Michael Schwimer was kind enough to give me a few minutes of his time prior to the Lehigh Valley game on Sunday evening, one day after he pitched 2.2 scoreless against Norfolk, extending his scoreless to streak to six outings since his promotion from AA Reading. Here is what he had to say about a number of issues…
On his most recent outing..” I felt good…pitches were good, the fastball had good late life, the slider was biting pretty good, my change I could throw whenever I wanted to, late in counts and had a good tail. Important for me on the change up is the location rather than the movement…I throw a four seam change so it comes out like a four seam fastball…I go for location and I go for speed differentiation.”
On the difference between AA and AAA, “I have been to four road stadiums, and it is very different, they treat you differently. Its more high-class, I think would be an appropriate term for that (off the baseball field), on the baseball field the game is cleaner. Things that happen should happen as opposed to coming up in Short season and High A and AA, there are things that happen where you just scratch your head, where you see something and its like wow, as opposed to here where it is pretty clean cut baseball.”
On the atmosphere in College Baseball vs. Minor League Baseball..”I can tell you this, I got a one run lead in the 9th inning and I am at FLorida State, it is the hardest, that level of competition, on the road with that level of competition, with the metal bat…it is harder than anything that I have been through…you can’t really compare it to a level of the minors, but it is a very different game. It is incredibly different pitching. You get four inches off the corner all the time in college, but you are facing metal bats. You get no jam shots, there is a lot of give and take and you don’t go inside as much, you don’t use your change up as much. It takes a little while to figure it all out.”
On his mentality on the mound: “The bigger the pressure situation, the harder it is, the better I am. Its how I have always been. Stuff wise, it’s always better for me to pitch in a one run game then it is a 10-1 game.”
On HGH testing..”…I think the HGH testing is great, It should happen across the board, ….the only information we have gotten on the HGH testing is from ESPN.com so you know as much as me, they havent told us one thing about it. The only thing I know is that they are going to come in and blood test in the non throwing arm after games. Thats all I know, very little information…”
On staying in school “I consider myself a pretty logical person, I weighed the pros and cons…both my parents were involved with the decision, ultimately it was my decision and they were going to be happy with whatever I decided. I was able to get my degree, play on a great team, but the biggest factor…if we had gone to Omaha that year, I wouldn’t have known what to do….if I was playing Short Season Ball and we were playing in Omaha(College World Series), talk to Stutes about the greatest baseball experience he had and he would say Omaha. I knew I would not regret anything if I went back to school for one more year and that is what I wanted to be sure of.”
As I expected “Schwim” came across in person just as he does when he writes. Very intelligent, down to earth and logical. In a situation where he is being pulled in many different directions, very gracious with his time as well.