With a .519 on-base percentage, the 6-foot-5, 240-pound first baseman packs a wallop into a large frame; he ranks third all-time in career homers, hitting 16 this past season.
Dykstra led the team in every major offensive category – playing on a team that was largely devoid of hitters to help protect him.
In 2008, Dykstra hit a team-leading .323 with 16 home runs and 50 RBIs. He led the Deacons in hitting, RBIs, runs, home runs, slugging and on-base percentage.
Smiling at his success and happy to be taken by the hometown team, Dykstra was ecstatic to join the Padres farm system.
Talk to us about being selected by the San Diego Padres and the feeling you had going 23rd overall.
Allan Dykstra: I got a call just before my name went up.
‘The Padres want to select you. Would you go?'
I pretty much jumped out of my seat. It is pretty much the perfect situation. I could not have asked for anything more. People wondered if I would go in the first round or not and I end up going in the first round to the team I grew up watching. I couldn't be more excited about the situation.
Your approach at the plate fits well into the San Diego Padres plans for patiently aggressive hitting. Can you talk about your ability to see pitches and how it has helped your game?
Allan Dykstra: Being patient – I guess they would call it being an advanced hitter. You are obviously going to be successful if you aren't swinging at bad pitches. There are only a few people who can do that – like Vladimir Guerrero.
I think patience has helped me to be successful. A lot of hard work goes into that and recognizes pitches, understanding what pitches you can handle and having good plate recognition. I feel that kind of approach really helps anyone hitting. The better the pitch, the harder you are going to hit it and put a good swing at it.
Is there such a thing as being too patient?
Allan Dykstra: I have definitely experienced that. There have been times this year where sometimes I got pitched around and you aren't expecting a certain pitch. Say like a 2-0 count, I would say, ‘There is no way I am getting a fastball here. They are just going to walk me.' All of a sudden you get a fastball that you could hit so there definitely is a line to being too patient. That is something I am going to work on. There is such a thing as being too patient.
Matt Antonelli – a Wake Forest alumnus – is also in the system. Have you had a chance to talk to him and are there similarities in your games?
Allan Dykstra: I have not. He has a very similar approach. When I came in, we both had very patient approaches at the plate. We had the walk records at Wake Forest. We are similar hitters – kind of different styles. I feel that kind of approach is something the Padres really looked into. I have not talked to him. I have been swamped with calls.