New Rockies Slugger Kris Bryant met the media Thursday, following the team's optional workout at Coors Field. He'll make his debut in purple Friday, when the Rival Dodgers come to town, and plenty of attention will be on the 4-time All-Star. Bryant, 30, was also the MVP in 2016 when he helped the Chicago Cubs snap a 108-year Championship Drought.
With a resume like his, and a 7-year, $182 Million contract, there are plenty of expectations from a production and a leadership standpoint. Bryant referenced the pressure that accompanies him, "This goes back to when I was drafted and having a lot of expectations on my shoulders being drafted 2nd overall," Bryant said. "Then, having a good Spring Training in 2015 and getting sent down and having billboards outside of Wrigley Field before I was even called up...It's a lot of pressure. So, I've been through it before. I know how to handle it. I know just not to even pay attention to it. Because I think when you do pay attention to it, you get too high. You think you're better than you are, and that's just not who I am."
To say the Rockies are void of leadership wouldn't be fair to veterans like Charlie Blackmon, C.J. Cron & Jholys Chacin, not to mention front line starters like Kyle Freelander and German Marquez, as well as his fellow all-star Ryan McMahon. But, Bryant knows he's viewed differently for all of the reasons listed above. "This is something that really stuck with me were (General Manager) Bill Schmidt and the ownership, is telling me you don't have to be someone you're not," Bryant said. "I think that's the best quality of a leader. Someone who's genuine. Someone who can have a conversation with someone who's struggling. Someone who can stand up here and answer your guys' questions honestly. I hope to provide that for the guys in there(the Clubhouse) and show them just a way to do things. That's comfortable for me. I think, so far, so good. And, I hope to do that for the full seven years."