they have done a phenomenal job and kept us in a lot of games this year. Now a lot of other guys are stepping up. Luke Crabb threw really well this weekend when he got the opportunity to start on Sunday, which was good to see. A lot of other guys have been throwing, a lot of new guys. You've seen Jamer and Donko in the back end, and they are great back there."

 

On batting in the middle of the order…. 

"It helps me relax a little bit. You know, when everyone in the lineup one through nine is performing well and putting up good at-bats, it takes the pressure off yourself when you are up to bat. It helps you loosen up a bit, and doesn't have you try to do too much. Right now, that's kind of what is going on and it helps when other guys are getting multi-hit games. It makes it easy when you come up to bat, because you feel like if you can't do the job, they will do the job. That builds confidence and comfort in the lineup for sure."

 

Any pregame rituals or superstitions…. 

"Not really. I probably do something I don't even realize I do. I guess I just stick to the process in the way I prepare for a game such as they way I change, stuff like that. I know I listen to the same playlist when I go to the game, it's basically a party playlist. I was doing well one weekend after listening to it so I kept it going. In the game, I just do stuff over and over. I kind of have a routine in the on-deck circle. I have to swing the bat a certain way and I have to do something with my batting gloves. Other than that, nothing too crazy."

 

What's on your mind when you go to the plate…. 

"Nothing really. Obviously I have to have some idea with what I'm going to do at the plate. Really the big thing for me is just have confidence when I go up, being able to do what I need to do to get the job done and help the team."

 

Guys on the team that help you relax before a game…

'Definatly Granny [Alex Gransback]. He's my guy on the top of the list. That guy, no matter what the situation is, he can always make you laugh. Even when you don't need to joke around, he jokes around. But he defiantly lightens the mood in the dugout but at the same time he is a leader.  People gravitate toward him because people trust him and respect him and that's kind of cool to see. [Sam] Donko is also the same way. You see him running around in the outfield during BP chasing fly balls. Like the other day he robbed Dylan Isquirdo of a home run at Presbyterian so that was funny. Just guys like that lighten the mood before a game and keep things relaxed."

 

Who'd make the best bobble head…. 

"Probably Logan [Farrar] because of his hair. It would be cool to see how that with work on a bobble head."

 

Most quotable on the team…. 

"Well, a lot of the guys quote movies, like Cooper [Mickelson], Jimmy [Kerrigan], and Walker [Haymaker]. They quote movies a lot and it's funny. But the person people quote the most is probably Logan [Farrar]. Some of the stuff he says we have no idea what it means and he knows that. We screw around with him. Granny made a thing on his phone freshman year and it was like a list of "Stuff Logan Says" and we quoted him."

 

Favorite Color… 

"Red or Blue. More Blue."

 

MLB Ballpark you'd like to step in the batter's box at… 

"Camden Yards probably. I grew up an Orioles fan, and my dad was an Orioles fan. I grew up a Cal Ripken Jr. fan. So to be able to take a swing in that ballpark would be one of the coolest things ever."

 

Any current MLB you'd like to step in the box against…. 

"Heck, I'll face Jake Arrieta I guess. I'll face one of the best pitchers right now."

 

Do you get a hit…. 

"I'd like to think so. At least get something on it."

 

It's time for Netflix: Movies or TV Shows…. 

"I'll watch movies. But weekly, the roommates and I will watch "The Blind Spot" on NBC. I was also watching "Better Call Saul" which is a follow-up to "Breaking Bad". The roommates and I also watch "The Black List" on NBC so weekly we do that. I haven't binge-watched shows on Netflix in a while. "

 

Ideal go-to meal…

"The meal is defiantly going to have barbeque chicken in it of some sort, whether it is going to have rice or potatoes. But chicken is my favorite food."

 

What about at the ballpark…. 

"Hot Dog and a soda. At Camden Yards they have this thing….I forget what it's called, but it's a hot dog with crab on top of it. It's a pretty crazy hot dog."

 

Who's poster of any teammate (past or present) would you put up on your wall…. 

"I'd probably say Vimael [Machin]. When I came in as a freshman, he was a junior and I've always looked up to him. I was his roommate on the road for two years, played in the infield with him for two years. So I looked up to him and learned a lot from him. Hopefully I can follow in his footsteps and play at the professional level too. I'm a fan, and it would be a daily reminder of how hard you have to work."

 

Favorite spot in Richmond….

"Probably Belle Isle down at James River. I don't get to go there often, but when you do, it's really nice."