Interview: Matthew Bashore

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With a compensation pick sandwiched between the first and second rounds, the Minnesota Twins used the 46th overall pick in the June draft to select left-handed pitcher Matthew Bashore from the University of Indiana.
Bashore was a two-time All-Big Ten selection, once on the first team and once on the second. He finished one strikeout shy of the school record with 108 strikeouts last season, and he signed quickly after being selected and has already made his professional debut with the Elizabethton Twins.
Matt took some time to step away from the field and answer some questions.
Voice From Twins Territory:Growing up, what was your favorite baseball team, and who were some of your favorite players?

Matthew Bashore:Growing up in Ohio my favorite team was the Indians and my favorite players were Jim Thome, Omar Vizquel, Kenny Lofton, and Sandy Alomar Jr.


VFTT:What current player would you say you’re most like and why?

MB:A current player that I am most like would be Andy Petite. I think he was my dad’s favorite pitcher and my dad taught me to pitch after him.


VFTT:What was the college experience like, and what does it mean to you to make two All Big Ten teams?

MB:The college experience was great for me because it taught me so many things. It helped me grow up and learn to be on my own.


VFTT:Had you talked with scouts, and were you expecting to be selected when you were?

MB:Yeah, I had talked to scouts and I went around where they seemed to say I would.


VFTT:Where were you when you were drafted by the Minnesota Twins, how did you find out, and what was the feeling like?

MB:When I got drafted I waswatchingit on the computer at my parents house with my family and girlfriend.It was funny because some teams were outspoken about what they thought of me and showed interest. The Twins were very quite about it with me.So when it was their turn to pick and they selected me, I was already looking ahead to see who I thought maybe would pick me.


VFTT:What have been your initial impressions of professional ball since you made your debut?

MB:Myinitialimpressions of pro ball are great, I enjoy the freedoms that come with pro ball compared to college ball. It’s hard to complain or have a bad impression when your getting paid to play baseball.


VFTT:What do you feel is your biggest strength, and one thing you’re looking to most improve upon?

MB:I feel that my biggest strength is my mental strength. I am always composed and can always relax myself. I feel that I can push myself harder and further than others. The biggest thing that I look to improve on would be getting a good change-up. When I get a grasp for that pitch I will become a more complete pitcher.


VFTT:Through little league, high school, college, and even the first games with Elizabethton, what is your greatest baseball moment?

MB:Throughout my baseball career my favorite baseball moment would be in legion ball when I was in high school. I had pitched a good ten inning game and I was being DH’d for until the bottom of the tenth. We were down by two and the coach let me hit for myself with the bases loaded. I hit a ball which I thought was gone so I was jogging a little to first. It hit the wall so I started running hard. I tried to stretch it into a triple and the ball kicked away into the dugout. So I then got home for what I call a walk off grand slam.

VFTT: Who is one person or a few people who helped you along the path to get into professional baseball?

MB:The one person who has helped me the most would be my father. He has put so much time and energy into helping me with the game and I wouldn’t be the player or person I am without him.

VFTT: What do you think it would be like to make a major league debut with the Twins?

MB:To make a major league start with the Twins would be an amazing feeling. I have a lot of hard work to get there but that thought helps me push myself each and everyday.

Quick Questions:
Favorite baseball movie? Major League
Superstitious?Yes, I amsuperstitiousbut only on the days I pitch. I have a pair of sliders that I only wear on the days I pitch and whatever I do inbetween innings I’ll do exactly again if I have a good inning. I’ll sit in the same spot if I have a good inning, but if I don’t, I’ll sit somewhere else.
Do you wear a particular number?Any number the Twins give me I’ll wear, I just want one. But if I had a choice my favorite number is 22.
I’d like to thank Matt for taking some time to answer these questions and wish him the best for the remainder of the season at Elizabethton.

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