Interview: Cardinals Rule 5 Pick Shooter Hunt

Dustin Mattison completes our Rule 5 interview series with the third of three newest members of the St. Louis Cardinals organization, pitcher Shooter Hunt.

Coming into the 2008 MLB First-Year Player Draft, Shooter Hunt was a player reportedly on the St. Louis Cardinals' radar. Over three years later, the organization brought Hunt into the organization when they nabbed him during the minor league phase of last week's Rule 5 draft.

The Minnesota Twins used the 31st overall pick on the senior who had finished with a record of 9-4 with a 2.68 ERA in 16 starts for the Green Wave. In 100.2 innings, Hunt struck out 126 while walking 56.

Injuries have never allowed Hunt to find his groove as a professional. In fact, he has struggled not only with the injury bug, but also with command issues.

The 25-year-old has 236 walks and 219 strikeouts in only 193 minor league innings. During 2011, Hunt pitched in the Florida State League where he walked 61 while compiling 46 strikeouts in 61 innings.

Before the 2008 draft, minor league expert Frankie Piliere said that Hunt had the potential of a frontline starter and projected him as a future number two. A fantastic athlete, Hunt helped his high school's basketball team to a state title in 2005.

With Hunt offering tremendous upside and very little risk, the Cardinals rolled the dice on a pitcher that could pay tremendous dividends if his flaws are remedied.

Hunt took the time recently to share his thoughts on joining the Cardinals organization.

Dustin Mattison: What were you doing when you found out the Cardinals had selected you in the Rule 5 draft? Has anyone from the Cardinals made contact with you?

Shooter Hunt: I was in a workout session when my agent called and informed me that I was selected by the Cardinals. I've had a couple people from the Cardinals call just to get in touch, and also to get some medical stuff.

DM: What about Mark Hamilton? Like you, he is a product of Tulane.

SH: Though I never got a chance to play with Mark at Tulane, I've heard many stories of how great he can be (and has been) especially when talking about the great 2005 Tulane baseball team.

DM: Did you have any forewarning that you might be selected?

SH: I didn't have any expectations about being selected. All that I knew was that it was a possibility.

DM: How exciting is it that you have the possibility of working with Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan?

SH: I'm very excited to work with everyone in the Cardinals system. Dave Duncan has a great reputation in all of the baseball community for his work with pitchers.

DM: What do you know about the Cardinals organization?

SH: While with the Twins, I played against the Cardinals in the Appy League, Midwest League, and Florida State League, and they have always had good players. It is evident that the St. Louis Cardinals are all about winning. The organization is one of, if not the best, and has produced countless great players as well as championships. The fan-base in St. Louis and the rest of the Midwest is second to none, and it truly lends itself to being a "baseball town."

DM: How are you spending your offseason?

SH: I've been spending the off-season trying to get more explosive by working out and throwing. I enjoy playing basketball to stay in shape, but can also be found watching movies in my spare time.

DM: Tell me something about yourself that Cardinals fans should know.

SH: Cardinals fans should know that I am fully committed to the continued excellence in the city of St. Louis and with the St. Louis Cardinals.

Earlier interviews in this series:
Cardinals Rule 5 Pick Barret Browning
Cardinals Rule 5 Pick Erik Komatsu

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