Michael Watt: It was. We had Padres scouts at our games through the summer, and a lot of our guys would joke around and say that I was going to get traded. I never really had an idea of who the player would be. I knew the chances were there because scouts were coming to see us. I didn't find out, though, until the day I was traded. It was very much a surprise.
Being traded for a future Hall of Famer like Greg Maddux – how does it feel to part of a trade for such a high caliber pitcher?
Michael Watt: It is an honor. It is really cool to be able to tell people about that. Even if they know just a little bit about baseball, everyone knows who Greg Maddux is. It is something I am definitely going to be able to tell my family for the rest of my life. It is a pretty big deal. I am thankful for that. And it looks like a real good organization to be in right now so I am excited for that.
Talk a little bit about your stuff. I got to see you pitch at Instructs but what is the real scouting report because I may have seen you when you were tired?
Michael Watt: I feel like I had much better stuff at the beginning of the year – and for most of the year. I was always a fastball/curveball guy until this year. This was the first year that I started to really develop a changeup. The changeup came in real good late. The curveball – which you saw – was terrible. I think it will be there because I have always had a pretty good curveball. I think the arm was a little tired from the long season.
I am looking forward to spring and hopefully I will have all three of my pitches.
Was what you experienced in Instructs a mechanical thing you felt like you were working through or just a tired arm?
Michael Watt: I didn't feel like it was mechanical at all. I just think I was tired. I am sure it was mechanical in that I was tired and the arm angle felt like it was almost different on every pitch. I struggled getting consistency. I felt like it was hard to snap it off like I wanted to. I didn't really have a feel for it. My arm was dragging and at a different speed every time.
You went out to Instructs with the Dodgers and then come over to the Padres. Everyone has a plan for you – how has it changed since coming over?
Michael Watt: (The Dodgers) lost their pitching coordinator, so I wasn't working on too much – just the breaking ball. Since coming over here, they wanted to work on my breaking ball more. Not much has changed. They both have the same sort of fundamentals. I don't think too much has changed.
How tough is it to come into a new environment? Many of these guys have been here, know each other, and are building their rapport with the coaching staff.
Michael Watt: I had already met a couple of guys that did get traded like me. My roommate, Steve Garrison, was traded from the Brewers. Evan Scribner who was traded from the Diamondbacks. It seems like I am not the only minor leaguer that was traded. I don't feel that different. It is kind of a shock to be with a whole different group after being with the same people for two years. I will get to meet everyone in spring.
How much have you matured in the two years since being drafted out of high school?
Michael Watt: Oh wow, a whole lot. A couple of my best friends within the Dodgers system are 23 and 24. I have really grown up a lot – just from being around older guys all the time.
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