Padres Prospect Interview: Adys Portillo

Prospect Adys Portillo may be the most exciting pitcher to ever be signed by the San Diego Padres on the international market. Not only does he have the stuff to succeed, he has a terrific mindset. We caught up with Portillo, using the help of a translator.

You got to see PETCO Park after signing. Talk about that experience.

Adys Portillo: First off, I want to thank you for giving me the interview and thank the Padres for bringing me in and giving me an opportunity to realize my dream and bringing me to PETCO Park.

PETCO was just unbelievable. Now, I am working hard to get back there.

Talk about the signing process and how signing with the Padres came about.

Adys Portillo: The process started back in January (of 2008). That was when the Padres first made contact and they continued to follow up with me. They brought me to the Dominican where I got to see the complex and the coaching staff. As the process went along, it felt like there were better opportunities with the Padres and that I had a better shot to get to the big leagues with them.

Talk about the pitches you throw and how comfortable you are with each pitch.

Adys Portillo: I throw a fastball, curveball and changeup. I am very comfortable with the fastball and curveball. I think I can get hitters out with those pitches. I am working really hard to develop and perfect the changeup.

You to to the United States at 16 and get to work with guys who are a lot older than you. How do you deal with that?

Adys Portillo: It was an adjustment, but I went there to work on what I had to work on. I came to the United States to work on my changeup and do whatever the Padres asked me to do. All the other stuff is great. I know I need to learn English to communicate better but am focused on doing whatever the Padres want me to accomplish.

What is your best baseball memory of growing up in Venezuela?

Adys Portillo: Pitching in the finals in Latin America and qualifying for the Little League World Series and winning it.

There are a lot of expectations for you after getting a lot of money to sign. Is that added pressure for you?

Adys Portillo: There is no additional pressure. Actually, what it does is motivate me. It motivates me that the Padres felt good about what they invested in me and up to me to prove them right.

As long as I keep working on ironing out any issues or flaws, my whole goal is to prove the Padres right in investing money and time in me. It is not pressure. It is additional motivation.

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