Q&A with Jays' 13th Round Pick John Silviano

We talked to the Blue Jays' 13th round pick, John Silviano, for a Q&A session. Find out what the catcher from Christian Summit School in Florida has to say about his game, his strengths and weaknesses, who he would compare his game to at the big league level, if he's looking to sign quickly, and more!

FutureJays.com: What was your first thought when Toronto took you in the 13th round?

John Silviano: I was really excited. It's what I always wanted to do since I was a kid. And to finally have it come true has been crazy. I'm just really excited to start playing.

FutureJays.com: Had you spoken with the team prior to the draft? What kind of interest did they show?

Silviano: They were one of the more interested teams during my season and then I went to the (pre-draft) workout. But definitely the area scout around here was one of the more interested scouts. [Tuesday] they called me a couple times. I almost got drafted in the eighth round, it was between me and a pitcher. But they told me they really wanted to get me into the organization.

FutureJays.com: Tell us a little bit about your game as if you were to give a scouting report on yourself.

Silviano: I have some pretty good power and I'm not slow. I run a 6.9 60-yard dash. I'm still growing too.

FutureJays.com: A lot of guys who start behind the plate get shifted to other positions for various reasons, whether it's to guard against the wear and tear of catching or keep their bat in the lineup more often. Do the Jays see your future behind the plate or do you see a positional shift in the future? Do you play anywhere else on the diamond?

Silviano: They see me behind the plate. But who knows. Things could change. I could go to third because I've played there or go to the outfield, one of the corner spots. From what I've heard, they see me mostly behind the plate, that's where they're predicting me.

FutureJays.com: So you have experience at third and in the outfield?

Silviano: I haven't played the outfield a crazy amount. I played third on my summer team, whenever we had three catchers I would always play third. But for my high school team I mostly caught.

FutureJays.com: What's the strongest part of your game right now? Is it your bat?

Silviano: I think it's pretty even between my bat and my defensive catching. Behind the plate, not many kids steal on me because of my arm. So I'd say defensively, with my arm and offensively with my bat.

FutureJays.com: There are so many intricacies to the defensive side of catching, what's the area you want to work on the most going forward?

Silviano: Probably just my blocking with different pitches. You never expect to get a fastball in the dirt, you're usually just thinking offspeed in the dirt. So I want to improve on my blocking with the fastball. And maybe just some framing and footwork stuff. Other than that, whatever they see. I'm just going go there and listen to their instruction and only try to get better.

FutureJays.com: On the offensive side of the game, what's your biggest strength?

Silviano: Probably with the outside pitch. Whenever I swing the bat, sometimes I go through phases where I'm really good at hitting the outside pitch and then sometimes I just let it go by for a first-pitch strike. Other times I'll swing at it for a double to the gap. But I'd like to stop that and focus on hitting the outside pitch all the time, driving it to left field.

FutureJays.com: You play in an aluminum bat league in high school. Have you swung a wooden bat at all and how do you think the transition will be?

Silviano: Mostly throughout the summer leagues you're swinging only a wood bat. And whenever you take BP or any kind of batting practice, I'm always using wood. I've been hitting with wood a lot lately ever since the last two months of my season. Up until the draft I've only been hitting with wood, I haven't even touched aluminum. So I'm really just trying to prepare myself for playing only with a wood bat.

FutureJays.com: What's been the biggest moment of your baseball career so far?

Silviano: Probably winning state last year. Going up with my team, we won the state championship. That was just a great memory, probably one of the best times of my life.

FutureJays.com: Did you have a favorite team or player?

Silviano: Growing up I'd have to say my favorite team was the Atlanta Braves because I was born in Atlanta originally and I always kept interest in the Braves. And probably one of my favorite players growing up would be Chipper Jones.

FutureJays.com: Is there a current player in the Major Leagues right now that you model your game after?

Silviano: I think maybe, I don't want to say Joe Mauer, because I don't think I'm even close to as good a hitter as Joe Mauer, but just with the catching and the lefty stick, I think I kind of resemble him a little bit.

FutureJays.com: You still have the college route available to you, are you strongly considering that option or are you likely to get your pro career started this season?

Silviano: I'm pretty sure I'm going to sign. I have to report to Dunedin in a couple days so I'm pretty sure I'm signing.

