I recently had the privilege in talking with the Mets 2011 10th round draft pick, RHP Matt Budgell from Woodbridge HS in Irvine, Cal. The 18-year old Budgell is listed at 6’2, 150 lbs. He official signed on July 3 for $225,000. That was the second highest signing bonus of players drafted in the 10th round.
Budgell is currently pitching for the GCL Mets, where he has appeared in five games, one as a starting pitcher. He has pitched 10 innings, giving up 10 hits and five earned runs. He has struck out eight and walked two.
Here is my chat with Mr. Budgell:
Budgell: It hasn’t been too rough, actually. The Mets do a great job getting us ready before they throw us in the mix and quite frankly, it has been a huge improvement from High School baseball.
Diaz:Tell us what is a typical day looks like for you (at home and on the road)..
Budgell: Home: 7:45 Vans. 8:15 Early Work (Running/Bullpens) 9:15 Stretch/Throw/Defense/BP (Work on my farmer’s tan and shag balls). 12 Game (Charts or shag foul balls)
Road: 7 Vans. 7:30 Early Work. 8:15 Stretch/Throw. 8:15/10 Nap (Bus Ride). 12 Game
Diaz: Talk about what pitches you throw, and rank them according to effectiveness/confidence.
Budgell: 2-Seam FB, Curveball, Changeup.. I like to think they’re all pretty effective, especially the duece. I’ll throw any pitch anytime, anywhere.
Diaz: You signed a letter of intent to play college baseball at Cal. St. Fullerton. How difficult a decision was that to pass up on by signing with the Mets.
Budgell: Surprisingly easy, actually. I knew what I wanted to do with my career and I knew what the quickest way to achieving my goal was.
Diaz:Who were some of your favorite players/pitchers that you looked up to?
Budgell: Nomar Garciaparra, Josh Beckett, Tim Lincecum, Dustin Pedroia
Diaz: Who are some of the people (parents, coaches, instructors, etc.) that have made the most impact on you in your baseball career thus far?
Budgell: My Mom and Dad have made the biggest impact on my career without a doubt. Their support and encouragement is a vital part of me being where I am today. Others who have made tremendous impacts on my career are my girlfriend, Anneliese, who put my head on straight when I was slipping and has always supported my goals. The Brewers Elite Scout Ball Team’s coaching staff who put me on the radar in professional baseball. Last but not least, John Elliot, my club coach who showed me the tools I possessed and what I could do if I used them to their potential.
Diaz: Can you talk about your short-term and long-term goals as a member of the Mets organization?
Budgell:Short -term: get bigger and stronger, move up a level or two. Long-term: Stay healthy, stay focused, and bring a World Series Championship to New York…the good side of New York.
Diaz: Lastly, it looks like you are pretty active on twitter with fans and friends. How has the fan interaction been? I really think fans appreciate you players taking some time to interact with them.
Budgell: I love it. After all, a few months ago I was just a fan too and I always wished athletes would talk to me so I figured I would once I got the chance. Also, there’s no reason to ever not talk to good people and there’s no question the Mets fan base is the best in professional sports.
You can follow Matt on twitter @itsbudgell