With the 2009 MLB Draft all over and done with, PinstripesPlus checks in with Yankees Vice President…
Q&A with Yankees 5th Round Pick Caleb Cotham
Caleb Cotham: I mean its pretty big being picked by the Yankees because it's a storied tradition and they just also got a new ballpark. There are a lot things about the Yankees that pretty much everyone likes. They're a great team.
PinstripesPlus.com: Were you surprised it was the Yankees that selected you? Had you and the Yankees talked much before the draft?
Cotham: I mean I had talked to the Yankees scouts a couple times and I was surprised the Yankees took me; I was surprised I got picked. I imagine the Yankees appreciate my skills and glad they give me a chance.
PinstripesPlus.com: Do you have any idea what the Yankees' organization or farm system is like?
Cotham: I know that they have a great farm system. Just talking to themand stuff they've laid out what they bring to the table. As far as player development and stuff, you can't beat it.
PinstripesPlus.com: What type of pitches do you throw and at what speeds? Give us a scouting report please - what are your strengths and what do you need to work on the most?
Cotham: I throw a fastball, slider, and a changeup; a little bit of a curveball and throw fastballs usual in the low 90's. I can get up in the mid 90's. My slider is in the mid 80's. [The] changeup in the low 80's. My strengths are that I pitch a good fastball and all my pitches stem off that, and I'm very competitive. I like to come right after hitters; I don't shy down from anyone and I think that's a strength. I think I need to work on being consistent. That's what every pitcher wants to be, consistent. The same stuff out every time.
PinstripesPlus.com: Did you have a favorite team growing up or a favorite player?
Cotham: I grew up liking the Braves. I like Chipper Jones of the Braves,but I mean I like the Yankees too.
PinstripesPlus.com: Who would you compare your stuff to at the Major League level so Yankees' fans can get an idea of what you're like on the mound? And why?
Cotham: I throw a little bit James Shields from the Rays.
PinstripesPlus.com: What would you say is your best moment in baseball and why?
Cotham: My best moment is when I had a complete game shutout in the regional last week against one of our rivals.
PinstripesPlus.com: Are you looking to sign quickly and get your professional career started right away?
Cotham: Right now I'm just looking to - I had knee sugery on Monday. I'm just looking to get that healthy as soon as possible and go from there. Right now I'm really trying to focus on getting my knee healthy so I can be the best pitcher I can be.
PinstripesPlus.com: Do you think the pressures of pitching in New York might be a problem?
Cotham: I don't think so. I've had to throw with lots of pressure in the SEC so I've thrown in front of 10,000-15,000 people at the collegiate level so it's not like I'm unprepared to handle media and pressure of throwing in front of a lot of people. I think coming from the SEC prepares you a lot more than a lot of people coming out of college and high school.
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