Media Day: D.J. Mitchell

On making his Double-A debut: “Oh man, it’s a blessing.  It’s great to be here.  This is everything that you can dream of, just working your way up.  So far, I’m doing that and I’m looking forward to it.  I had a great spring training with all the guys.  It’s going to be fun.  I like this team, there’s a lot of good guys and we’ve got a good team.”

On the hype around him: “I don’t really pay attention to it.  I just go out there and compete and try to do what I can do.  I don’t really pay attention to what goes on outside the lines.  It really doesn’t bother me or help me, things like that.”

On his transition from the outfield to the mound: “Well, I was an outfielder, so I played in right and center and I guess I had a pretty good arm.  I threw a bullpen one day and the pitching coach, Kevin O’Sullivan, who is now the head coach at Florida, he liked what he saw and we started working with it.  My sophomore year, I got my feet wet and started pitching.  I played both my sophomore year and did pretty well, then I went off to the Cape Cod League and mainly just pitched.  I did pretty well there as well, then I came back my junior year and I just focused on pitching.  That’s all I did.  I feel like that’s what I’m better at, so I stuck with it.

On if he feels like he’s been pitching for a while: “I still have a lot to learn.  This is only my third full season pitching.  I’ve got great coaches and I’ve got great teammates, and they help out along the way.  With those guys, I feel like I’m learning at a higher pace, that it’s like I’ve been pitching much longer than I have.  But I still have a lot of work to do.”

On what kind of pitcher he is, what he throws, etc.: “I throw a two-seam fastball, four-seam fastball, curve, change, and I just added sort of a slider-curve type thing.  I’m more of a ground ball pitcher.  I pitch to contact, try to get a lot of ground balls.  In the past, I’ve actually had a lot of strikeouts, but I don’t envision myself as a strikeout pitcher.  But if I get ahead, I do try to put guys away.”

On how key the development of the slider is: “I think it’s pretty big.  I throw my sinker and it goes one way, and I’m able to throw a slider or a cutter and it goes the opposite way, and I think it keeps hitters off-balance.  I’m still working with that, and it’s come a long way.  I’m ready to throw it out there on the mound and see how it goes.”

On his 2010 goals: “Right now, I just want to go out there and compete.  Any time I go out there, my goal is to win.  I got kind of spoiled in my first year with Tampa in winning a championship, and I’d love to do that again.  There’s not a better feeling than winning a championship.” 

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

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One Response to “Media Day: D.J. Mitchell”

  1. Trenton Thunder Blogger Mike Ashmore is a Beast | Baseball Bloggers Alliance Says:

    […] Franklin Grant Duff Ryan Pope Tommy Phelps Brandon Laird Christian Garcia Austin Romine DJ Mitchell Josh […]

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