After joining the Oakland A’s as a 29th-round pick last season, Blake McMullen completed his first full professional campaign in 2014. The big right-hander got a taste of two leagues this season, making 10 appearances for Low-A Beloit of the Midwest League and another 20 appearances for short-season Vermont of the New York-Penn League.
In total, McMullen logged 49 innings in 2014. He posted a 5.88 ERA and a 36:18 K:BB. McMullen spent the entire second half of the season with Vermont, and he had a 4.86 ERA and a 25:10 K:BB in 33.1 innings for the Lake Monsters.
McMullen is a hard-throwing right-hander whose fastball can touch 95. He also features a slider that, when on, is an excellent swing-and-miss pitch. The Oklahoma native was a star at The University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, where he led his team in strike-outs in 2013. McMullen was the first player to be drafted out of USAO since 2007, when Matt Mallory was selected by the Florida Marlins.
Donald Moore spoke with McMullen towards the end of the Lake Monsters’ season about his first full professional campaign and his thoughts on his baseball future.
Donald Moore: How's is everything going for you this season?
Blake McMullen: Great. Couldn't ask for a better season in my eyes.
DM: What are your goals for this year?
BM: Just keep doing what I am doing. Make it home safe and healthy and get ready for next year.
DM: What do you feel is your greatest strength as a baseball player?
BM: I think my mental game is pretty good. I can go out and if I have a bad game, I can just quit thinking about and go out in the next game.
DM: What would you like to improve on?
BM: I think my overall command of my pitches. That's the main thing I am focusing on right now.
DM: How are your adjusting to professional baseball?
BM: At first, it was a lot different, but now I am getting used to it and everything seems alright.
DM: Just for the record, any relation to former A's infielder Ken McMullen?
BM: No, not that I think of or been told by anyone in my family.
DM: What is the best thing about being a professional player?
BM: Getting paid.
DM: Any pregame routine?
BM: No, not really. Just whatever happens out there today. There is nothing different I do everyday.
DM: What do you like to do in the off season?
BM: Hunt and fish. Basically all I do.
DM: Favorite team growing up?
BM: Texas Rangers.
DM: If there is one person who taught you the most about baseball, who would that be?
BM: Probably my dad. Just being there for my whole life and teaching me the fundamentals of the game at a young age.
DM: Craziest thing you ever seen on a baseball diamond?
BM: Probably a brawl. I got in a brawl my senior year in college. We got in a baseball brawl. Craziest thing I have even seen.
DM: Where do you see yourself three years from now?
BM: Hopefully in the bigs, but I mean that is everybody's goal, so that's my biggest goal and that's what I want to be in three years.
DM: Thank you so much for your time and the best of luck to you in the future.
BM: Thank you very much.