Hunter Pence hopped on with Murph & Mac on Friday morning for the first time since playing what many assume was his last game in a Giants uniform on Sept. 30.
While it might not be with the Giants, Pence doesn’t have any plans to retire, and has been training in Southern California since the end of last season. Pence is working on improving both his swing and running technique after a number of injury riddled, and below average seasons with the Giants.
“The season that I had this year, I’ll be honest I wasn’t happy with it,” Pence said. “I’m at that point in my career getting a little bit older where I’ve got to make an adjustment and there’s a really famous hitting guy out here, Doug Latta, and also David Weck and Marlin Byrd who are training this new double-pulse down running. I was coming to kind of reinvent myself and see if I could do that, because I wanted to continue to play a year or two or three more, but starting with one.
“I definitely need to improve if I want to help a team win. I also had a lot of time off because I’m used to being an everyday player and that usually grinds on your body so I was pretty fresh when the season ended. So I came out trying to reinvent myself and I’m headed to winter ball December 5.”
Pence is planning to play winter ball in the Dominican Republic for the first time in his career, after posting career lows at the plate in 2018.
“I’ve gotten to play with so many Dominican Republic teammates and so many people from the DR and heard so much about the country and the passion they have for baseball. So I’ve always wanted to, but when you play a full season it’s tough to play also in the winter, and like I said this year I didn’t play everyday and my body was really fresh and I’m making all of those big adjustments.
“It’s a perfect opportunity for me to go visit and immerse myself in a wonderful culture that loves baseball, and also to go to play to win out there and also to make these new adjustments and integrate them into the baseball world.”
Pence also reflected on the end of his time in San Francisco.
“In my heart it doesn’t feel like it’s completely the end of my time there,” Pence said. “I was full of joy and I was overwhelmed with the support and the love from the fans. There was no sadness, just a bunch of joy, and just ecstatic that I got the opportunity to play in such a beautiful stadium and to be a part of such a wonderful journey of the seven years. The ups and the downs, we had both for sure, and just absolute joy in my heart and just appreciating all the fans and the organization and the city.
“Also, I was determined. I knew I was going to work on changing things. I told Larry Baer right at the end when he came and gave me a hug, I said, ‘Hey, send your scouts out to see me play in the Dominican Republic I’m going to be playing winter ball, I’m going to be making some adjustments.’ So who knows the end from the beginning, but I definitely just was in love with the city and definitely happy and appreciative of all the support.”
Listen to the full interview below.