Post-Promotion Interview with Kevin Melillo

Kane County second baseman Kevin Melillo celebrated his Fourth of July with a promotion to Class-A Stockton, and also caused some fireworks of his own that night. Melillo had been on a hot streak before the promotion, raising his batting average 30 points in the month of June and hitting .286 with eight HR and an 864 OPS at the time of his call-up. Stockton Correspondent Daniel Ray caught up with Melillo just after he arrived in Stockton.

"Well I'm definitely glad to be up here," Kevin Melillo said.

"Every one always wants that big promotion. The team in Kane County was struggling a bit but they've started to make a run now, but [Stockton] looks like they're already in position to go ahead and win that second half. I hope to give everything I've got to this team, and just try to make the playoffs."

Melillo has spent less than a week with his new team, but already knows he will fit well in the Ports organization.

"We've got a lot of lefties in the lineup and I'm one of them," Melillo said. "With that porch in right field, it's definitely good to have some lefties that can swing the bat. And I'm really here to put a focus on my defense. That's one thing I really want to work on."

While adjusting to his new team, Melillo has found some familiar faces.

"I've played with a lot of these guys in Vancouver, such as (Kurt) Suzuki," Melillo said.

"(Conner) Robertson and (Scot) Drucker were the guys who were with me in Kane County. I'm starting to get to know everybody a little bit. I had a chance to meet them all in spring training so it's not like these are all new guys I'm coming to meet. I've had the opportunity to meet them before. It's going to be fun playing with them."

Melillo has also found a new friend in right fielder Richie Robnett. Robnett, who lost his roommate Daric Barton after Barton's promotion to AA-Midland, replaced Barton with Melillo as his new roommate in the apartment.

Another nice welcome that Melillo has received is playing in a brand new ballpark.

"The ballpark is phenomenal," Melillo said. "It's a gorgeous place. My first game was the Fourth of July so I got a glimpse of the sellout crowd and it was exciting playing in front of them."

Melillo certainly got the fans excited before the fireworks started after the game, lighting up the sky with a solo homerun to the Jackson Rancheria Porch in his Ports debut.

Melillo hopes to continue his June hot-streak into the second half with his new team. He is off to a good start, as he is currently hitting .500 with three HR in only four games for Stockton. Despite the strong first week, Melillo is still looking to improve.

"I have to prove that I can play," Melillo said.

"I need to just prove that I can play defense and can hit the better pitching up on this level. I have to steal some bases, score some runs and be that spark plug for this team, and add some juice to this line-up."

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