Ryan Howard training to become ‘superhuman that happens to play baseball’ – Yahoo Sports

Don’t count out Ryan Howard just yet.

The former National League MVP may be 37 years old and unemployed for the first time in his major-league career, but he’s not ready to walk away either.

That was evidenced in a new video posted by Whistle Sports titled ‘No Days Off.’ The video takes us behind the scenes in Howard’s rigorous offseason training, which his training partner says is aimed at creating “a superhuman that just happens to play baseball.”

That sounds like some pretty serious business. And as you’ll see in the video below, it most certainly is.

It’s noted that Howard is up by 6:30 every morning getting in his first hitting session of around 150 swings. Thus begins another day filled with baseball and non-baseball activities that Howard hopes will bring more strength, mobility and durability to his game.

Obviously, at 37, it’s an uphill battle. That’s just the nature of life, but the willingness to work hard is the surest way to climb that hill and remain in peak condition.

What’s most fascinating here though is simply catching a glimpse of what baseball players put into maintaining their health and preparing their bodies for the marathon that is baseball season. For some, that marathon can extend to eight months, which takes a toll on players of all ages.

Ryan Howard said goodbye to Philadelphia, but he's not ready to walk away from MLB. (AP)Ryan Howard said goodbye to Philadelphia, but he's not ready to walk away from MLB. (AP)

It also provides some interesting insight into Howard’s mindset after the Philadelphia Phillies let him walk away after nearly 16 years in the organization and 382 home runs at the major-league level. Like the game itself, training is just as much mental as physical, so to see Howard getting into a good place in both regards is encouraging.

Keep in mind, Howard hit 25 home runs last season despite being limited to 362 plate appearances. The power was still there, but his all around offensive game wasn’t after slashing just .196/.257/.453. Someone will definitely give him a shot, preferably as a designated hitter. But if nothing else, that team should be happy with the presence he’ll bring to the clubhouse and the example he’ll set through his hard work.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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