Moran Arrives in Pulaski

Inside Carolina caught up with junior southpaw relief ace Brian Moran just after he reported to the Pulaski Mariners to begin his professional career. Moran was a 7th-round selection in the 2009 MLB draft by the Seattle Mariners.

What was it like for you to find out that you were drafted by the Seattle Mariners after they drafted fellow teammates Dustin Ackley and Kyle Seager?
"I was actually at practice and a lot of the guys shouted down to the bullpen to let me know. Then all the sudden my phone started to get a lot of calls from people saying congratulations. It was pretty cool. It was pretty cool - hopefully I will be able to see them around once they get their professional careers started, either at spring training or somewhere along the line. So it would be pretty cool to see a familiar face, guys I have been with for the last three years that are good friends."

How much contact did you have with the Mariners' scout Rob Mammau - who signed you - before the draft?
"He called a few times leading up to the draft asking what I was thinking and what kind of rounds that I would consider signing in. I heard a good bit from him before and heard from him afterwards. It was pretty exciting."

Were you able to take some time off after returning from the College World Series, before focusing on signing with the Mariners?
"The first couple days were relaxing I kind of tried to use it to clear my head a little bit and relax and hang out with my family. Obviously it was tough the way we lost but looking back it was an awesome year and I took the time to relax and take it all in."

Can you reflect on your career at North Carolina - from starting as a walk-on to being the left handed fireman out of the bullpen and being drafted as a junior?
"It was a dream come true - I can still not believe it that I will not be going back. It was an unbelievable three years. It was everything I could have hoped it could be. I made a lot of good friends and the coaches were awesome. It was an unbelievable experience."

What are the Mariners' current plans for you?
"I am going to continue to be a reliever. I just got to Pulaski - this is where I am starting and I am going to continue to be a relief pitcher here for a while unless something changes."

When do you expect to get back on the field?
"I really am [looking forward to getting back on the field]. I have to get my physical today and get all the paperwork finished up. I am very excited to get out there and I am sure I will be kind of nervous but I am anxious to get my feet wet and get going."

In what way do you think that your experience at North Carolina prepared you for your professional baseball career?
"I got here [in Pulaski] yesterday and got to meet some of the guys. A lot of the structure that the coaches have [at UNC] is really good for preparing guys for pro ball - clean shaven and keeping focused on baseball and doing the right thing on and off the field. I think the coaches do a great job preparing you for professional baseball."

What is the highlight of your career at UNC?
"I would say it was awesome the two years I went to Omaha. The one thing that sticks out in my mind is getting the last out at the Super Regional at home and being on the bottom of the dog pile - that was pretty cool."

What goals do you have for your professional career?
"I hope to make the major leagues one day - just to do well and hopefully move up at a good rate and hopefully break into the big leagues."

What will you miss the most about Chapel Hill?
"That is a tough question. I will miss everything - the guys, going to class, seeing the different students on campus. Obviously the campus is beautiful. I think I will miss the entire experience of Chapel Hill."

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