Padres Prospect Interview: Seth Johnston

Seth Johnston was drafted by the Padres in the fifth round of the 2005 draft. Johnston, 22, a 6-foot-3, 200-pound shortstop was one of the stars of the University of Texas' championship team this year and has drawn comparisons to Dodgers second baseman Jeff Kent.

A middle infielder, he is thought to profile more as a second baseman, the position he played last year, and his best attribute is his bat. Like all of the Padres draft picks in 2005, he posted an excellent BB/K ration in his last college season of 21/33.

After a slow first month (.159 for July) brought on by a long college season, Seth has caught fire in July hitting .352 with a .590 slugging percentage. In the field, he's cut his errors in half, and profiles as a solid defensive infielder.

John Conniff: What is the biggest difference for you from playing at the University of Texas to being an Emerald?

Seth Johnston: Well the weather is a lot hotter in Texas than it is here, and the sweet spot is a lot smaller on a wooden bat. You really have to hit it in the right spot.

John Conniff: There has been talk about moving you to second base, but you are playing shortstop right now. Have the Padres brought this up to yet?

Seth Johnston: No, not really, but I played some second base at Texas too. I really feel that I can play any position on the field, I just want to be in the lineup everyday.

John Conniff:What type of hitter do you see yourself as? You have hit with some power up here, including a two home run and seven RBI output the other night?

Seth Johnston: That was nice, but I really see myself as more of a gap to gap hitter. For a lot of guys power is the last thing to develop.

John Conniff: The University of Texas, your team, won the College World Series this year which made for a pretty long season. How are you holding up?

Seth Johnston: It was a long season. I took two weeks off right after the season. When I was warming up here that was the first time I had picked up a baseball in awhile. The first at bats I was something like 4-for-50, so it showed, but since then I think I've played pretty well.

John Conniff: Have the Padres talked to you about playing in the Instructional League yet?

Seth Johnston: Not yet, but I expect to hear one way or another fairly soon. If they do decide to send me, I would love to go.

John Conniff: We talked with Rob Deer, the Padres minor league hitting coordinator, who is visiting Eugene this week. Has Rob worked with you?

Seth Johnston: Yeah a little bit. We worked on having a slow body, quick hands and staying through the ball. It's all about fundamentals, you just need someone to remind you of them.

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