In his first six weeks as a professional baseball player, Steven Pallares has proven to be a difficult out. The San Diego State product has drawn 28 walks in 36 games and has a .384 OBP. He leads the New York-Penn League in walks and is 13th in the league in OBP. Pallares is also fourth in the league in runs scored (24) and he leads the Lake Monsters in stolen bases with five in seven attempts.
After three relatively non-descript seasons at SDSU, Pallares burst onto the scene as a legitimate draft prospect with a monster senior season. He hit .352/.447/.523 and walked more than he struck-out. Pallares also drew national attention when he stole home to win a NCAA regional game for the Aztecs.
Donald Moore spoke with the versatile Pallares, who has hit up and down the line-up this season and all over the outfield.
Donald Moore: Hi Steve, how is everything going for you so far this year?
Steven Pallares: Everything has been going good. Obviously I'm making an adjustment from going to college to professional baseball, but it's been a good transition and it's been a fun one.
DM: What are your goals for this year?
SP: Just stay consistent at the plate and just have quality at-bats and stay consistent throughout the entire season. And help this ballclub win.
DM: What do you feel is your greatest strength as a baseball player?
SP: Being a huge team player, helping the guys around me and helping them to make them better and, in doing so, it makes me a better baseball player.
DM: What would you like to improve on?
SP: Definitely overall speed, running down balls in the gap or taking second base. Just overall speed.
DM: How are you adjusting to professional baseball?
SP: There is the transition of playing everyday and obviously nutrition is a big thing, so just trying to make sure off the field is in check and make sure that I am healthy off the field, which translates to being healthy on the field.
DM: What is the best thing about being a profession athlete?
SP: Maybe the bus rides? No, just being to play everyday and in college you don't get to do that. You play Friday, Saturday and Sundays and then Tuesday, so it's a lot of time when we are here, if you had a tough day or a good day, you just come out to the yard the next day and do it all over again. So I think that being able to play everyday and stay consistent.
DM: Any pregame routine?
SP: Yeah, obviously everyday is pretty much a routine and you got to get into everyday and you do the same thing over and over: pregame routine, pre at-bat routine, and the box routine and the outfield routine. It's just about keeping on the routine and developing it.
DM: Any hobbies?
SP: So far I like fishing and going cart racing with some guys. Hanging out with the teammates and getting to know these guys is a lot of fun.
DM: Favorite baseball team growing up?
SP: Boston Red Sox.
DM: If there is one person that taught you the most about baseball, who would that be?
SP: Definitely Tony Gwynn. He was my coach for three years at San Diego State and he has definitely has the most influence on me as a baseball player and obviously as a hitter.
DM: Craziest thing you ever seen on a baseball diamond?
SP: I've seen a lot of crazy things but this past year I watched a guy hit a home run and miss home plate. I had never seen that before. And so he ended up getting called out and the inning was over. We came out running to the field to celebrate his home run, but he misses home plate and he's out. True story.
DM: Where do you see yourself in your future regarding your baseball career?
SP: Obviously to make it to the big leagues. I want to play in the big leagues and have a long career and get to play everyday in the majors and represent your family, too.
DM: Steve, thank you so much for your time and the best of luck to you and your career.
SP: Absolutely, thank you very much, I appreciate it.