SI: What kind of
feedback did you get on your analyst gig?
Wells: My wife
said I was doing a great job, but I got plenty of calls from friends and
teammates that were not as nice. A former teammate of mine, Eric Hinske, sent
me a text message that said, YOUR NOSE LOOKS EVEN BIGGER ON TV.
SI: What was the
hardest thing about the job?
Wells: Trying to
be politically correct. I still have to play against these guys. I try to be
honest without being disrespectful, especially to pitchers. They're on the
mound when I'm in the box.
SI: Who's the
best first baseman to have a conversation with when you're a runner?
Giambi. He's a great guy. We can talk about any subject. It can be baseball or
something off-the-wall. When he came to Toronto, he and Johnny Damon had
interesting-looking mustaches. Then, when I was in New York, he didn't have it.
So I asked him what happened to his "porn-stache." He said he wasn't
getting hits, so he figured he should shave it off.
SI: Your dad,
Vernon Sr., is an artist who has had hundreds of portraits commissioned by
major leaguers. How many of his works do you own?
Wells: Five or
six. There's one he did when I was in high school of myself and Ken Griffey
Jr., who was my favorite player. That's the only one of myself. I know Torii
Hunter had him do a picture of three Gold Glove outfielders--Torii, me and
SI: You don't
love your first name, right?
Wells: No. You
try to say it to the people on the phone and they don't understand what you're
saying [laughs]. I was going to be a Michael. But then my parents saw my nose,
and it was just like my dad's, so they figured they would call me Vernon