9 innings with Royals LHP prospect Buddy Baumann
Buddy…thanks for taking the time to sit down with Royalsprospects.com
1st inning- Where did the name Buddy come from and does anyone still call you George?
Ok, the name buddy actually came to stick because of baseball. When I was really young my parents would call be bud or buddy every now and then as people do. My family moved around a lot when I was a kid. When I was seven, we moved to Kentucky from Chicago, and in my first baseball meeting the coach told us we could put any name on the back of our jersey. I asked my parents if I could use buddy as a nickname, they said yes and since I was new, that’s what everyone saw and that’s what they called me.
2nd inning- How did you choose Missouri State and what do you miss most about your experience in Springfield?
Choosing Missouri state wasn’t the hardest decision. I wanted to go to a place where I felt wanted, and the pitching coach, Paul Evans, always kept in contact throughout the process, while the other schools were more interested in the “projectable” players. When I met with the coaches, I felt comfortable, and I loved the campus and facilities. Plus, mo state is known for producing quality pitchers.
What I miss most about Missouri state is definitely my teammates. We all grew so close throughout my three years. When I got to pro ball, all the funny inside jokes would make no sense, so it felt like I lost a part of me. I also missed the emphasis on winning. That’s the only thing that mattered and I love winning.
I’m sure you don’t get this much but I really miss class. I loved the atmosphere around campus and I loved listening to the professors. I didn’t mind the girls either.
3rd inning- You made the all star team in the Cape pitching for Brewster. Can you tell me a little about that summer baseball experience?
The cape was a great thing to be a part of. God has blessed me with some great experiences through this game. There is just so much history when it comes to the cape; there was an amount of pride that came with putting on that jersey. The cool thing with being in such a premier league was the fact that I got to meet a number of guys who i’ll be playing with or against in pro ball. I had a great time. It was a relaxed atmosphere because it was more of a talent show for most of the guys.
Being able to make the all star team was pretty cool. Most of the guys there were first or second rounders so I was fortunate to be in such good company.
4th inning- Were the Royals the team you expected to draft you or were you getting some serious radar from other clubs?
I met with the royals scout one time in the early spring of 09. I forgot I even met with them because most of the other teams met with us then as well. There were a few teams that really liked me. I know the reds, orioles, cardinals, angels and a few others were doing most of the talking, so when the royals picked me, it came as a shock. I couldn’t be more happy though.
5th inning- Give me a scouting report on yourself…pitches, velocity, make up
I am definitely not the typical professional pitcher since I stand 5’10″ but that helps with the way I throw. I’m a low 3 1/4 slot with a quick arm(at least that’s what I hear). I have long arms and I hide the ball well which helps with deception. I throw three pitches. I have a Fastball, change up and slider. My Fastball will range from 88 to 95(on a good day). My change is high 70s with drop and my slider is low 80s. My fastball is my bread and butter. It jumps on people and because my height and slot I can get a lot of swings up in the zone, and I’m able to pitch inside effectively. I live for the competition. I’m fiery at times but I’ve learned how to channel it and use it to my advantage.
6th inning- I have heard great things about Salvador Perez as a receiver…how important is your relationship with your catcher and what do you like about throwing to Perez?
Salvador Perez is the best catcher I’ve ever thrown to. He’s huge but he gives a good low target, and he has such soft, sure hands on every pitch. He will have a long career in the bigs. Those are the things you see that makes him good, but what sets him apart is everything you don’t see. He is one of the best teammates and he is selfless behind the plate. He always has a smile on his face and he is always encouraging to his pitchers, even when they don’t have their stuff, and nothing makes a catcher more angry than a pitcher with no control.
The pitcher catcher relationship is key to be successful. When we are on the same page, its almost not fair for the other team because the pitcher can get into a rhythm and when that happens, watching that pitcher is like watching an artist paint.
7th inning- You have tremendous control..but what do you rely on if you know you do not have something working in the bullpen or once a game starts?
More times than not, I don’t have my best stuff in the bullpen, so I’ve learned to erase my warm-ups and really zone in when I get on the mound. Like I said before, I live to compete, so when I don’t have my stuff on a certain day, I know that its time to go. Nothing is easy that day but I love it. I take my mind off of myself and I pitch to keep my team in the game. God has blessed me with a live fastball so when need a big punchout, I go to my fastball and that hitter doesn’t stand a chance.
8th inning- What are you going to be doing this off season?
This off season is going to be an exciting one. Of course I’m going to be working hard in my training and ill be doing that at Missouri state. The coaches are awesome.with letting former players work out at their complex.
God has put on my heart to help people and that’s my ultimate goal for my life so I’m going to volunteer at the boys and girls town, and just hang out with kids who have had a rough start at life. I also volunteer at the homeless shelter and serve there as much as I can throughout the week. Being able to do this kind of stuff is humbling and rewarding. This game can make you feel like you are more important than others and people put themselves up on a pedestal but we are all children of God. I’m also trying to go abroad to do some mission work and see how life is outside of the US. I’m excited to see what God is going to show me and I hope I can help some people along the way.
9th inning- If you were coaching a group of 14 year old pitchers what advice would you have for them?
It’s simple really. I would tell them, if you want to have a future in baseball then you have to work hard. When you think you are working hard enough, you need to work harder. Don’t let anyone out work you. If you do there are thousands if other high schoolers who are as well. You must have confidence and Confidence comes when you know that no one will ever out work you.
extra innings- If you could go to the ultimate music concert and could hear any 3 bands (singers) of all time who would you be watching in that concert and if you could bring 3 people with you (one friend, one teammate in the Royals system and one celebrity) who would that be?
Only three bands? That’s tough. i’ll have to go with three different eras. I would love to see bob Dylan. I absolutely love Dylan. I heard coldplay is unbelievable in concert, so that definitely would be one. The third is between Pearl Jam and Oasis. I love the 90s but its a toss up between those two. I’m a bigger fan of oasis but pearl jam is so talented.
I would take my teammate from college, Sean toler. We jam all the.time together. He crushes the guitar and I destroy the harmonica. I would take brendan lafferty from the royals organization. We’ve been learning to play the guitar together this year. the celebrity would be Zoey Dechanel. She’s the actress from yes man and elf. She appreciates music and she is gorgeous. If anyone doesn’t pick a beautiful woman they are crazy.
thank you so much Buddy and best of luck going forward
Hope that works. Thanks for the interview.
* I am sure all of us (guys) can relate to this but Buddy did want us to know that he does already have a beautiful girlfriend….
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