I had the opportunity to interview Adam Ottavino. This past season, the former first round draft pick pitched for Memphis (AAA), where he finished the season with a 7-8 record and a 4.86 ERA in 26 games.
Daniel Solzman: Adam, thanks for joining us here at Redbird Rants. How is the offseason treating you?
Adam Ottavino: The offseason has been good so far. Getting prepared for next season and visualizing myself on that mound in Busch stadium.
Daniel Solzman: The Cardinals are coming off one of the most memorable World Series that I can recall in recent history. Did you catch Game 6 and if so, what were you thinking as you watched that game?
Adam Ottavino: Yes of course I watched the game. I felt very uncomfortable during the entire run they made. I wanted to be a part of it very badly. On one hand it was painful to watch, but on the other hand, some of my best friends where having the time of their lives, so I was happy for them. During Game six I may have aged a few years. I was especially happy that people got to see what I have already known; the baby birds are no joke!
Daniel Solzman: Growing up in Brooklyn, did you lean towards the Yankees or the Mets? Similarly, was it easy being a New Yorker in Boston when you attended Northeastern?
Adam Ottavino: I am a huge Yankee Fan. When I was growing up they went from bad to the best and it was amazing to see. I went to hundreds of games at the old Yankee Stadium and I will always cherish those memories. When I went to Northeastern, I was surrounded by Red Sox fans. It wasn’t too hard though as I developed an appreciation for their flavor over time.
Daniel Solzman: Sticking with Boston for a moment, I noticed you’re a history major. Having visited Boston, I know it’s a great place for historic sites. If you could go to any historic moment in time, sports or non-sports, what would it be and why?
Adam Ottavino: I would like to go back to when the Dodgers were in Brooklyn. I live close to where Ebbetts field was. It would have been amazing to see a game there. I would have been a Dodger fan, changing everything for me.
Daniel Solzman: It’s my understanding that along with adding you to the 40-man roster, the Cardinals are looking to convert you from a starter to a reliever. Does this change any part of your usual offseason routine?
Adam Ottavino: Yes, I have been informed that I will be coming to Spring Training as a full time reliever. It doesn’t change much because I am still working on my same weaknesses, and maintaining my strengths as a Pitcher. I am exited for the opportunity, and hopeful that it will lead me to the big leagues for many years.
Daniel Solzman: Does being a first round draft pick come with added pressure to climb the ladder quicker to reach the big show?
Adam Ottavino: I think it does. In my case, I wasn’t ever “supposed ” to be a first rounder, so when I got drafted, the dynamic changed. I wasn’t looked at like an underdog anymore, so I wanted to live up to that. In the end, its all how you approach things. I learned quickly that there comes a point where no one cares when you were signed, just how many outs you can get. It’s so long ago now that I have forgotten about it, I want to be a long time Major Leaguer.
Daniel Solzman: Thanks again for joining us and best of luck next season!
Adam Ottavino: Thanks for having me!