Padres Draft Interview: Josh Spence

Josh Spence is expected to go to the Cape Cod League to prove to the San Diego Padres that he is better than a ninth-round pick. While he has that goal in mind, he also sounds ready to begin his professional career.

Josh, first congratulations on getting selected by the Pades in the ninth-round. I know it is not exactly ideal after gong to the Angels in the third-round. Talk a little bit about what you are feeling today.

Josh Spence: The spring hasn't exactly panned out as I planned so I decided to come back to school. Now I have been presented with a great opportunity by the San Diego Padres and hopefully everything goes smoothly and I will be wearing a Padres uniform in no time.

Talk a little bit about the injury first. How did it happen and where are we today?

Josh Spence: Essentially the injury kept me from pitching this spring. However, with the correct rehab by the doctors and the training staff at Arizona State I was able to build up the strength to pitch this summer. I will be out in the Cape, and hopefully, I will transition to professional baseball smoothly.

Is going to the Cape Code league a validation – to say I am better than where I was selected. I was a ninth rounder, but going to the Cape, now I am back to where I should have been, as a third round guy?

Josh Spence: I was picked in the ninth round, but that doesn't mean I can't pitch like a first rounder. That being said, I just want to enter professional baseball with the right attitude, and that is to be a great teammate and do the right things and progress through the ranks smoothly.

Talk a little bit about your repertoire, what pitches you throw and what speeds you throw them at?

Josh Spence: With candor, I would not say I am a high velocity guy, I work on control. If you have seen me pitch, I am not going to blow you away but I am going to make you hit my pitch. I look forward to pitching to wood bats this summer and, hopefully, to keep pitching to wood bats.

What is your "out" pitch?

Josh Spence: I am strong believer that there is no "out" pitch, but it pays to set up the hitter and make him conform to your game plan. With that in mind, I have four or five pitches I like to use and I set them up in various ways. I would not say I have one "out" pitch, but rather I like to think I have a good game plan when I start.

This is your third time being selected. This is kind of old hat for you almost, is it not?

Josh Spence: Baseball is a great game, and I do not want to take anything for granted. I think that attitude is not necessary. I have been blessed with a great opportunity by the Padres, and I look forward to transitioning everything smoothly.

How often do you get a chance to go back home to Australia?

Josh Spence: In the last four years, I have been home collectively three months. I went home for Christmas for about two weeks and I spent one summer back in Australia. Other than that, I have enjoyed the college life over here, worked my butt off over the summer, and that has pretty much been the college experience.

How did you decide on Arizona State?

Josh Spence: I just wanted to go to the best baseball school in the country. At the time, they were knocking off Pac 10 championships like it was a joke I wanted to be a part of that. In 2009, I was blessed with that opportunity. Unfortunately, in 2010, it did not exactly pan out the way I planned it, but I was blessed to be a part of the team as long as I was.

I know it is unfair maybe to compare yourself to a major leaguer, but have other people told you that you remind them of X or Y person?

Josh Spence: I am just some college kid who just got drafted by the Padres. I don't think I can start talking about comparing myself to a major leaguer. I am just gong to be Josh Spence and pitch to my capabilities and have a fun time doing it and see what happens.

What is your demeanor on the mound?

Josh Spence: I am strong believer that, though it is a cliche, one pitch at a time. You can't let the game get too far ahead of you. The game can quicken up, and I just try to slow the game down, throw my pitch at my spot and see if it works out. I am very confident in what I do, and I have a certain swagger. I am very confident about my abilities.

You've bypassed going into the professional ranks twice, is it possible you can do it a third time and go back to Arizona state for your senior season?

Josh Spence: I am ready for professional baseball. I look forward to the possibilities that San Diego has to offer.

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