Padres Draft Interview: Nick Schmidt

The Padres first-round pick Nick Schmidt doesn't act like he will soon make a good chunk of change after being taken 23rd overall. He remains humble and is unwilling to admit he has accomplished anything just yet because "it's going to be different in professional baseball."

What is your greatest asset?

Nick Schmidt: My greatest attribute – I don't know. I don't want to brag – I couldn't tell you.

Did you know that the Padres had interest in you and did you believe they were going to take you as things began to unfold?

Nick Schmidt: I kind of knew they had interest in me before the draft but I really didn't know they had that much interest in me till they called my name, to tell you the truth."

What was the strength of your game while at the University of Arkansas?

Nick Schmidt: From a college standpoint, I pitch off my fastball and get guys out by pitching inside.

It is going to be different in professional ball and I don't know what works until I get there.

Was it a big benefit to play in the SEC, a conference that is traditionally a very good baseball circuit?

Nick Schmidt: I think it is going to be a benefit because a lot of guys from the SEC go to pro ball and take the step to the next level. I think it will benefit me tremendously.

Have you ever been to San Diego and how familiar are you with the team?

Nick Schmidt: I have never been to San Diego. I went to Long Beach once (for the Area Codes) when I was in high school but that is it. I am definitely familiar with the Padres pitchers and everyone from there but I have watched them only on Sunday night baseball. Being in the Midwest, you really don't get west coast team games. So you don't ever get a chance to watch them unless they are on ESPN.

Is stamina a concern for you since you have already pitched over 100 innings and now are heading into a second season of baseball?

Nick Schmidt: That is something that has been mentioned and talking with my advisor he said we are going to look to get some rest. I am pretty sure that is what the Padres want me to do – rest a couple of weeks and then we will get back after it.

One of the things that has been said by scouts about you is that you offer a plus changeup. Is that also your out pitch?

Nick Schmidt: I don't consider it my out pitch but I do consider it my best pitch and favorite pitch to throw because I feel I have command of it better than my other pitches.

You walked roughly 43 batters this year at Arkansas. What do you need to work on to bring that number down?

Nick Schmidt: You're right – that is just commanding your pitches and getting them in the zone for first-pitch strikes, hitting your spots. That is something you develop over time. And getting a breaking pitch over for a strike down in the count is another thing that is going to help you.

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