Draft Q&A: 4th Rd. Pick Tim Bascom

In 2006, RHP Tim Bascom was drafted in the 6th round by the San Diego Padres. A failed physical and one year of rehab later, Bascom improved his stock and was selected by the Orioles in the 4th round. Inside, Bascom dishes about going through the draft a second time, how his surgically repaired knee feels and how close he is to signing.

ITW: Last year, you were selected by the San Diego Padres and you two were pretty close to a deal before a knee injury issue cropped up. Can you explain what happened?

Tim Bascom: We had agreed to some terms and I had flown up to get my physical done before I signed my contract. They ended up finding that I had a torn ACL, so the offer got dropped and I told them I was going back to play at college. College didn't work out either, so I've just been rehabbing for a year, playing independent ball.

ITW: Was the trouble with going back to college because you had been represented by someone?

Tim Bascom: I think it had more to do with the school not wanting to go into negotiations trying to get my eligibility back. As soon as you get drafted or head into the minors, you lose your eligibility and have to petition to get it back.

ITW: You played for Bradenton in the South Coast League. What was that experience like?

Tim Bascom: It was a lot of fun. It's an independent league and it's their first year in existence, so they had a few minor details to work out, but it was a fun place to play. Bradenton is a nice place to play and the rest of their parks are pretty nice. It was a good experience for me and it obviously helped my draft stock out.

ITW: After all the rehab with the knee injury, would you say you're back to 100% now?

Tim Bascom: Well, actually, having the knee injury and not being able to work out for a while gave me a chance to build up my upper body, so I'm stronger than I've ever been before. Now that my knee is 100% and I'm stronger than ever before, I'd say that I'm closer to 120% than I was to 100%.

ITW: Did you know that the Orioles were interested in you?

Tim Bascom: Yeah, I had a workout with Joe Jordan and the local scout, Steve Martin, and Nick Presto down in Sarasota. I think it was early May; just a pre-draft workout. They had a couple of guys there with their [radar] guns out, so I had a bullpen there and they showed their interest there. They were real excited to try and get me in the draft this year and it worked out.

ITW: Would you say that you model your game after anybody?

Tim Bascom: I never really thought about that. That's a good question. I don't really have any major leaguer I model my game after, I just try to work in the zone and throw as many strikes as I can. After I get a strike or two and get ahead in the count, I just focus on getting the guy out.

ITW: What pitches do you throw and what velocities do you work at?

Tim Bascom: I have a four-seam fastball, which I throw at 91, 92 and I touched 96 down in the South Coast League. My two-seam fastball is a little less than that, probably 89, 88. Then, I have a knuckle-curveball, or a spike-curveball, some people call it, And that ranges anywhere from 78-84. That just depends on how I want to throw it and what hitter I'm facing in the lineup. I can vary speeds on that.

ITW: Would you say that any one o them, in particular, is your "out" pitch?

Tim Bascom: I feel confident in all the pitches in any situation, any count, anytime in the game. Whatever I feel like throwing, I'll throw. I have a circle-change that I'll mix in there too.

ITW: Since the time you went to college, what part of your game would you say that you've improved to most?

Tim Bascom: Just pitching knowledge and knowing how to pitch a game and how to get deep into a game. Just going out there for one or two innings and knowing what I need to do to get into the 6th, 7th, 8th innings of the game.

ITW: How far along are you in the negotiation process for signing with the Orioles?

Tim Bascom: I'd say we're pretty close. Almost all the terms, we are seeing eye to eye on. I'm working out right now and, hopefully, we'll get signed as soon as possible.

Michael Hollman is the Senior Writer for Inside The Warehouse and can be reached via email at Publisher@InsideTheWarehouse.com

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