Friday, May 24, 2019

Interview Excerpts: Phillies RHP prospect Dom Pipkin

Earlier this week I published a feature on Class A Lakewood pitcher Dominic Pipkin. In the piece, which can be read by clicking here, the 19-year-old's success and outstanding skill set are discussed with quotes from the player himself along with his pitching coach.

Through nine appearances (four starts) for the BlueClaws, Pipkin sports a 2-1 record with a 3.73 ERA, a .261 batting average against and a 6.9 K/9 mark.

Below, I have included quotes from the talented right-handed California native talking about his pitch repertoire, his family which Phillies pitcher he draws comparisons to and much much.

-What sorts of feedback are you getting from the coaching staff of late?

They give all kinds of feedback. They give you pretty much every measurement your ball has, whether it’s vertical, horizontal. They have this ZXY-whatever. They tell you how hard you threw it. They tell you if it was effective. Spin efficiency. Spin rate. They give you every bit of information you could possibly ask for.

-Is it more complex than it needs to be?

They don’t make it too complicated. They know all the stuff, but they won’t overload your brain and tell you this, that and the other, you need to have this be there, and that be here. They just keep it real simply for you. They pretty much just focus on maybe spin rate, depending on if your delivery is good.

-What is your pitch repertoire right now?

I have four-seam, two-seam, change up, slider, curve ball. But, the slider’s more of a cutters, and the curve ball’s more of a slider. So, I just really gotta work on getting the 12-6 with the curve and regular slider (movement) with the slider right now.

-How does it make you feel when people are excited by your velocity?

I mean, I’m excited too. I’m throwing 96, 97, 98 or whatever I’m throwing and you look up at the scoreboard and you see it and you’re like, “Wow, I just did that!” It pumps you up a little bit. It’s just how it is. You see a big number and you get excited.

-As a guy that throws hard, do you ever give much thought to any sort of injury risk associated with the higher velocity?

Throwing hard always increases the risk of injury, but throwing a baseball in general is a risk of injury. It’s not a natural movement for the arm. You could throw 75 miles an hour and one wrong throw and your arm broke or your ligament tore or your rotator cuff tore or your labrum tore. I mean, throwing hard does increase the risk, sure. But I think if you take care of your arm, it’ll just last longer.

-Who are some of the guys in the organization that you bond most closely with?

I mean the group of friends that I made initially was Jimmy Smith, Logan Simmons, Luke Miller, Jaylen Smith, Corbin Williams, the list can go on and on. I have a lot more friends now than when I first got her, but it’s just like the first initial group that I meshed with right out of the gate.

-What has it been like when you've gotten exposure to big league rehabbers or guys getting work in? Is it a big difference?

Oh yeah, when any big leaguer comes down to rehab or a big leaguer is getting extra innings in spring training the crowd is noticeably bigger. Like, for a regular minor league spring training game like the ones I pitched in there’s nobody there, but Bryce Harper comes down for a live at bat or live batting practice (in spring training), there’s a hundred people there. It goes from like 10 to 100. It’s a noticeable difference.

-Is it worth paying extra attention to those guys? Are you able to pick up a lot?

It’s definitely worth it. It always pays off to pay attention because maybe you’ll pick up something off of that guy or that at bat that you can apply to someone else or something similar at least.

-You told me before that you get some comparisons to a particular Phillies pitcher from the coaches...

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