Q&A with Yankees 32nd Round Pick Andy Suiter

We sat down with Yankees' 32nd round pick, Andy Suiter, for a post-draft Q&A session. Find out what the left-handed pitcher from UC-Davis says about being drafted by the Yankees, what he believes is his greatest strength, what his immediate plans are in regards to signing, and more.

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

Andy Suiter: It's pretty amazing. At first I didn't see my name on the draft list, but I was on the phone with my brother and he told me I just got drafted by the Yankees. That moment was pretty surreal, I mean I still can't believe it. It's true what people say, the Yankees are the most well known sports team in the world and it is pretty exciting. I still haven't come down, I'm pretty pumped.

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

Suiter: I talked to the main area scout about two weeks ago and he said the Yankees were really interested in me. He asked me what I would sign for and he didn't really know if they would accept the amount I asked for. So I didn't really know if they were going to draft me or not.

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

Suiter: I don't know exactly where I'm going to fit in. I know they develop pitchers well. After I got drafted I looked to see where their minor league organizations were and they all sound like great places to be. I'm very committed to playing baseball and getting better, but that doesn't mean I want to spend my time on a bus in Montana. Tampa, Charleston, Staten Island, they all sound like great places to be.

PinstripesPlus: Talk about your stuff if you wouldn't mind. What type of pitches do you throw and at what speeds?

Suiter: The last three years I was around 90 and as high as 94, but I usually sit in the 90-92 range with my fastball and touch 93 occasionally. Scouts have told me there is something about my delivery that gives me an advantage as well. It's like this quick glove flip, which is supposed to be distracting and apparently I release the ball a bit farther to the plate than usual, which gives a 92 MPH fastball a bit more of an edge. I also have a curve ball which is a plus pitch with 12-to-6 late breaking action. That is in the 76-78 range. Now and then I throw a splitter, but that is just a show pitch which I threw earlier in the season to get hitters thinking that I may throw that late in counts.

PinstripesPlus: What do you plan on working on this summer?

Suiter: This summer I'm going to try to work on my changeup. I throw it in the pen and I get catchers and coaches telling me a lot that if I could throw that more often it would be really effective. I'm also working on a cutter, but it really depends on how they use me. I think I'm better as a starter, but I've been effective out of the pen, and out of the pen I can get by only using my fastball and slow breaking ball, but over seven innings I'm going to need three pitches.

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

Suiter: I don't like to admit this because of all the controversy surrounding him, but I grew up watching the Giants and what Bonds can do has always amazed me. You have to respect the way he turns on a pitch. I saw him against the Dodgers back when Eric Gagne was at his prime throwing 100 MPH and I saw him rip a fastball nearly out of the park, but it was 50 feet foul. Then the next pitch was another 100 MPH fastball and Bonds turned on this one and hit it straight out of the ball park. Whatever you think of steroids or no steroids, you have to respect his feel for the strike zone and his ability to turn on a pitch.

PinstripesPlus: 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?

Suiter: Eric Bedard because I have a similar style. I love going to MLB.com and watching clips of pitchers and he has had so many high strikeout games, so he's got a lot of clips and they are unbelievable. So I would compare myself to him a little in our delivery. I mean I hope mine gets to that point where it is so smooth and the way he attacks hitters. It's that fastball and breaking ball combination, hard fastballs for strikes and slow breaking balls at the knees - I visualize the way he attacks hitters as I go out to the mound.

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

Suiter: I would have to say it was this year after not pitching the past two years at UCLA. I had a game against UC Irvine and one of my coaches for UCLA is now a third base coach at Irvine. There were no ill feelings, but having him come up after the game saying how far he thinks I've come was really a good feeling, especially since I came in and really shut them down over two days and I was coming in in tight situations. But it felt goood knowing all the hard work I put in, and the ability to not let myself get down, paid off.

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

Suiter: I don't think it will be quick. It will probably take until the middle of July. I'm still young and this is my first year in the draft. I need enough money to prove to me they want me there and they want to work with me to help improve my game. Baseball is my career and passion and I would love to sign with the Yankees, I really would.

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

Suiter: I would really love to pitch in New York. Lately I really realize I love pressure. I mean, the only pressure you feel is what you put on yourself. Pitching in Irvine is not like pitching in New York, but it is in a way. You have to simplify things. And the biggest thing you have to do is to breath. The first time you go out there the worst thing that can happen to you is that you have a bad start, but that happens to lots of people who have pitched in the majors for 15 years. The largest crowd I ever pitched in front of was 7,000 fans at Madison Wisconsin and I threw well.

