Padres Prospect Interview: David Pauley

San Diego Padres prospect David Pauley is pitching in the California League for the Lake Elsinore Storm. After successful campaigns at Eugene and Fort Wayne, Pauley has been listed as one of the top ten prospects in the system. This year he has faced some struggles but at 21 and in the toughest pitching league in the system his future is bright.

David Pauley has gone 5-6 with a 4.19 ERA in 18 starts for the Storm. He leads the team in innings pitched with 101 and is tied with Jon Huber for the most strikeouts with 83.

John Conniff: You have made several top ten prospects lists heading into this year. Does that put more pressure on you to perform knowing people both outside the organization and inside are expecting big things from you?

David Pauley: Yeah, it puts a little bit of pressure on you and just makes you want to go out there and show that you are that person that you can gout and have a good start every time you go out there. Show the stuff that they say that you have.

I think it is from myself, putting a little bit more pressure on myself to show what they say is true. I have the stuff that I do and I need to show that I do so I put that pressure on myself.

John Conniff: Has the San Diego Padres organization told what sort of plans they have for you in terms of advancing through the system? Is the plan to have you stay here throughout this year and how do you feel when you are here and other guys are advancing through the system?

David Pauley: They really haven't said. I am basically right now going one step at a time. I am getting my starts in where I can and if I stay here the whole year that is fine, great. It gives me a chance to have success. If I get moved up, I get moved up. I just have to wait for my turn and hope that it goes.

John Conniff: Can you talk a little bit about the differences between the Midwest League and the California League?

David Pauley: Definitely the hitters – and the parks, too. The ball carries a lot more here than it does in the Midwest League. The parks here are a little smaller and guys are just better hitters. Sure enough, they are just better hitters. Guys have advanced from that league and it is all the better guys from that league. It is definitely a big adjustment.

John Conniff: How have you handled being one of the youngest guys in the California League and what does it mean to you?

David Pauley: That also gets you up a little bit for every game. I may be only 21 but I showed that I can pitch at this level against guys that are older than me.

John Conniff: What was the reasoning behind signing out of high school and foregoing a college career that may have made you a higher draft pick?

David Pauley: It wasn't that I wasn't really into school or anything. Baseball – it has always been my dream to play professional baseball and I got the shot and I took it. I had opportunities to go to college but the opportunity was there and I didn't know if I ever would have that chance again, so I took it when it was there.

John Conniff: You have been pretty successful at each stop in the minors but as we all know it is an evolving process. What do you need to work on to improve your game?

David Pauley:I think the mind game and just basically control. That is going to be the biggest thing. In high school you can just throw it by everybody and not really worry about hitting your spots or doing this or doing that. In this league you have to be able to throw where you want to every pitch and have a game plan and follow that game plan throughout the whole time.

John Conniff can be reached at

MadFriars Top Stories