Padres Prospect Interview: Anthony Bass

Anthony Bass had a lot innings under his belt after being signed by the San Diego Padres so they moved him into the bullpen. It was a different situation for a college starter but allowed him to recharge and get ready for full season ball with a starting role.

You got your first taste of the North West league in Eugene. You're in a little bit of a different role out here. You had been starting and then you come here and you're a reliever.

Anthony Bass: I've been relieving now that I'm in the closer role. I thought it was going to be a little more different but, honestly, I just go out there and just do my thing. I don't really think of it as a huge difference between programs, starting pitching. I just go out there a just go after them with my stuff.

Is there something you're working on out here, something specific Rasjich's come to you and said "I want you to do this"?

Anthony Bass: No, not really, they've all pretty much commended me. They say I have four quality pitches and just said to start perfecting them. They're really working on everyone's changeup, so right now I'm just working on my changeup and commanding my fastball more.

So, you come in here in relief. Odds are you probably aren't going to get to all four pitches. I know some days you're not going to have any one or two of them anyway. How difficult is that choice when you're coming in to the game, and when do you know, when you're in the ‘pen?

Anthony Bass: Well yeah, of course, when you're down in the ‘pen you see what, you kind of have a feel for what's comfortable. And then, once you're in the game, actually, skip was telling me, Riddoch was telling me, that I have four quality pitches, but sometimes I fall in love with my fastball. He said at this level, with four quality pitches, start using your other pitches more and he said you'll be amazed at the results. I started doing that and over my past few outings, they've been pretty good for me. He actually says use all my pitches when I come out in relief. That's what I've been doing and it's been working for me pretty well.

One day I was out there, I guess you were throwing a slider every once in a while in there and that ball was taking off. He was lining up on the outside corner and the ball was still going further outside off Emmanuel Quiles' glove. Does it move that much at times?

Anthony Bass: I couldn't really control it that night. Usually I can spot it right up on the black and the outside, but it was just biting. Tried to find something else, thank God my changeup was on last night, so I was just going to that.

You mentioned the changeup, everybody working on it. You come in with a quality changeup, what is there to work on? What do you mean you're working on it?

Anthony Bass: You always want to perfect everything. There's always work for it. I think my changeup is one of my better pitches. Still, I think there is room for improvement as far as just locating it more; sometimes I can just throw it right over the plate and usually it bottoms out. Inside, outside, is what I'm working on, just locating wherever I want.

Now, you've got that long stride we talked about, the Lincecum style a little bit. Is it tough to land that foot in your perfect line where you want to be each time?

Anthony Bass: I don't find it really difficult. I just kind of let my mechanics and let my motion go, and what happens, happens. Usually I don't even focus on my landing, it just happens the way it does and I just let the ball fly.

It almost looks like there are two different deliveries, one for the stretch, and one for the windup.

Anthony Bass: Out of the stretch, sometimes I like to mix it up, slice it quick to the plate, sometimes I like to get a nice leg kick and go to the plate. Just kind of altering my mechanics, not really my mechanics, but all through my rhythm to the plate so the base runners can't get into a groove and "alright, he's going up every time, so as soon as he goes up, I'm gone".

Now, one of the things I did notice, it seems like you are a quick worker, maybe one of the quickest on the team that I saw. I know that's the mantra that they guys want, but is that something that's natural for you too?

Anthony Bass: Yeah, I like working quick, not only for myself, I think I like to work quick as a pitcher, and also, it helps my fielders because they don't want to be out there standing forever. They want to get back and hit. As long as they're fresh and they're going to come back and hit and usually give us some more runs if they're fresh compared to sitting out there and waiting and waiting. So, yeah, I kind of like moving quick.

Did you feel tired at all? You had the long season, you come back. Did you feel that at all?

Anthony Bass: Actually, I don't really feel all that tired honestly. I had a nice break in between my Division-II season. And now, I had about two, two and a half weeks off which was really nice. It's just like summer ball to me and I'm ready to go. I don't really feel tired yet. Hopefully I never do.

How is the off-season going to change for you? You don't have school anymore, unless you plan on going back?

Anthony Bass: No, I can't, with instructionals of course. I don't really plan on going back to school this fall, unfortunately, but I'm on to bigger and better things hopefully.

So, what's going to change then? You get a whole off-season to kind of prepare your body for eventually starting, eventually doing some of the things you want to do.

Anthony Bass: This off-season for sure, if I'm fortunate enough to go to instructionals, go there until October. Then, when I come back, I know our strength coach at my school has offered to let me use the equipment and the facilities still. I'll probably be working out there with my college team that I played with last year and just staying in shape and working hard, so next year when I come in to spring training, I'll already be ahead of the game.

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