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Pinstripes Plus Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\nPinstripesPlus.com: Tell us what is going through your mind right now after being selected by a team like the Yankees.
\r\n
\r\nAndy Suiter: It's pretty amazing. At first I didn't see my name on the draft list, but I was on the phone with my brother and he told me I just got drafted by the Yankees. That moment was pretty surreal, I mean I still can't believe it. It's true what people say, the Yankees are the most well known sports team in the world and it is pretty exciting. I still haven't come down, I'm pretty pumped.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: Were you surprised it was the Yankees that selected you? Had you and the Yankees talked much before the draft?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: I talked to the main area scout about two weeks ago and he said the Yankees were really interested in me. He asked me what I would sign for and he didn't really know if they would accept the amount I asked for. So I didn't really know if they were going to draft me or not.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: Do you have any idea what the Yankees' organization or farm system is like?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: I don't know exactly where I'm going to fit in. I know they develop pitchers well. After I got drafted I looked to see where their minor league organizations were and they all sound like great places to be. I'm very committed to playing baseball and getting better, but that doesn't mean I want to spend my time on a bus in Montana. Tampa, Charleston, Staten Island, they all sound like great places to be.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: Talk about your stuff if you wouldn't mind. What type of pitches do you throw and at what speeds?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: The last three years I was around 90 and as high as 94, but I usually sit in the 90-92 range with my fastball and touch 93 occasionally. Scouts have told me there is something about my delivery that gives me an advantage as well. It's like this quick glove flip, which is supposed to be distracting and apparently I release the ball a bit farther to the plate than usual, which gives a 92 MPH fastball a bit more of an edge. I also have a curve ball which is a plus pitch with 12-to-6 late breaking action. That is in the 76-78 range. Now and then I throw a splitter, but that is just a show pitch which I threw earlier in the season to get hitters thinking that I may throw that late in counts.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: What do you plan on working on this summer?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: This summer I'm going to try to work on my changeup. I throw it in the pen and I get catchers and coaches telling me a lot that if I could throw that more often it would be really effective. I'm also working on a cutter, but it really depends on how they use me. I think I'm better as a starter, but I've been effective out of the pen, and out of the pen I can get by only using my fastball and slow breaking ball, but over seven innings I'm going to need three pitches.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: Did you have a favorite team growing up or a favorite player?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: I don't like to admit this because of all the controversy surrounding him, but I grew up watching the Giants and what Bonds can do has always amazed me. You have to respect the way he turns on a pitch. I saw him against the Dodgers back when Eric Gagne was at his prime throwing 100 MPH and I saw him rip a fastball nearly out of the park, but it was 50 feet foul. Then the next pitch was another 100 MPH fastball and Bonds turned on this one and hit it straight out of the ball park. Whatever you think of steroids or no steroids, you have to respect his feel for the strike zone and his ability to turn on a pitch.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: 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\nSuiter: Eric Bedard because I have a similar style. I love going to MLB.com and watching clips of pitchers and he has had so many high strikeout games, so he's got a lot of clips and they are unbelievable. So I would compare myself to him a little in our delivery. I mean I hope mine gets to that point where it is so smooth and the way he attacks hitters. It's that fastball and breaking ball combination, hard fastballs for strikes and slow breaking balls at the knees - I visualize the way he attacks hitters as I go out to the mound.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: What would you say is your best moment in baseball and why?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: I would have to say it was this year after not pitching the past two years at UCLA. I had a game against UC Irvine and one of my coaches for UCLA is now a third base coach at Irvine. There were no ill feelings, but having him come up after the game saying how far he thinks I've come was really a good feeling, especially since I came in and really shut them down over two days and I was coming in in tight situations. But it felt goood knowing all the hard work I put in, and the ability to not let myself get down, paid off.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: Are you looking to sign quickly and get your professional career started right away?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: I don't think it will be quick. It will probably take until the middle of July. I'm still young and this is my first year in the draft. I need enough money to prove to me they want me there and they want to work with me to help improve my game. Baseball is my career and passion and I would love to sign with the Yankees, I really would.
\r\n
\r\nPinstripesPlus: Do you think the pressures of pitching in New York might be a problem?
\r\n
\r\nSuiter: I would really love to pitch in New York. Lately I really realize I love pressure. I mean, the only pressure you feel is what you put on yourself. Pitching in Irvine is not like pitching in New York, but it is in a way. You have to simplify things. And the biggest thing you have to do is to breath. The first time you go out there the worst thing that can happen to you is that you have a bad start, but that happens to lots of people who have pitched in the majors for 15 years. The largest crowd I ever pitched in front of was 7,000 fans at Madison Wisconsin and I threw well.
\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 4 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

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