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Drew Hutchison has had a very successful 2010 campaign.  Hutchison was selected by the Jays in the 15th round of the 2009 draft out of a Lakeland, Florida high school.  Hutchison did have a college scholarship offer and late in the summer the Jays paid him what he wanted to turn pro, $400,000 according to Baseball America.  Hutchison did not pitch for the Jays in 2009 and started 2010 with Auburn.  Hutchison put up good numbers in Auburn and was named to the NYPL all-star team, but before the all-star game the Jays promoted him to Lansing.

Drew turned 20 years old on Sunday so happy birthday from Batters Box.

BB: Drew, you were promoted this week, was that a surprise to you?

DH: Actually I had no idea, I got the call one night from Dennis Holmberg and I met up with the team the next day.

BB: Then your first start here was like a dream start.

DH: Yes, I just tried to go out there and do what I do, keep the ball down, the defence played great.  Kareem Turkamani and I were on the same page, everything went well.

BB: I talked with Vince Horsman in Auburn and he said he told you to do the same things you were doing there.

DH: Yes, I tried to be myself, didn't try to change much, just tried to do what I do when I take the mound.


BB: So what do you think has been the key to your success this year?

DH: I am not an overpowering guy, I am a command guy, I have to hit my spots and stay within myself.

BB: Is your fastball the same speed or are you adding some speed to it as you grow?

DH: Maybe a mile or two, 90-92, but for me it's all about command not really overpowering

BB: I know you have been working on your off-speed pitches have you been learning any new pitches this year?

DH: I have improved my change-up a lot, it was an all right pitch but now I am starting to get a feel for it.  It's been real good at times, sometimes it has been inconsistent.  I have really worked on that and tidying up my slider a little bit.

BB: Are they trying to get you to cut the fastball?

DH: Not really, I throw both the two seam and the four seam.

BB: When I think back to when you were drafted I believe you were drafted below where you would have been because you had another option, is that right?

DH: Yes, I had signed to go to Stetson, In Florida, as a two-way player, to be both a shortstop and a pitcher. 

BB: Did it take much convincing for you to change your mind?

DH: I knew what it would take to give it up, and it happened, so I was very happy to have the opportunity to play professional baseball.


BB: So when you go to Auburn and you are pitching in front of a few thousand people instead of five, what is that like?

DH: It's exciting, you love to throw in front of big crowds.  Once you step on the mound you get tunnel vision but it's good to play in front of a big crowd.

BB: What is it like throwing to Carlos Perez in Auburn?

DH: Oh he is a very good catcher, very good, he is a really good hitter too, he is going to be a really good player.

BB: Did the Jays say anything to you about an innings limitation for this year?

DH: I am not allowed to go over 75 pitches or five innings

BB: Is that the same as Auburn?

DH: I had a 70 pitch count but I went into the sixth inning a few times.


Batters Box thanks Drew Hutchison and Go Nuts!

An Interview with Drew Hutchison | 8 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Kelekin - Monday, August 23 2010 @ 06:14 PM EDT (#221323) #
Thanks for another interview Gerry.  He certainly doesn't seem the most exciting person to interview though, haha.  =)
Thomas - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 01:39 AM EDT (#221336) #
Gerry, did the coaching staff in Auburn give you a sense of how they felt Hutchison's progression with improving his change-up was coming and whether they felt it could eventually become an important part of his arsenal?
Gerry - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 09:03 AM EDT (#221344) #

Kelekin:  The problem with interviewing a lot of these young players is that they just play the game and try not to overthink it.  So you can ask them about their past but questions about "the game" usually don't go much beyond "see ball, hit ball" or "I just throw what the catcher wants".   Even within that context Drew was somewhat more bland in his answers than the others. 

Thomas: Hutchison has an average fastball but an above average change and slider.  Some people think his slider is his best pitch, others his change.  See Fasano's comments today about his change, he calls it a plus-plus pitch.  Hutchison will have to rely on those off-speed pitches to move up.

China fan - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 09:20 AM EDT (#221346) #
Gerry, thanks for these great interviews.  Incidentally, tell us how you arrange these interviews.  Do you phone them, or do you just pester the guys at the ballpark when you see them?  Are they all quite approachable?  Are they generally willing to give you a lot of access?  Does it require some charm and persistence, or are they just hanging around the ballpark, willing to be approached for a conversation?
Gerry - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 10:09 AM EDT (#221349) #

I get these interviews because I have a media pass and because I get to the park 4-5 hours before game time.  Because I have been doing this for many years now I can get a media pass from the teams which gets me into the park at 2pm or 3pm for a 7pm game.  I catch the guys before or after warm-ups or before or after batting practice.  When the team is at home they usually stretch around 3 or 3:30.  I got to Auburn at 3:00 pm a few weeks ago and the players were in the middle of pitcher fielding practice and run-down practice at 3 in the afternoon.  These players put in a long day when they are at home.  When they are on the road they have less access to the field and facilities so they don't get started until 4 or 4:30.

The players are always very willing to talk and I have never had a player turn me down.  I have learned when it is OK to ask and when it is not OK to ask and how to work with the managers.  The last thing you want to do with a team is get on the wrong side of the manager, they are the kings of these guys.

bpoz - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 10:16 AM EDT (#221350) #
I like Fasano's comments. Besides having a variety of pitches that he seems to or has mastered, Hutchinson also is not afraid to throw any pitch in any count.
OH what the heck since I am praising him, just one more compliment. Are not 19 years old pitchers supposed to be pitching in the GCL?
John Northey - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 10:40 AM EDT (#221351) #
Always interesting and glad to hear how you get access and how you are careful not to lose it!

One thing I think might be worth asking is "What would you like fans to know about you?" as I'd bet you'd get some odd answers which I'd bet would lead some of us to follow certain guys closer. Also "Do you or anyone in your family spend way too much time hunting down comments/commentary about you online?". We have had parents/friends/relatives of some former Jay minor leagues pop up here in the past and if I had a child out there in the public eye I know I'd be all over the place seeing what people were saying about them. Again, bet we'd get some funny responses (or you'd at least get some eye rolls as he says "don't tell anyone but my ma is always forwarding me stuff and emailing web sites left right and centre.").
China fan - Tuesday, August 24 2010 @ 02:28 PM EDT (#221374) #
Thanks, Gerry, very interesting.
An Interview with Drew Hutchison | 8 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.