Q&A with 1st Round Pick J.P. Arencibia

Read this exclusive interview with 21st pick J.P. Arencibia only on InsideTheDome.com. Find out more about the catcher, when he expects to sign, his thoughts on joining the Jays and much more.

InsideTheDome: What are your thoughts on being taken by Toronto?

J.P. Arencibia: It's a great organization and I can't wait to get started. It's very satisfying, and, honestly, it just makes me want to work harder. There aren't many words that can express my joy right now as a person. Not many people ever get to live a dream—or even come close to it—and I'm lucky enough to say I'm living my dream, so I'm very excited.

InsideTheDome: What do you see as your greatest strengths as a ballplayer?

J.P. Arencibia: I think I'm an all-around player. I can play defense with the best of them, and I know that I have the abilities of calling a game and handling a pitching staff and all that stuff. As far as hitting, I think that I'm one of the stronger right-handed hitters around. I feel that I can hit the ball with average and with power to all fields.

InsideTheDome: What do you see as the things you need to work on most?

J.P. Arencibia: I really want to key on my defense and work on that, and really work on getting in the weight room and getting strong; doing the little things that make everything possible.

InsideTheDome: How likely is it that you'll sign with Toronto, and when do you expect to be doing so?

J.P. Arencibia:: It's very likely [that I'll sign]. I mean, I want to get out there and play soon.

InsideTheDome: How do you see yourself adjusting to minor league ball?

J.P. Arencibia: I played with the USA team my freshman and sophomore years, and it's pretty much professional baseball. You travel every day, and you play top competition. I think I have a little more experience than some of the other players out there, and I think that I'm ready for that.

InsideTheDome: How important is your Team USA experience to you?

J.P. Arencibia: You learn how to hit with wood, and you learn that you're not going to be as successful as you are at the college level. It helps you learn how to cope with failure and make adjustments.

InsideTheDome: How do you think you'll adjust to the better pitchers in the minor leagues, both at the plate and behind it?

J.P. Arencibia: I faced, in the SEC, three first-round pitchers; that's the best of the best. And all the pitchers that went in the first round from college I caught with the USA team, so it's nothing I haven't done before.

InsideTheDome: You were hampered this season by an injury, how much did that affect you, and how is it feeling now?

J.P. Arencibia: It wasn't even my back, like it came out, it was in my upper butt. At first, I tried to play through it, and it was hurting me, but after I allowed it to get better, I was able to get going. Once I was healthy, I proved what I was able to do and played how I was capable of playing.

InsideTheDome: What position do you see yourself fitting into as a pro? Do you have the defensive ability to stay behind the plate?

J.P. Arencibia: I see myself as a catcher. I've always caught; I've done it for the USA team, and all the pitchers enjoyed throwing to me. All this talk about me not being able to catch is a result of how people saw me when I was hurt, and that's fine, but I'm going to catch, and I'm going to be a solid catcher.

Future Jays Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nInsideTheDome: What are your thoughts on being taken by Toronto?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: It's a great organization and I can't wait to get started. It's very satisfying, and, honestly, it just makes me want to work harder. There aren't many words that can express my joy right now as a person. Not many people ever get to live a dream—or even come close to it—and I'm lucky enough to say I'm living my dream, so I'm very excited.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: What do you see as your greatest strengths as a ballplayer?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: I think I'm an all-around player. I can play defense with the best of them, and I know that I have the abilities of calling a game and handling a pitching staff and all that stuff. As far as hitting, I think that I'm one of the stronger right-handed hitters around. I feel that I can hit the ball with average and with power to all fields.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: What do you see as the things you need to work on most?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: I really want to key on my defense and work on that, and really work on getting in the weight room and getting strong; doing the little things that make everything possible.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: How likely is it that you'll sign with Toronto, and when do you expect to be doing so?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia:: It's very likely [that I'll sign]. I mean, I want to get out there and play soon.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: How do you see yourself adjusting to minor league ball?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: I played with the USA team my freshman and sophomore years, and it's pretty much professional baseball. You travel every day, and you play top competition. I think I have a little more experience than some of the other players out there, and I think that I'm ready for that.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: How important is your Team USA experience to you?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: You learn how to hit with wood, and you learn that you're not going to be as successful as you are at the college level. It helps you learn how to cope with failure and make adjustments.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: How do you think you'll adjust to the better pitchers in the minor leagues, both at the plate and behind it?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: I faced, in the SEC, three first-round pitchers; that's the best of the best. And all the pitchers that went in the first round from college I caught with the USA team, so it's nothing I haven't done before.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: You were hampered this season by an injury, how much did that affect you, and how is it feeling now?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: It wasn't even my back, like it came out, it was in my upper butt. At first, I tried to play through it, and it was hurting me, but after I allowed it to get better, I was able to get going. Once I was healthy, I proved what I was able to do and played how I was capable of playing.\r\n

\r\nInsideTheDome: What position do you see yourself fitting into as a pro? Do you have the defensive ability to stay behind the plate?\r\n

\r\nJ.P. Arencibia: I see myself as a catcher. I've always caught; I've done it for the USA team, and all the pitchers enjoyed throwing to me. All this talk about me not being able to catch is a result of how people saw me when I was hurt, and that's fine, but I'm going to catch, and I'm going to be a solid catcher.\r\n","mobileBody":" ","skipOnMobile":true,"media":[],"dateOverride":"2007-06-07T14:50:00","authorOverride":"Paul Owen","role":"","isPremium":true,"isHotNews":false,"isRumor":false,"syndicationFlag":true,"isClassified":true,"hotNamesLinked":true,"storyImage":"[MEDIA:436836]","mainImage":{},"thumbnailImage":"[THUMBNAIL:436836]","heroImage":{},"authorImage":"","tags":[],"nodes":["3183917","259","71059","313203","313237","313246","313254"],"isActive":true,"inActiveAndMemberHasPublishRights":false,"createdOn":"2007-06-07T14:52:48.223","createdById":"1111062","modifiedOn":"2014-07-06T00:16:54.68","modifiedBy":"51458","imgs":[],"viewStats":[{"from":"2015-05-24T07:00:00","to":"2015-05-24T08:00:00","count":4}],"hasVideo":false,"brandUnsafe":false,"breakingNews":false},"editorsChoice":{"siteUrls":[],"networkUrls":[],"topRibbonWidgets":[],"carouselStoryUrls":[],"storyStreamUrls":[],"videoStories":[{"type":"StorySummary","containerType":"StorySummary","id":"1743455","siteId":"264","isPublicSite":true,"subdomain":"indians","siteFolder":"/mlb/indians","canonicalUrl":"http://www.scout.com/mlb/indians/story/1743455-official-tribe-signs-encarnacion-on-thursday","shortUrl":"http://indians.scout.com/story/1743455-official-tribe-signs-encarnacion-on-thursday","siteName":"Indians Baseball Insider","forumName":"","friendlySubdomain":"Cleveland","title":"Official: Tribe signs Encarnacion on Thursday","subtitle":"","seotitle":"Official: Indians sign Encarnacion to 3-year deal","caption":"Edwin Encarnacion","deck":"A grand gathering took place on Thursday morning to announce the signing of Edwin Encarnacion from Progressive Field's Multipurpose Room. 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