© Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports
On Tuesday, Giants outfielder Mac Williamson appeared on Murph & Mac to talk about how his recovery from a concussion last season, as well as how spring training has gone so far.
In a game against the Nationals on April 24, Williamson tripped and fell over the home bullpen mounds in foul territory at Oracle Park, landing head-first into the wall. Williamson struggled to get back on the field after the incident, and dealt with concussion symptoms and bouts of panic attacks throughout last season. It has been a long road, and Williamson talked about his journey back to health, both physically and mentally.
“It was a journey,” Williamson said. “I learned a lot about myself, and a lot about concussions, mental health, and everything that goes with that. I had never endured some of the things I endured last year in my life, with concussions and panic attacks — stuff like that.
“When I was back to playing, when I got optioned back to the minor leagues, I was still feeling terrible most days, and eventually got to the point where I couldn’t see.” Williamson said. “I couldn’t see in the outfield, couldn’t see at the plate. I was struggling off the field, feeling nauseous and everything, and I finally had to shut it down. I clearly wasn’t getting any better, but I was costing the guys, playing poor defense and not being able to make the plays.”
Mac went on to talk about what it’s like playing with concussion-like symptoms, and trying to battle through it.
“I had blurred vision, and my depth perception was off,” he said. “I was running in on balls over my head, or running back on balls in, and if I had to put my head down to take a couple steps and look back up, I had no chance… If I wasn’t at the field, I was sleeping. I’d get up at one in the afternoon, go to the ballpark, come back, and go to sleep again… So it was tough. It was very difficult, and I learned a lot about it. With concussions, there’s a lot of stuff out there, and we’re learning new things every day.”
It would seem as though Williamson is back where he needs to be mentally, and looking forward, he was eager to get started this spring, and talked about what it’s like playing for new front office executive Farhan Zaidi.
“Farhan has made a point this spring to talk with each player in camp, pitchers and hitters alike, and meet with Bochy and their respective position coaches,” Williamson said. “I haven’t had the opportunity to talk to him yet. I’d say half the players have, so I think sometime this week, hopefully. He’s just going to give us an idea on how he sees us fitting in, our strengths and weaknesses, how he thinks we can get better, and just kind of lay it out there so everyone’s on the same page, and I think that’s great.
“Communication is key; it’s not a good feeling when you’re just left in the dark… So I look forward to that meeting, seeing where I fit in, and as it stands now, if I play well, I have a chance to make the team.”
To hear the entire interview, listen HERE: