WHOOP recently had the opportunity to chat with Cory Spangenberg, a third-year infielder for the San Diego Padres. The topics of conversation included the exciting start to his major league career, his struggles with injuries last season, and how WHOOP is helping him come back strong in 2017.
When did it first cross your mind that you might become a Major League Baseball player?
“I played baseball and basketball all throughout high school, those were my two main sports. I always wanted to be [a pro baseball player]. But I was small, I was tiny in high school, and from a town of only 5,000 people (Clarks Summit, PA). It was always in the back of my mind, but I didn’t know how realistic it was until I got to college.”
Do you remember your first day in the big leagues?
“Oh yeah, absolutely. I’d just gotten a September call up and my family all made it there. It was a day game against Arizona. I had the game-winning 2-RBI hit. It was pretty special.”
What’s been the most memorable moment of your career so far?
“My best memory is actually the next day–I came in during the 9th inning, pinch hit, and [on the first pitch] hit a walk-off homer on my second day in the big leagues. Just having my family out there for that, it was really special to share with them.”
How do you like living in San Diego?
“The whole city is great. I live right downtown and I walk to the park every day. It clears your mind before and after the game, and the weather is just perfect.”
What sort of activities do you do on your days off?
“During the season we play 162 games in 180 days. On those off days you pretty much just hang out and not do much of anything.”
You missed most of last year with quad injuries, what happened?
“I strained my quad 14 games into the season. Two weeks later I tried to come back pretty quick and that’s when I tore it. About a month-and-a-half later I tried to come back again and I tore it again. It was just terrible luck. I didn’t feel completely healthy till about the beginning of January.”
But now you’re feeling good?
“Oh yeah, 100%.”
— Amy M. (@AmyCam13) March 2, 2017
When did you first find out about WHOOP?
“My brother recently started a baseball recruiting company. He got a WHOOP to try out back in December and was raving about it. He said I should try it too, so I got one after Christmas. I haven’t taken it off since. It’s done really well for me.”
How does it best help you?
“Spring training is just a grind playing every day–I wake up at 6 and we’re at the field till 430. [WHOOP] helps me with the strain on my body and knowing when I can do extra stuff and when I should hold back a little bit.”
What do you like best WHOOP?
“The two things I like best are definitely the sleep detection and the daily strain. There are some days that I was supposed to lift and I decided not to do it that day because my recovery wasn’t so high. Coming off the injury, I want to be positive that I’m ready to do each exercise and that my body is ready to take on that strain. When you’re playing every single day, some days it’s easy to get caught up in it and think you feel alright, but the strain tells you how your body is really feeling. That’s the cool thing about it.”
Has your sleep improved?
“Even if I’m not that tired, I’ll get that reminder [from the sleep coach, which helps differentiate between time in bed and time asleep] and be like ‘oh shoot, I need to go to bed.’ I’ve been getting to bed around 8:30 every day just so that I can get the amount of rest that I need.”
Lastly, where do you hope to see your career go from here?
“I want to play in the big leagues for 10 years. I’ve got two years right now, I’d love to stay in San Diego and play for 10 years… And obviously win a championship.”
With WHOOP now approved by MLB for in-game use, Spangenberg will be able to continue wearing his Strap 24/7 (see above photos) throughout the season.