Mike Reynolds: It was a dream come true to be honest. It is one thing I have been looking forward to my whole life and then when you see your name get called it is just a huge weight lifted off my back. It is a dream come true and I am glad that I got this opportunity.
ITO: Where were you when you found out you were drafted?
Reynolds: I was in Pennsylvania visiting my grandparents. They did not have internet so I was actually over my dad’s friends house.
ITO: Talk about your game a little bit. What type of player are you and how do you see yourself fitting in with the Orioles?
Reynolds: I guess you could describe me as a scrappy type player. I am going to run hard anywhere between the lines. You are not going to catch me all out. That is kind of my game. I have to play my hardest at all times. I am a fast guy. I don’t typically put up the power numbers but I can hit with more power than most people my size.
ITO: How do you see yourself fitting in with the Orioles?
Reynolds: Honestly I see myself fitting in there perfectly. With Brian Roberts at second base, he is kinda my size. It is good to know that they have a knack for a guy that is small and they can use him and utilize him. It is comforting that they can bring in a guy that size and play in the Major Leagues.
ITO: What are your strengths and your weaknesses?
Reynolds: I bring a lot of energy to the field. I am a fun player to play with. That energy and enthusiastic play plays to everyone else advantage because it makes them want to play as hard as me, so I guess my energy about the game is a big strength in itself. My weaknesses are probably left handed hitting. I just started batting lefty last summer so I am still working on it. I personally see that as going to be a great advantage to my game. It will get me to first base faster. Right now it is my weakness but it is going to play out to be a big strength in the future.
ITO: You said “get to first base quicker”, are you a speed guy?
Reynolds: Yes, definitely. That is pretty much the main tool that they drafted me on. Home to first from the left side is 3.8-3.9. I have been clocked at 3.7. My average from the right side is 4.1-4.2. I run a 60 in 6.5. You have to have an above average tool to play and that is my above average tool.
ITO: Obviously at 5’9 and 170 pounds, that type of player typically does not pass the eyeball test for scouts. What is it about you that peaked scouts interest?
Reynolds: They seem me as that fast guy in the big leagues. That leadoff hitter that gets on and steals bases. Not a big power hitter guy but gets on base. I personally do not think that I have peaked. I feel like I have never come across a guy that is better than me. I still haven’t. Even after all of the workouts I have gone to. People see that I am 5’9 170 and think I have gotten the most out of my body but I disagree. I think I can get faster and stronger.
ITO: How about your defensive game?
Reynolds: I think my defensive game is a little underrated for me. I get to a ton of balls that other players dont. The only problem is my throwing accuracy. I have great arm strength but sometimes I get in my head too much. Especially the plays right to me and I have alot of time to think, that is when some of my throws go in the dirt. I mkae the great plays though, I just need to work on the routine plays a little bit.
ITO: Who would you compare your game to at the Major League level so the Orioles' fans have an idea of what your game is like?
Reynolds: My idol growing up is Derek Jeter. Even though I am not tall like a 6’3 shortstop, I always played like I was tall. When I am out there I pretend I am the tallest guy. Now that I have grown to recongnize that I am more of a Jose’ Reyes type player. A switch hitter, fast guy with tools and quickness.
ITO: Were you expecting to be drafted by the Orioles or were you surprised they selected you?
Reynolds: The Orioles were definltey one of the top teams that I was expecting to be drafted by. I was talking to alot of other teams but I think I had the best workout wtih the Orioles. I had a lot of workouts with other teams but I dont think they really saw the potential I have like the Orioles did. I am really glad that the Orioles drafted me because I think I can make a big jump in their farm leagues.
ITO: Was the round a surprise?
Reynolds: I was actually told that I was going to go 8th-12th round. I think the money that I was asking kind of screwed that up with other teams and I think the Orioles knew that. I think they kinda took a risk on me and took me in the later rounds. I got some calls in the earlier rounds asking for less money but I couldn’t really do that with the college that I am going to next year.
ITO: Do you see yourself staying at the same position or do you think you'll be moved to another position?
Reynolds: During workouts they had me at short and I took a couple balls at second. I plan to play as hard as I can at shortstop until they move me if they move me to second. I don’t think any position on the field will be a problem with me unless maybe first base, catcher or pitcher.
ITO: What are your immediate plans now that you have been drafted by the Orioles? Is it your intention to sign now and start your professional career immediately?
Reynolds: My whole life I have wanted to play professional baseball. It is not all about the money for me. I feel like the opportunity is far greater than the money right now. Now that I have the opportunity, I want to prove myself. I want to achieve my goal of becoming a professional baseball player. If the Orioles come like they told me that they want to come they I really want to sign and persue my dream of becoming a professional baseball player. School will always be there. I just want to start. I know that with hardwork comes success
- Reynolds has signed to play at Texas A&M *