Bouchard Back In The Game

Bouchard is healthy for the first time in 2 years

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL – In 2009, Matt Bouchard was slated as the everyday second baseman in Binghamton. However, his upward path was derailed by a series of a hip injuries and surgeries. Now, the infielder is in St. Lucie where he hopes health and productivity will get him back on the right track.

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Matt Bouchard's road to recovery is finally coming to an end. The scrappy shortstop has made a full recovery from a hip injury that has sidelined him for the better part of two seasons, and is seeing consistent time with the St. Lucie Mets. He's battled being injured for most of last season, and even with the setbacks he never lost his focus.

"It's early, but it's been going very well. Our team is playing great so far this season. It's exciting being around this group of guys in the clubhouse and on the field. With me this is the best I've felt in a year. It's a great feeling to get back to playing baseball," he stated.

Last summer, Bouchard, wasn't so optimistic as he sat at home recovering away from his teammates. His time away gave way to excitement as the season got closer and he found himself on his way to Port St. Lucie.

"The worst part was just not being out on the field. I came down to here a few weeks early to get readjusted to being back on the field and getting acclimated again. It all clicked when I got back out there, I'm really happy with it," Bouchard revealed.

His recovery went very well in his mind, but he never strays from still taking time to be proactive in preventing another set back.

"My rehab was a lot of stretching and regaining my movement back, along with conditioning to get back in shape. I'm doing stretches and some preventative work to keep everything loose and staying healthy every day now that the season is here," he discussed.

With his injury fading in his rearview, Bouchard turns his focus on this season's success. He has become comfortable playing in Digital Domain Park, and is quickly become a fan favorite.

"This year I'm more comfortable playing any position in the infield. I think it's being more mature, but I'm just more comfortable out there. I really just want to stay healthy out there this season. I'm looking to improve my situational hitting and really figure out what my role will be on the team this year. I'm working on being a smarter batter as well," he explained.

Bouchard has had to try and slow the game down this season when it comes to setting goals for himself. He knows that helping his teammates improve is just as important as any statically achievement he may accomplish.

"My goal this season really is just to help the team win and play an entire season. I don't set statistical goals because it puts more pressure on yourself. I used to do that, but I haven't been lately," Bouchard mentioned.

He says he's been encouraged by the word of the coaches, and says so far this season they're all on the same page.

"The coaches have been pretty positive with me so far this season. They like where I'm at right now and think I'm doing pretty well," he finished.

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