Q&A with Yankees 30th Round Pick Jorge Perez

We sat down with Yankees' 30th round pick, Jorge Perez, for a Draft Day Q&A session. Find out what the right-handed pitcher from Grand Canyon University says about his game, how he feels being drafted by the Yankees, what he'll bring to the Yankees organization, and much more.

PinstripesPlus.com: Tell us what is going through your mind after being selected by a team like the Yankees.

Jorge Perez: Obviously it's a privilege – its' an honor to be selected by such a great organization. I'm very blessed and I thank God, first and foremost. It's a dream come true, obviously. Just hearing your name get called and get drafted it's so surreal – it's a great moment for me and my family.

PinstripesPlus.com: Were you surprised it was the Yankees that selected you? Had you and the Yankees talked much before the draft?

Perez: We talked here and there but yes, I was kind of surprised. I hadn't heard anything at all [draft day]. I was kind of just going through my day and I wasn't too worried and I get the call and they were wondering, obviously, about the signability but after that we talked for a little bit and the next thing I know I get some texts saying "congrats" and I was like "for what?" and I go on and check that I got selected by them in the 30th round. It was a great moment – I couldn't believe it but it was definitely a great moment.

PinstripesPlus.com: Do you have any idea what the Yankees' organization or farm system is like?

Perez: We talked with the area scout and he told me about it, and obviously it's a great organization – a great farm system and developing [of] players. If everything works out I'd be very honored to go and, obviously, work my way through the minor leagues with a great organization in the New York Yankees.

PinstripesPlus.com: What type of pitches do you throw and at what speeds? Give us a scouting report please - what are your strengths and what do you need to work on the most?

Perez: I start off with my fastball. I love running my two-seamer in on batters. I pitch to contact – I pitch low in the zone, and get all those ground balls and let the defense work. I really love throwing my changeup also, that's one of my favorite pitches. It could get better, if I get my changeup better and work on my secondary pitches, as far as my slider, and have all of those three in the mix, I feel that I could be really dominant on the mound. Obviously, just working on my pitches, and just get stronger and maintain a healthy arm.

PinstripesPlus.com: What speeds do you get on your pitches?

Perez: Fastball, low 90s – 91 to 92. The changeup, I want to say maybe low 80s – 81 to 83, and the slider obviously at 83, 84, 85. Like I said, it could get better … and have a little more of a power slider. So there's still some wiggle room where I need to get better.

PinstripesPlus.com: Did you have a favorite team growing up or a favorite player?

Perez: Favorite team would be – I'm from Los Angeles, California, I was born in Montibello and I grew up in Downey, California – so growing up I would watch the Dodgers a lot. So I guess my team is the Los Angeles Dodgers. I didn't have a favorite player but I just enjoyed watching them [the Dodgers] and now I don't have a favorite player but I have players that I enjoy watching.

PinstripesPlus.com: Who would you compare your stuff to at the Major League level so Yankees' fans can get an idea of what you're like on the mound? And why?

Perez: Growing up, I would also watch John Smoltz – just the way he would pitch off his fastball, he had a great change-up. That's who I kind of grew up watching a lot and I feel like you can learn a lot from John Smoltz – he was really effective with his changeup and, obviously, he had a great fastball and other great pitches. But his fastball, I really loved it a lot and that's how I see myself becoming when I make it there, and that's one of my goals – to play in the Major Leagues for a long time and I'm excited.

PinstripesPlus.com: What would you say is your best moment in baseball and why?

Perez: Obviously this is one of them but I would say going to the World Series, the D-II College World Series with the school. In high school, we didn't have a great team and coming into college we didn't have many coaches and the people backing us up saying "oh yeah, this is a team that's a possible contender to make it all the way" to the World Series. We proved a lot of people wrong and we came together as a team and I enjoyed every moment that we made with that team. We won our regional and made it to the College World Series and unfortunately we got eliminated but … that was a pretty cool moment to share with my teammates at Grand Canyon.

PinstripesPlus.com: Are you looking to sign quickly and get your professional career started right away?

Perez: We're still talking about it. There's nothing on paper yet, nothing's for sure but obviously with time, we'll see where it goes. But no, as of now it's still up in the air.

PinstripesPlus.com: Do you think the pressures of pitching in New York might be a problem?

Perez: I don't see any problem [with the pressure], I just love pitching and I'm going to go out there and compete and take what they give me. Obviously there will be ups and downs but you got to have a positive mindset and go from there and never give up. So, I'm very excited.

