John Mollicone about his time in the Rays organization. See Part 1 here.
RaysProspects: What do you remember about your 3rd and final season, with the Bowling Green Hot Rods?
John Mollicone: The best time I had in pro ball. A bunch of us had apartments in the same complex so we were a pretty tight knit team. The highlight for me was getting the South Atlantic League Player of the Week Honors. Playing time usually came every 3rd, 4th, or 5th game but someone was injured at the time and I was able to start a few games in a row and I just went off. I think I went 4-5 one night, with 2 homeruns, 2 doubles, and then the next night I hit a grand slam. It's funny how things like that work, not playing much to getting on a hot streak. But I was always ready to play, so it wasn't really a surprise to me.
RP: I've heard lots of interesting stories about road trips and the long bus rides, any good (clean) ones?
JM: Jeez, thats a good question. I remember a trip we took in Bowling Green after a night game to New Jersey. I think it took something like 18 hours, but we had a nice bus with beds in it. Everyone always wants to get a seat to themselves or in this case a bed for them self. I had caught that night and was determined to get a bed and for some reason I didn't realize the bus had gotten there yet when a stampede of my teammates took off for it. So naturally I started running, with my catchers bag, my travel bag, and I think I had BP balls that trip, and as soon as I started I tripped over myself and slammed face first into the gravel parking lot.
But the bus rides were one of my favorite times looking back on them, not only in pro ball but college as well. Just hanging out and busting balls with your teammates is always a good time. One of my favorite things to do was yell peoples names from the back of the bus, and ask dumb questions to our trainer or strength coach. Asking what time it is over and over again cracks me up for some reason, when the person doesn't know who's yelling it at them.
RP: You were released in March of 2010. You were only 24 years old at the time and catchers are always in demand, did you consider trying to hook on with another organization or indy ball?
JM: Yes, I did. I spoke with a couple of indy teams after I was released. I thought I was going to catch on with a team around my home, but there was a lack of communication and I had already began thinking about starting my own business and getting into the business world. Eventually the team reached out to me and asked if I wanted to play but I had already made up my mind to move on at that point.
RP: Do you have any interest in coaching (pro, indy, college, high school)?
JM: I think so. I don't see myself coaching a team for a few years, but I have already started doing individual lessons and classes at the Rhode Island Baseball Institute. I think its normal to miss the game but teaching what I know to kids helps me deal with that in a good way.
Stay tuned for Part 3 of our interview, and make sure to check out John's online store.
For past RP interviews please see:
Interview With John Mollicone - Part 1
Ex-Rays: Catching Up With John Mollicone
John Sickels On The Rays
Questions and Answers: Stephen Vogt