ITW: You were one of the Orioles first round draft picks in the 1999 draft; were there any other teams interested in drafting you that year?
Keith Reed: I took batting practice in Three Rivers [Stadium] for the Pirates before the draft. Dana Brown was the scout and they talked about selecting me with their pick in the first round.
ITW: What expectations did the Orioles communicate to you after they drafted you?
Keith Reed: They didn’t really give me any specific expectations. I wanted to go out and try to improve every year and get to the big leagues in a few years. It took a while for me to develop and I didn’t develop as fast as they hoped. I finally got my chance in `05.
ITW: The Orioles left you exposed to the Rule 5 Draft in 2001. Were you hoping to get taken by another team?
Keith Reed: Anything to get to the big leagues, that’s what ran through my mind. I ended up back at AA, but I can only worry about things I can control.
ITW: How do you prepare for a game?
Keith Reed: Basically, I try to get loose, shag balls in batting practice, stretch and run a bit. If I have faced the pitcher before, I look back at what he got me out on, or, if someone else knows what he has, we talk about what he has; I ask people who know him.
ITW: What would the scouting report on you say?
Keith Reed: It would say ‘a 5 tool guy’. I have the ability and the work ethic. I have the ability to get back into affiliated ball and the ability to compete at the big league level.
ITW: In 2005, the Orioles called you up to take Sammy Sosa’s place on the roster. How did that feel?
Keith Reed: It felt pretty good. Friends told me I would be the answer to a trivia question. I would have like to stick around a while longer, though.
ITW: It seemed like you were starting to put it all together for the Orioles the last few seasons. Do you have any regrets you aren’t still with them?
Keith Reed: I had some good years the last few seasons, but I didn’t know if I was going to be an organizational guy with them or not. I wanted to test the waters to see if there were any better opportunities there for me. It didn’t seem like the Orioles were interested in having me back.
ITW: Is there any one player in the majors you have tried to model your game after?
Keith Reed: I have always like Vlad [Guerrero]; I wear #27, play right field, don’t wear batting gloves. He has power and speed as well. He is a good guy who is never in trouble. I have never met him.
ITW: Compare the major leagues, minor leagues and the independent leagues.
Keith Reed: Independent & AAA are pretty much the same. There are a lot of guys here with big league experience. I don’t have like 4 years in the big leagues so I really can’t compare them.
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