TigsTown: So how does it feel to be a Tiger?
Daniel Schlereth: It feels great, I'm already excited even though I haven't even put on a uniform yet.
TT: Did you have any idea that you might be traded coming into the winter meetings?
DS: No I was completely surprised by it, but that's how it goes, especially being a young guy, can't even take the time sit back or unpack your suitcase because you could be on the move at anytime.
TT: What do you know about Detroit and the organization?
DS: Not really that much, have an old teammate that's on the team but beyond that, don't know a whole lot other than what I've heard and found just since the trade and everything happened.
TT: Have you spoken with GM Dave Dombrowski, manager Jim Leyland or pitching coach Rick Knapp at length?
DS: I actually talked to all three the day I got traded - they were all excited to have me join the team and the organization and just said they were looking forward to seeing me pitch.
TT: You mentioned your old college teammate, current Tigers' reliever Ryan Perry – have you talked to him at all since the trade?
DS: I haven't actually. I'm gonna see him in a couple days though, we're on the same flight up to Detroit for TigerFest, so I'm sure we'll get a chance to talk then.
TT: So you'll be at TigerFest - that's great! Are you excited to meet the fans?
DS: Oh absolutely, I hear that's one of the best parts about the organization are the fans that come out and support the team, so I'm definitely looking forward to meeting some of them.
TT: As the Tigers don't face the D'Backs too often, many Tigers fans haven't seen you pitch yet. For those Tigers fans that haven't, tell them a little about your game.
DS: I'm a very aggressive pitcher, I like to go right at guys and challenge them. I throw a fastball, a 12-6 curve and a change-up. I don't use the change much but since I'm switching leagues and going over to the AL I'm probably gonna have to try and use it a bit more. But my mentality on the mound has always been to go right after guys.
TT: How did you feel your first full big league season went from a personal standpoint?
DS: I wasn't too thrilled to be honest. I had some ups and downs, I had a few outings that I'd like to remember, and then a couple that I'd like to forget, but when those happened, I just go back and look at the film, see where I went wrong and how I can make sure it doesn't happen again. Most of the time it was mechanical issues, so I just try to build from that and get ready to go back out there and go after the next guy I face.
TT: Have you heard anything about what role they see you filling with the club?
DS: No not really - I've always been a back-end reliever, so I just assume I'll come in with that role, but to be honest I don't really care what my role is as long as I can contribute and we win, that's what matters, so whatever I need to do to make that happen, then that's what I'll do for the team.
TT: That's really a great thing to hear, as that's a quality that Tigers' fans truly appreciate, a player that is focused on winning and doing whatever it takes to win.
DS: Absolutely, that's me, whatever I've gotta do so we win.
TT: Do you know when you'll be heading down to Lakeland?
DS: I'm probably gonna get there about five days early, get my feet wet and get settled down in Lakeland. It's a new atmosphere and everything is going to be new for me, so I want to try and get acclimated before spring training actually starts.
TT: What have you been doing this off-season as far as training and workouts?
DS: I've been working out at University of Arizona down in Tucson, throwing and training with a couple of my old teammates. We've been putting a lot of work in, working out six days a week. We get after it, so spring training should be pretty easy from that standpoint as I'm hopefully going to be arriving in pretty good shape.
TT: Giving you the final word, what would you like to say to the new fans in Detroit?
DS: Don't have a ton to say, just want them to know that every time I go out there I give it my all, and just leave it all out on the field. Hopefully I'll fit in, and they'll enjoy seeing me pitch for their team. Like I said, I'll just try my hardest and plan to leave it all on the field and hope they'll appreciate that.
TigsTown would like to thank Daniel for talking with us about his work on the field and joining the organization, and wishes him well in the upcoming 2010 season!