Padres Draft Interview: Angel Mercado

Winner of the MEAC Championship MVP, Angel Mercado parlayed a successful year with Bethune-Cookman into being picked in the MLB Draft by the San Diego Padres. A confident player, Mercado hit .404 and was in the top five in the league in six categories.

Talk about being selected by the San Diego Padres and what it meant to you.

Angel Mercado: It was a good feeling. I was pretty excited. I was watching the Internet and I had just walked away in the 22nd round and then one of my friends called me to say congratulations and I said, ‘Can you believe I just walked away from the computer!'

‘Are you for real?'

My mom and dad were jumping up and down.

Talk a little bit about your game and the strength of your game.

Angel Mercado: The strength of my game is my hitting. I am a good hitter and have a lot of concentration on the game. I am also an aggressive player. I like to anticipate everything.

When you say you are aggressive does that mean you also have some speed and expect to steal some bases?

Angel Mercado: Yes. I always like to run.

Do you consider yourself a power hitter since I noticed you had almost as many homers as doubles?

Angel Mercado: I can be a power hitter but I like to put the ball in play and drive the ball.

Do you have a different approach at the plate with men on base?

Angel Mercado: Yes, but it depends on the situation of the game. Do I have to move them over, or if the runner is in scoring position I know I have to drive them in. It is a little bit different approach but I know what I have to do.

You were hit by 12 pitches – did the pitchers just not like you?

Angel Mercado: Since I was the fourth hitter in the lineup, I think the pitchers were just trying to do too much. I did get hit a lot of times because of that. I think because I was hitting in the fourth spot they just made some mistakes when they tried to do too much.

What do you look forward to now that you are headed into professional baseball?

Angel Mercado: I just want to start playing pro ball. I am so excited. I want to prove myself and play very hard every day. I am going to show everyone what I have.

You have a friend in the organization in R.J. Rodriguez. How nice is it to come to the Padres already knowing someone well?

Angel Mercado: It is very nice. We knew each other for a long time and it will be exciting to have him in the same organization.

Talk about your defensive work in the outfield.

Angel Mercado: I am always concerned about my defensive work since I know I can hit. I am a good hitter so I am not worried about that as much. I am more concerned about my defense because you have to play defense to and it isn't always about hitting. I am a pretty good outfielder and try to catch everything that is around me.

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