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Pinstripes Plus Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Tell us what is going through your mind after being selected by a team like the Yankees.
\r\n
\r\nJorge Perez: Obviously it's a privilege – its' an honor to be selected by such a great organization. I'm very blessed and I thank God, first and foremost. It's a dream come true, obviously. Just hearing your name get called and get drafted it's so surreal – it's a great moment for me and my family.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Were you surprised it was the Yankees that selected you? Had you and the Yankees talked much before the draft?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: We talked here and there but yes, I was kind of surprised. I hadn't heard anything at all [draft day]. I was kind of just going through my day and I wasn't too worried and I get the call and they were wondering, obviously, about the signability but after that we talked for a little bit and the next thing I know I get some texts saying \"congrats\" and I was like \"for what?\" and I go on and check that I got selected by them in the 30th round. It was a great moment – I couldn't believe it but it was definitely a great moment.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Do you have any idea what the Yankees' organization or farm system is like?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: We talked with the area scout and he told me about it, and obviously it's a great organization – a great farm system and developing [of] players. If everything works out I'd be very honored to go and, obviously, work my way through the minor leagues with a great organization in the New York Yankees.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: What type of pitches do you throw and at what speeds? Give us a scouting report please - what are your strengths and what do you need to work on the most?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: I start off with my fastball. I love running my two-seamer in on batters. I pitch to contact – I pitch low in the zone, and get all those ground balls and let the defense work. I really love throwing my changeup also, that's one of my favorite pitches. It could get better, if I get my changeup better and work on my secondary pitches, as far as my slider, and have all of those three in the mix, I feel that I could be really dominant on the mound. Obviously, just working on my pitches, and just get stronger and maintain a healthy arm.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: What speeds do you get on your pitches?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: Fastball, low 90s – 91 to 92. The changeup, I want to say maybe low 80s – 81 to 83, and the slider obviously at 83, 84, 85. Like I said, it could get better … and have a little more of a power slider. So there's still some wiggle room where I need to get better.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Did you have a favorite team growing up or a favorite player?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: Favorite team would be – I'm from Los Angeles, California, I was born in Montibello and I grew up in Downey, California – so growing up I would watch the Dodgers a lot. So I guess my team is the Los Angeles Dodgers. I didn't have a favorite player but I just enjoyed watching them [the Dodgers] and now I don't have a favorite player but I have players that I enjoy watching.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Who would you compare your stuff to at the Major League level so Yankees' fans can get an idea of what you're like on the mound? And why?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: Growing up, I would also watch John Smoltz – just the way he would pitch off his fastball, he had a great change-up. That's who I kind of grew up watching a lot and I feel like you can learn a lot from John Smoltz – he was really effective with his changeup and, obviously, he had a great fastball and other great pitches. But his fastball, I really loved it a lot and that's how I see myself becoming when I make it there, and that's one of my goals – to play in the Major Leagues for a long time and I'm excited.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: What would you say is your best moment in baseball and why?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: Obviously this is one of them but I would say going to the World Series, the D-II College World Series with the school. In high school, we didn't have a great team and coming into college we didn't have many coaches and the people backing us up saying \"oh yeah, this is a team that's a possible contender to make it all the way\" to the World Series. We proved a lot of people wrong and we came together as a team and I enjoyed every moment that we made with that team. We won our regional and made it to the College World Series and unfortunately we got eliminated but … that was a pretty cool moment to share with my teammates at Grand Canyon.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Are you looking to sign quickly and get your professional career started right away?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: We're still talking about it. There's nothing on paper yet, nothing's for sure but obviously with time, we'll see where it goes. But no, as of now it's still up in the air.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Do you think the pressures of pitching in New York might be a problem?
\r\n
\r\nPerez: I don't see any problem [with the pressure], I just love pitching and I'm going to go out there and compete and take what they give me. Obviously there will be ups and downs but you got to have a positive mindset and go from there and never give up. So, I'm very excited.
\r\n
\r\n

\r\n \r\n \r\n \r\n\r\n
\r\n

Are you a monthly or 3-month subscriber to PinstripesPlus.com? Why not get two months free AND get 3 issues of our PinstripesPlus Magazine included by becoming an annual subscriber? Upgrade today to get the most out of your subscription.

\r\n

\r\n

Become an annual subscriber today!

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