RC Interview with Johnny Giavotella

The Royals selected second baseman Johnny Giavotella in the second round of the 2008 draft, and the 5-foot-8 sparkplug ignited the Burlington Bees in last season's second half. On Tuesday afternoon, RC caught up with Giavotella to discuss his time with the Bees, and his expectations for this season.

Royals Corner: First off, Johnny, could you talk a little bit about your experience at Burlington last year and winning the Midwest League Championship?

Johnny Giavotella: It was an awesome experience. To even hear that those guys had a bad first half is unbelievable because of all the talent they had. We just came together at the right time and got hot, and we were clicking on all cylinders at the end of the year.

RC: You seemed to gel with your teammates there pretty quickly.

JG: It was easy. They welcomed me with open arms, and they were very nice to me. They were just easy to get along with, and I played well with them.

RC: You started hitting right away. Did you see much difference between Midwest League pitching and what you saw in college?

JG: Yeah, there was a little bit of an adjustment. But I played in the Cape Cod League for a couple of years, so it wasn't overwhelming. It took a little while to adjust, but I made the adjustment pretty well.

RC: What would you say was the biggest surprise for you in the jump to professional baseball?

JG: I'd say the speed of the game. Everyone's fast, and all the pitchers throw hard. There's just a lot of talent at this level.

RC: How's your spring training going?

JG: It's going well. I'm having a lot of fun, enjoying this nice weather, and just working on my game. Hopefully I'll have a good year at Wilmington.

RC: What types of things are you working on at the plate right now?

JG: I would say mostly moving guys over. Just small ball like bunting. My swing feels really good right now, so I'm just working on other parts of my game.

RC: Defensively, what would you say is your biggest challenge right now?

JG: I would say my footwork around second base. Second base is kind of a new position to me. I've only been playing it for a couple of years now, so I'm just working on my footwork. Turning the double play, and [inaudible] my feet towards second base as well.

RC: Thanks a lot. Thanks for talking with me.

JG: Thank you.

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