Pirates Prospect Interview: Nick Kingham
PD – You were drafted in 2010 in the fourth round by the Pirates you had committed to go to Oregon, talk about your decision to sign with Pittsburgh? NK – Pro ball has been a dream since I was watching it on TV growing up, it was a good situation to be in to sign and start my pro career or go to Oregon. But it was what I wanted to do since I was little, so I figured I might not ever get the shot again, anything can happen. So I decided to take it. GVB – What was the biggest transition for you in pro ball? NK – The biggest transition from high school to pro baseball has to be the fact that everyone in the line-up, 1-9, can hurt you so there are no easy outs. The best part about playing pro baseball is everyone behind you playing defense was one of the best players from their area or college and so they make those tough plays that might sneak thru in high school. GVB – You have endured some bumps in the road, has battling through that helped you as a pitcher? NK – Over the past few seasons I have experienced a lot. I started out with a lot of success and I was very consistent with that. But my second season I struggled a bit early but my biggest accomplishment was to be able to bounce back and eventually be able to learn from my mistake and know how to minimize the damage at times in an inning. I've grown up a lot and have a better understanding of what to do and what not to do and that is credited to my struggles though my minor league career so far. GVB – The progress has been steady through the system, you start this year in Bradenton and then move up to Altoona. How do you feel about your development? NK – I feel like everything thing about me pitching from mentality to my stuff has just steadily improved over the past year. Pro ball has the best coaching, the Pirates organization really cares about the players themselves. I'm just trying to get better everyday. GVB – The Pirates stress fastball command in the minor leagues, was that a priority with you? NK – You can't pitch unless you have fastball command and can put the fastball where you want. At the lower levels you throw the fastball until you get that down. First you start down in the zone and then you start moving it in and out off the plate and then you start working on your change up . They really preach fastball command and mixing speeds. GVB – How do you feel about your stuff right now and your arsenal of pitches? NK – I have a fastball, and curveball, and a change-up that I throw. My favorite pitch to throw is the change-up! It is the hardest pitch to hit I believe, since it looks very similar to a fastball. It's definitely my go-to pitch to throw. GVB – What are you really working on as the season progresses? NK – I want to be as consistent as I can, just try and go out there and do the same thing every week. Don't try to do too much and know my limits.