FutureJays.com: Have they given you any indication what level you'll start at once you finish the evaluation process?

Silviano: They said I'll probably start off at Rookie Ball and if they like me they'll fly me off somewhere else. But they just said to be prepared for cold weather and to bring a couple jackets.


Future Jays Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\nFutureJays.com: What was your first thought when Toronto took you in the 13th round?
\r\n
\r\nJohn Silviano: I was really excited. It's what I always wanted to do since I was a kid. And to finally have it come true has been crazy. I'm just really excited to start playing.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: Had you spoken with the team prior to the draft? What kind of interest did they show?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: They were one of the more interested teams during my season and then I went to the (pre-draft) workout. But definitely the area scout around here was one of the more interested scouts. [Tuesday] they called me a couple times. I almost got drafted in the eighth round, it was between me and a pitcher. But they told me they really wanted to get me into the organization.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: Tell us a little bit about your game as if you were to give a scouting report on yourself.
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: I have some pretty good power and I'm not slow. I run a 6.9 60-yard dash. I'm still growing too.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: A lot of guys who start behind the plate get shifted to other positions for various reasons, whether it's to guard against the wear and tear of catching or keep their bat in the lineup more often. Do the Jays see your future behind the plate or do you see a positional shift in the future? Do you play anywhere else on the diamond?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: They see me behind the plate. But who knows. Things could change. I could go to third because I've played there or go to the outfield, one of the corner spots. From what I've heard, they see me mostly behind the plate, that's where they're predicting me.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: So you have experience at third and in the outfield?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: I haven't played the outfield a crazy amount. I played third on my summer team, whenever we had three catchers I would always play third. But for my high school team I mostly caught.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: What's the strongest part of your game right now? Is it your bat?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: I think it's pretty even between my bat and my defensive catching. Behind the plate, not many kids steal on me because of my arm. So I'd say defensively, with my arm and offensively with my bat.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: There are so many intricacies to the defensive side of catching, what's the area you want to work on the most going forward?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: Probably just my blocking with different pitches. You never expect to get a fastball in the dirt, you're usually just thinking offspeed in the dirt. So I want to improve on my blocking with the fastball. And maybe just some framing and footwork stuff. Other than that, whatever they see. I'm just going go there and listen to their instruction and only try to get better.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: On the offensive side of the game, what's your biggest strength?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: Probably with the outside pitch. Whenever I swing the bat, sometimes I go through phases where I'm really good at hitting the outside pitch and then sometimes I just let it go by for a first-pitch strike. Other times I'll swing at it for a double to the gap. But I'd like to stop that and focus on hitting the outside pitch all the time, driving it to left field.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: You play in an aluminum bat league in high school. Have you swung a wooden bat at all and how do you think the transition will be?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: Mostly throughout the summer leagues you're swinging only a wood bat. And whenever you take BP or any kind of batting practice, I'm always using wood. I've been hitting with wood a lot lately ever since the last two months of my season. Up until the draft I've only been hitting with wood, I haven't even touched aluminum. So I'm really just trying to prepare myself for playing only with a wood bat.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: What's been the biggest moment of your baseball career so far?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: Probably winning state last year. Going up with my team, we won the state championship. That was just a great memory, probably one of the best times of my life.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: Did you have a favorite team or player?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: Growing up I'd have to say my favorite team was the Atlanta Braves because I was born in Atlanta originally and I always kept interest in the Braves. And probably one of my favorite players growing up would be Chipper Jones.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: Is there a current player in the Major Leagues right now that you model your game after?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: I think maybe, I don't want to say Joe Mauer, because I don't think I'm even close to as good a hitter as Joe Mauer, but just with the catching and the lefty stick, I think I kind of resemble him a little bit.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: You still have the college route available to you, are you strongly considering that option or are you likely to get your pro career started this season?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: I'm pretty sure I'm going to sign. I have to report to Dunedin in a couple days so I'm pretty sure I'm signing.
\r\n
\r\nFutureJays.com: Have they given you any indication what level you'll start at once you finish the evaluation process?
\r\n
\r\nSilviano: They said I'll probably start off at Rookie Ball and if they like me they'll fly me off somewhere else. But they just said to be prepared for cold weather and to bring a couple jackets.
\r\n
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