Anderson's first overture to Brian Matusz "respectfully declined"

Everybody knows that Brady Anderson has been working with left-hander Brian Matusz to build him back up both physically and mentally after last year's discouraging performance. Recently, Matusz revealed that Brady offered him the same assistance after the 2010 season, but it was "respectfully declined."

Matusz was coming off a terrific 7-1 finish in 2010 when Anderson invited him to join a group of players doing their offseason strength and conditioning work at UC Irvine in Southern California. Matusz opted out because he had already signed up to work with some other players at the Athete’s Performance Institute (API) in Arizona.

"The next year, when I was strugging and had the injuries, he just came up to me and said, ‘Brian, we’re working out, c’mon,’” Matusz said. “He could have held that against me, but he didn’t, and now we’re terrific friends.

“He’s always there to help anyone, not just the guys playing well. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a major leaguer or minor leaguer. He has so much knowledge to help guys reach their potential. It’s unbelievable to have a guy like that in the organization. He offers his services for the love of it.”

Anderson said it never occurred to him to be offended when Matusz turned him down the first time, or to let that affect his desire to help him later.

“You have to take yourself out of it if you really want to help somebody,’’ he said. “That ego part or your feelings getting hurt doesn’t play so well if you really, truly want to help somebody else. I wasn’t bothered by that because people have to choose their own path in life and try to make those decisions and I think Brian found out quickly. I said ‘Hey man, this isn’t for the next couple of months. I’m going to be helping you for the next 10 years. It doesn’t end. It ends when your career ends, and by that time we’ll be great friends.’”

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