St. Louis Cardinals pitcher John Lackey is a veteran of 12 Major League seasons. But for the first time in his career, he’s working on bunting and hitting during Spring Training.

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“I’ve been in the American League for Spring Training my whole career,” pointed out Lackey on the difference in opening the season with St. Louis. “The PFPs, that kind of stuff–it’s all pretty standard.”

Besides the standard fare, Lackey does have one request he’s met with Mike Matheny and Derek Lilliquist about.

“In one of my starts, I kind of like to be on the back-field, kind of away from everything,” shared Lackey.  “Just to make sure I can work on a few different things without being in a real game situation. Make sure I get up and down, like sitting down and coming back out for an inning, at least six times before the season starts. That’s about it. They’re great with working with us.”

2-23-2015 Lackey-HatleyLackey and the other starters have been getting together for breakfast and working out in the mornings and as the leader of his pitching group, the veteran has had an open ear for questions from younger hurlers.

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“We talk about stuff for sure,” said John. “I like to kind of stay on some of those young guys a little bit–but it’s all in fun. We have a good time, it’s good.”

Contract talks about an extension or salary adjustment–Lackey is currently playing for the MLB minimum this season and says he has not heard much from his agent on the situation.

“I’m just worried about getting ready for the season,” commented Lackey. “The game’s been great to me. I’m in a pretty fortunate situation where I can come here and not really worry about how much money I’m making this year. I’m going to enjoy playing baseball. I still love to compete. Performance on the field will take care of next year.”

And while he “for sure” wants to play next year, John Lackey is focused on the task at hand for 2015.

“At this point, especially in my career, that’s basically all I’m playing for–October and trying to win championships.”

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