Impromptu Birthday Celebration for Shaun Marcum
In my six years here with the Brewers, I cannot remember a press conference turning into a birthday celebration, but that is what happened today at Miller Park. In preparation for today’s Shaun Marcum introductory press conference, it occured to me and my Media Relations Department counterparts that it was Marcum’s 29th birthday today. We thought it would be a good idea to have a cake at the press conference to make sure Shaun and his wife Stephanie felt welcome on their first visit to Milwaukee as a member of the organization (and, well, who doesn’t like cake?).
Media Relations Director Mike Vassallo and I ran to the grocery store this morning, found a sheet cake and had the bakery department make a special inscription.
The finished product.
Marcum cuts the first piece of cake.
As you can see the cake turned out great. Marcum cut the first piece and shared it with his wife and I’m sure leftovers of the cake are floating around our offices (hint, hint, Loge Level breakroom) right now. I had a piece and judging from the way it tasted, it will be gone pretty quickly.
Marcum poses for his official Brewers headshot.
Marcum flew in from his home in Kansas City last night and had lunch with Brewers Executive Vice President-General Manager Doug Melvin prior to the press conference today. He talked about returning to the Midwest not far from his Kansas City home to play was “a dream come true.”
Melvin helps Marcum put on his Brewers jersey for the first time in his career.
Marcum took questions from the media for about 20 minutes after being introduced by Melvin.
“One of our offseason goals was to acquire more pitching for our ball club,” Melvin said before introducing Marcum. “Prior to going to the Winter Meetings, we had some activity going on, but this came as a little bit of a surprise to us to be able to get a player of Shaun Marcum’s abilities. We feel he can fit in with the top of our rotation which is really needed. He gives us a better chance of winning than we had prior to the Winter Meetings.”
Marcum missed the entire 2009 season due to Tommy John surgery and said he finished the 2010 season stronger than ever.
“Recovering from the injury was a long process,” Marcum said. “For me to get fully recovered took about 18 months, some people have gotten back quicker, but at the same time, I got to do a lot of film watching, get my body in better shape and get me shoulder stronger. When it came September, I felt stronger at that point in the season that I did in April and during the All-Star Break. When I’m on the mound it’s (the injury) not something that I even think of. I’m focused on getting hitters out.”
He finished the 2010 season with a 13-8 record alongside a 3.64 ERA with Toronto in probably one of the toughest disivions (the AL East) in all of baseball. He also pitched a career-high 195.1 innings in last season.
Following the press conference, Marcum signed some baseball cards for the Brewers front office and did a number of radio interviews before leaving for the airport to return home to Kansas City.
As you can tell from the photos, Marcum will wear number 18 for the Brewers. He wore number 28 last season with Toronto.
Stay tuned to brewers.com as we will be posting the full video from the press conference a little bit later this afternoon.