RC Interview with Daniel Cortes

Daniel Cortes was one of the key acquisitions in this past week's flurry of trades. The 6-5, 205 lbs. righty was acquired in the Mike MacDougal trade after posting a 4.01 ERA with 96 Ks in 107.2 innings pitched this season for Kannapolis (low-A). Cortes arrived in Burlington on Wednesday night, and on Thursday RC sat down with him to discuss his repertoire and his thoughts about the trade.

Royals Corner: First off, Daniel, welcome to the Royals organization. What was your reaction when you heard that you'd been traded?

Daniel Cortes: Coach called me into his office, and I thought I was going to get moved up to Winston-Salem. But it turned out that I got traded. I was surprised at first. I really didn't want to get traded – I wanted to stay in the organization. But it was a good opportunity for me, and I took it in a good way.

RC: Do you know much about the Royals' organization yet?

DC: Actually not really. I don't know much yet.

RC: Have you talked with Dayton Moore or anyone else in the front office yet?

DC: No, I haven't. I haven't talked to anybody. The only person I've talked to was Amy, who works at that the front desk. I don't know what she does, but she's the only one I've spoken with. I just got in last night.

RC: Tell us a little about what type of pitcher you are. What pitches do you throw?

DC: I've always thought I was a power pitcher. I throw a fastball, curveball, slider, and change. I'm mostly a strikeout guy, I guess, but sometimes I'm also a finesse pitcher. I just let the guys hit the ball and put it in play.

Cortes throws a fastball, curveball, change-up, and slider

RC: Among your repertoire, which pitch do you think needs the most work right now?

DC: I haven't thrown for three days, so it seems like I have to get my change-up back, because I kind of lost the feeling after three days' rest. I think I also need to get the feel back on my curveball. Hopefully in a couple of days when I start my game, I get them back. We'll see what happens.

RC: What's your best pitch? Which one do you use as your "out pitch?"

DC: Mainly my fastball and my slider. But sometimes I use my curve and my change against the lefties, but mostly for righties, and sometimes for lefties, I go with my fastball and slider to get guys out.

RC: Are you comfortable using all of your pitches on any count, or do you mainly use your fastball when you fall behind?

DC: I can throw them on any count. I have confidence throwing any pitch on any count.

RC: Let's talk a bit about your season thus far. It seems like you got off to a slow start, but you've been outstanding for the last two months or so. Did you make any adjustments during the season to turn it around, or what have you been working on?

DC: It seemed like my first five games I started, I was playing scared. After that, I just gained a little more confidence. Once the second half started, I thought I was "the man," I just started hitting my spots and getting guys out. I got more ground balls and strikeouts and felt more confident, and it turned out a lot better in the second half.

RC: Do you know anything about the Midwest League? Have you had a chance to see any scouting reports yet?

DC: It's a long ways from home, just like it was in North Carolina. I heard it was mostly cornfields out here, and that's about it. I'm going to have to rely on the catchers and pitching coach at first to help me with that.

RC: Do you know when you're scheduled to make your first start? Has anyone in the organization told you yet?

DC: Yeah, the pitching coach told me I was starting this Saturday. I'm looking forward to it, and I'm getting pumped up for it. We'll see what happens.

RC: Well Daniel, we wish you the best of luck, and once again, welcome to the organization.

DC: Thanks.

Cortes makes his first start on Saturday vs. Lansing

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