Don’t let the overgrown offseason beard fool you. Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson has been working hard this offseason, taking advantage of some new resources available to him.
Hanson spent the winter in Southern California working out at the Boras Sports Training Institute with a team of trainers.
Hanson changed agents last summer to Boras and said at the time, it was about more than money, but access to Boras’ staff of trainers, nutritionists and a sports psychologist.
Hanson went to California for a week with the intention of getting familiar with a new workout program and coming back to Atlanta, where he’s now makes his permanent home and where his family has moved from Redlands, CA.
Instead, he decided to stay the whole winter, renting a home in Dana Point, Calif. and driving to Boras’ facility in Aliso Viejo five to six days a week.
“It was everything I wanted to do,” Hanson said. “There were four trainers in there. It was pretty much 1-on-1 the whole time. They were really positive, but they pushed me too.”
He had the benefit of 75-degree weather when Atlanta was iced under several weeks ago. And it was convenient too, working out and throwing in the same place.
“I would get loose, go throw, and then run and work out after that, instead of going, working out, trying to find someone to play catch with,” Hanson said. “It made it easier.”
Hanson said Monday morning on the first day of the Braves’ pre-spring pitching camp that he’s gained 10 pounds of muscle. He also strengthened his back, a big priority of his.
“My lower back was bothering me pretty much all year last year,” Hanson said. “So I incorporated a couple of exercises in and really worked on my flexibility too.”
Hanson had a dominant year in 2010 but got miserable run support, so he finished only 10-11, despite a 3.33 ERA. He comes into 2011 looking for better luck, but he already has some peace of mind.
“I felt like I did everything possible to get ready for the season,” Hanson said. “That gives me maybe a mental edge.”