Kevin Barry chat transcript

On Tuesday the Braves announced that right-hander Kevin Barry was one of fourteen non-roster players invited to big league camp this spring. On Tuesday night Barry visited with BravesCenter's premium subscribers. Here is a transcript of the chat.

depley: Congrats on the ST invite, are you ready and have you started throwing yet?

Kevin Barry: Thank you. I have been throwing for the past four weeks. We live in a small town and there's another guy that just signed with the Phillies. I've been working out with him. It's been a long offseason, but I'm looking forward to go to Atlanta (for Camp Roger) and then down to spring training with the Braves.

gr82bAnAUTiger: Hi Kevin! How much credit do you give Kent Willis for your turn around last year?

Kevin Barry: Kent's a great pitching coach. With the guys he's developed over the years, you can see his influence. He is a very good pitching coach. I do give him a lot of credit for my turnaround. He got some of the kinks in my mechanics worked out.

depley: If you had to answer the question ground ball or fly ball pitcher, which one are you?

Kevin Barry: Fly ball pitcher. The majority of strikeout pitchers are fly ball pitchers.

MDCD4: Tell us about your pitches.

KevinBarry: Predominantly a fastball and slider pitcher. Then last year I started throwing a split-fingered fastball.

weso1: Thanks for doing this Kevin... How comfortable do you feel with throwing your slider when behind in the count?

KevinBarry: It was always my second pitch. But being able to throw more innings, I feel more confident in it now.

gr82bAnAUTiger: Kevin, what do you think your chances are of making the major league roster out of spring training?

KevinBarry: The only thing I can do is to come into spring training and compete for a job. The rest is up to Bobby Cox and the pitching coach. As long as I take care of what I can do, to compete to the highest of my ability, then that's all I can ask for from my perspective.

depley: Alot of us know very little about you, what is the one thing we SHOULD know?

KevinBarry: I love to hunt and fish....enjoy the outdoors. I'm married.

gr82bAnAUTiger: What does your fastball top out at?

KevinBarry: 94 last year. I've hit 95 before.

weso1: Is there a current pitcher in the major leagues whose pitching style you try to emulate on the mound?

KevinBarry: Dan Kolb. JUST KIDDING

tigger101023: *faints*

KevinBarry: That was Shanks making the joke. I've never really thought about that. Shanks says David Weathers, but what does he know.

weso1: Kevin, you ever throw at a batter on purpose?

KevinBarry: No, never. But sometimes the ball slips out of your hand.

weso1: Batter in the pros you'd most like to face?

KevinBarry: Adam LaRoche.

BillShanks: Hey KB, did you really go to RIDER?

KevinBarry: Yes. Jack Armstrong went there. The old Red. He's not a bad pitcher to emulate.

depley: Did you get a chance to make any good friend in AA that are now on the braves?

KevinBarry: I played with about every one of those guys at some point in time. Most of the older guys, like Horacio and Langerhans and LaRoche I played with at higher levels.

gr82bAnAUTiger: How do you compare your experience starting last year to relieving, and which do you prefer?

KevinBarry: Well since I only had eight starts it's hard to compare. With the stats, I would much prefer starting. But it's two different mindsels. Relieving you have to be ready every night, and with starting you have to be ready every fifth day. It's just two different mindselts. I did have a lot of fun starting at the end of the season. It brought back a lot of memories from when I started when I was growing up.

depley: How did it feel to win the player of the week award last year in Richmond for the international league ? Do they give you a plaque or something for it?

KevinBarry: No I think I got a pat on the back - that's about it - no trophy.

gr82bAnAUTiger: How much confidence do you have in that splitter? That can be a devastating pitch when you're ahead in the count.

KevinBarry: Actually that came along pretty good for me. It's mostly a feel pitch where you're either able to throw it or not. So I do have a lot of confdience in it after throwing it in my starts in Richmond.

MSBraves27: Kevin, what are your expectations for the 06 season?

KevinBarry: My mindset right now is to make the big league team. That's what I've been preparing for this whole offseason. Ever since I signed out of college five years ago, that's all I've been thinkinig about. I'm ready to go compete for a job.

gr82bAnAUTiger: Kevin, who has been the biggest influence on you since joining the Braves?

KevinBarry: I don't think I can narrow it down to one person. Every single pitching coach has helped me - whether it was mentally or physically - with something on the mound. Mike Alvarez, Bill Fishcer, Bruce Dal Canton, and of course Kent Willis. Rick Adair.

tigger101023: Is it strange for you guys that the pen is so wide open this year? Do you like your chances better even though there's like 15 guys competing for 7 spots?

KevinBarry: From a confidence standpoint, it makes it easier that there are more spots open. Instead of having one spot that may be open for fifteen guys. It should be a good competition.

gr82bAnAUTiger: Have you had a chance to talk to Roger McDowell yet? And if so, what is your initial impression of him?

KevinBarry: I just got a call from him today. He left a message on my machine, so he'll call me back. I'm looking forward to talking with him.

gr82bAnAUTiger: Is the splitter the pitch your going to work on the most this spring?

KevinBarry: I'm just going to take all my strengths and compete for a job in big league camp. For me, you just have to get outs. You can't just work on stuff. You have to make an impression by just getting people out.

tigger101023: If we don't acquire anyone, does he have an idea who should close (other than himself, of couse)

KevinBarry: Not really. I'm not the coach or the manager. I haven't been around many of those guys to have an opinion about it. Reitsma has the most saves, so statistically you'd have to give him the edge.

BillShanks: How close do you think you were to making the team last year?

KevinBarry: I was one of the last cuts in big league camp. I thought I had somewhat of a shot. With the Sosa trade, and maybe a couple of other factors, there was a very good shot, but it didn't work out. Okay guys thanks for the questions. Talk to you soon. Go Braves!

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