Q & A With Blake McGinley

To some he is a surprise, but to those who have watched him consistently his performance this year with the Binghamton Mets is no surprise at all. If there is one thing that is absolutely certain about Blake McGinley, it is the certainty that he will throw strikes. He is a walking advertisement for consistency. He simply throws the ball over the plate and refuses to walk anybody. He throws a fastball in the high 80's with a good curve and a very good changeup that he says is his "out pitch".

Tuesday night, on a 3-2 count he struck out Tyler Von Schell, the Navigators first baseman on a 77MPH changeup. Some doubt his talent but the numbers speak for themselves. So far this season, he has struck out 30 while walking only 2 in 24 innings. He's 2-0 with a 3.00 ERA and has one save.

In a very exciting win for the B-Mets, he pitched two innings and true to form, he walked none while striking out two. Putting things in perspective, he struck out as many in the seventh inning of tonight's game as he has walked the entire season. The first three Navigators of the game all scored but the Mets came back to tie, scoring a run in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th, inning. Then in the sixth Norwich had a runner on second and a groundball was hit to third. It should have been an easy play for David Wright but the ball took a crazy bounce and caromed so hard of Wright's chest that it flew about twenty feet into the air allowing the runner from second to score on an infield single. The Mets were down 4-3 going into the bottom of the ninth, but Prentice Redman led off the inning with a clutch Home Run to tie the game. Justin Huber followed with a single. He was bunted over to second by Josh Pressley. Chase Lambin was intentionally walked and then Gil Velazquez, new from A ball, hit the game winning single to left field.

Before the game I had an opportunity to sit down with Blake McGinley:

NYF: You're from Southern California, what made you go to college at Texas Tech?

McGinley: Money. I got a scholarship.

NYF: What was your major?

McGinley: Business.

NYF: You know, it seems like every player I interview was a business major.

McGinley: Yeah, that's right we're all businessmen. We like money, I guess.

NYF: Did you expect to get drafted?

McGinley: Yeah, I knew I had good stuff so I wasn't too concerned.

NYF: You grew up in California, went to college in Texas, and played in St. Lucie, Brooklyn, Capital City, and now Binghamton. What has been your favorite place to pitch?

McGinley: Brooklyn. The atmosphere there was amazing.

NYF: You have a fastball, a curveball, and what else?

McGinley: I throw a changeup and the occasional slider which I mostly throw to lefties.

NYF: Are you working on developing any other pitches?

McGinley: I'm working real hard on developing a cutter which I can use to jam hitters.

NYF: What's your out pitch? The one you throw when the count is 3-2.

McGinley: My changeup.

NYF: Let me read you something from Baseball America: "He may nit pick his way all the way to the big leagues. It is impossible to explain McGinley's success as he has fringy stuff, no trick pitch, and not even a particularly deceptive delivery,…" When you hear or read something like that does it get you down or does it fuel you and make you want to prove the report wrong?

McGinley: I've heard that before. No, that guy has probably never picked up a baseball. It's just part of the game. It doesn't bother me at all.

NYF: I understand that. The first review of my writing said I "wasted the reader's time and trees." Coming into this season you had walked 50 while striking out 220 in 191 innings, very respectable numbers. This year, your first time in AA, you have walked 2 while striking out 28. How do you explain your amazing BB:K ratio.

McGinley: I hate to walk hitters. I mean, I'd rather give up a hit. I just go after every hitter and make them get a hit off my pitch.

NYF: You have finished 57 out of 81 games that you pitched in these last two years. Do you see yourself as a closer, middle reliever, or a starter?

McGinley: For right now, middle relief, but hopefully one day a starter.

NYF: This is your first time in AA. Is there a noticeable difference from A?

McGinley: There's a difference. Guys are obviously a little more talented, but the biggest difference is the mental part of the game, the experience.

NYF: Have you gained a lot of experience since being here?

McGinley: Yeah, this game is 90% mental and you're always learning.

NYF: Do you feel like you developed from a thrower to a pitcher?

McGinley: Yeah definitely, it comes with experience. The more you pitch, the more you learn how to pitch.

NYF: When you move around in the minor leagues, does it take a while to develop battery chemistry with a new catcher?

A: No, I've been with Huber for a couple of years now so we know each other pretty well and we're both on the same page.

NYF: Does it take a while to adjust to a new pitching coach?

McGinley: No not really. I just go out and listen to what they have to say.

NYF: New pitching coach every year doesn't mess with your mechanics or your head at all?

McGinley: If they change anything mechanics wise, it's usually slight so it doesn't bother me at all.

NYF: When you get to AA, do they change anything right away?

McGinley: No, they let you go out and pitch for a couple of starts and then if you're struggling and they see an area that they can help you in, they'll tinker.

NYF: What do you think of MLB putting Spiderman advertisements on the bases?

McGinley: Hmmm, well if it makes them money, then I guess it's O.K.

NYF: You know they're getting about one A-Rod at bat for all those advertisements.

McGinley: Yeah, well, every little bit helps.

Amazin Clubhouse Top Stories