At the risk of turning this past Wednesday's Gio Gonzalez Day in the nation's capital into a Prince Fielder-esque please-stop-writing-about-this affair, and in the spirit of getting to know the Washington Nationals' new left-hander better, here are a few of the quotes collected from the 26-year-old former Oakland A's starter that didn't make it into the articles written here about his introductory ceremony, some about the trade to D.C., some about his extension, some about the influence a pitcher with a tattoo of Rollie Fingers riding a dolphin over a rainbow (ed. note - "Please tell me that's fake/removable?") has had on his career and some about, well, about Gio Gonzalez's hair...
• Things Gio Gonzalez Said About His Hair On MLB Network Radio: In a December 23rd appearance on the MLB Network Show "Inside Pitch" with Jim Bowden and Casey Stern, Gio Gonzalez was asked to tell the hosts how often he gets his hair cut? Gio Gonzalez: "I cut my hair twice a week."
Q: When did it hit you that you were a National?: Gio: "Yesterday, it hit me that I was home, when I was at the Capitals' game I got all the love in the world from all the fans. I think it sets the tone that we're ready. We're going to come out here swinging for the fence and we're definitely going to go out there and try to shut teams down. "
Gio Gonzalez on the nation's capital: "Just getting the hospitality I've been getting from the fans and not only from this organization, I think I'm going to be here and I'm going to be happy for a while."
Gio on the 5-year/$42M dollar extension he signed with the Nats: "As soon as they made this opportunity happen, I figured, you know what, this is a great organization to be a part of. The names, the young talent, the core that they have, I figured that I was going from Oakland to the Nationals, it felt like it was the same thing, a young family. And as soon as they said hey look we're interested, we want you, when they made the trade happen I was more than happy to smile."
Gio on his reaction to the trade: "It's been a roller coaster ride, definitely a roller coaster ride. A lot of ups and downs, a lot of mixed emotions. It wasn't settled in when I got traded, but when I started getting phone calls from people from the Nationals and all the stuff that was happening and now when I officially put the jersey on that was when it hit me the hardest. It's changed. Now I'm representing a new team, new city, it's just all said and done. I think that finally I get to settle down, go home and get ready for Spring Training and get ready to hopefully bring a championship in October to the Nationals."
Does Gio see himself as a mentor? "See, I like to be the guy that listens up mostly. My door is always open for whoever wants to ask any questions or young guys need a guideline or something like that. Remember, I had to go through some rough patches myself when I was coming up in the minor leagues and the big leagues. It's maturing obviously, growing up and I had a great coach I like to say, a ballplayer, Dallas Braden, who took me under his wings, and led me to the right direction, helped me to become the pitcher that I am today."
Gio on fitting in in Washington: "I like to listen. I'm new in this organization, I don't want to step on anyone's toes, so I like to stay back watch and then within time, hopefully I can break in and help out as much as I can as a role model."
Gio on sightseeing around Washington while making movie references: "When we got here, my brother and my family we enjoyed it. We were running up the steps screaming, "ROCKY!" it's the wrong city, but, we were screaming, "ROCKY!" and then we also saw where Forrest Gump was shot, we did the whole thing, we quoted a lot of movies. "Independence Day!" We did everything."
Gio To 106.7 The FAN's Chad Dukes and Danny Rouhier on Stephen Strasburg: "He was fun to watch, very impressive stuff, everything was just explosive and lightning, it almost seemed unreal where he was just in the strike zone, striking everyone out and making situations happen that most pitchers just watch and keep the jaw [open] and have to pick it up from the floor. But just to be a part of it and to see him come back and bounce back, it just shows the type of character he is, he wants to go out there and continue to strive for the best and he's going to be a fun guy to be a part of and watch for the next couple of years and hopefully we, together, bring home a title."
• Listen to the interview with Gio Gonzalez and 106.7 the FAN's Chad Dukes and Danny Rouhier:
• Gio on his favorite football team: Gonzalez also made an appearance on ESPN980's the Sports Reporters with Steve Czaban and Andy Pollin and after a brief conversation he asked politely if he could say one more thing. "One more thing before I go," Gonzalez said, "I just want to say, 'Hail to the Redskins.'"
Welcome to Washington, Gio.