Pirates Prospect Interview: Dilson Herrera

West Virginia Power second baseman Dilson Herrera is batting .260 in 72 games with seven home runs and 37 RBI. Herrera and Altoona outfielder Gregory Polanco join baseball's rising stars for the Sirius XM All-Star Futures Game at Citi Field on July 14 as a part of All-Star Game festivities. PiratesDugout.com's George Von Benko spoke with Herrera recently.

GVB – You were just named to the All-Star Futures Game, are you excited about that opportunity?

DH – I am excited for this opportunity. A chance to get on the field with players like that will be a thrill. This game is a great way to show tools and abilities, and I hope I play well. I look forward to the chance to play in a big league park ... and on TV. But most of all, I'm excited for the game.

GVB – Last year you were Gulf Coast League Player of the Year, looking back were you pleased with what you accomplished.

DH – First of all I thank God for being in this position, because it allows me to work hard and accomplish all the dreams and goals that I set for last year. I'm very proud that my family and friends in my county, saw that I accomplished all those goals.

GVB – You have played most of your games at second base. Are you strictly a second baseman?

DH – I signed as a shortstop, but since I've been here in United States I think the Pirates have a better understanding that I'm going to be a five tool, six tool player at second base and I feel more comfortable now that I know I'm playing just one position and being able to develop the skills that I need and to improve every day.

GVB – Looking at your numbers, for a middle infielder there is a little pop there, you have gap to gap power?

DH – That's a great tool to have as a second baseman. I've seen other players that have developed that skill, I'm a gap to gap hitter and able to make solid contact. One of the things I wanted to accomplish was just stay humble and stay gap to gap and I have developed that tool to hit more home runs maybe than other second basemen.

GVB – How do you feel about the defensive part of your game?

DH – I feel solid, I still have to improve and work very hard every day to continue to be better. That's something that I don't take for granted and I'm very happy and pleased the way things went last year, but I understand that I need to continue to work hard.

GVB – In the Instructional League, what were some of the things they had you working on?

DH – One of the things they had me working on was turning the double play, because at the beginning of the year I had a little problem with the pivot and now I feel more comfortable just by acquiring all the knowledge that was provided to me in the Instructional League.

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