After being demoted from San Diego in mid-season, McAnulty had his best minor league season ever, hitting .343/.440/.646; with 50 RBIs in 53 games and a BB/K ratio of 35/38 in 183 at-bats. If anyplace is made for McAnulty to hit, a left-handed hitter whose power is in the gaps and can hit the opposite way, its Fenway Park.
It's just a question if he will get the opportunity.
Paul McAnulty: I just thought it was a good fit, which is the main thing it came down to. There were some other teams, but I liked Boston.
When I've seen you play the biggest value that I've seen in your game is understated. You're not someone that draws a lot of attention to yourself by hitting tape measure home runs, but you always seem to be able to hit and even when you don't its usually an 0-for-2 day with a walk or a sacrifice fly. Do you think the Boston staff really saw more value in you than other teams?
Paul McAnulty: I hope so [laughs]. All of that stuff is interesting, but really the only thing that I can do is to go out and try my best. I really enjoyed my time in San Diego, but it just didn't work out. Boston is another opportunity that I hope I will be able to make the best of.
When you look at your numbers that you put up when you started in left field, .268/.413/.454, with the exception of the power numbers; those are pretty good. Your numbers off the bench, granted in only 38 at-bats weren't that great. How do you improve your numbers off of the bench?
Paul McAnulty: With San Diego, it really was a learning experience. The biggest thing I learned was how important it was to keep the same swing and the same approach every time, try to hit the ball hard. When I started to shorten up my swing or not drive the ball is when I got in trouble. Maybe if I had that approach the whole time I would still be in San Diego. [laughs]. It's all a learning process when you are used to playing every day and you can get a little frustrated.
You put up some great numbers when you went back down to Portland mid-season and put up your best numbers of your career. What was the biggest thing that you learned from going back down?
Paul McAnulty: I think most of it was on the mental part of the game. It really humbled me. I thought either I can sulk or play as hard as I can and see what happens. I felt that I needed to prove what I could do because I knew that I could become a six-year free agent. I have been with this organization my whole career, so I just worked on going out and playing the game as hard as I could each day. I had a great time playing with guys like Will Venable and Matt Antonelli and really learned quite a bit too.
How has the off-season been going for you? In the past you have been coming off of shoulder and knee problems.
Paul McAnulty: I'm 100 percent healthy and feel great. I'm just getting ready to head out cross-country.
What is the best memory you are going to take out of being in the Padres organization?
Paul McAnulty: There are so many in seven years, but probably the biggest one is that they gave me a chance and for that I will always be grateful. They were always good to me, and even thought it didn't quite work out the way I wanted, they were the ones who took the shot; although that walk-off home run in PETCO last year was pretty big too [laughs].
Eventually, everything that ended up with the Padres had to do with me finding the Lord. I gave my life to him in May 2008, which was the best thing that ever happened to me.
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