Do you keep in touch with any of the guys in Bowie?
I keep in touch with Pedro Florimon, Eddie Gamboa. At spring training I talked to a few of the guys, too. Zach Britton, he's having a good year.
You knew that you were left unprotected going into the Rule 5 draft, did you think you would be selected?
I knew I had had a good year. I didn't know what to expect. I just left it up in the air. I just did what I could do on the field, I did my part and just tried to get picked up.
Do you have any hard feelings about the way you left the Orioles?
No hard feelings at all. It worked out for me, I'm staying at home. I have no hard feelings toward the Orioles.
If you had stayed in the O's system, do you think you would be in the big leagues right now?
I think I would have. Considering the fact that [Orioles Manager Buck] Showalter is giving a lot of chances to a lot of guys in the minor leagues. A lot of guys have come up for at least a game.
How was Mets Spring Training different from the Orioles? The biggest thing was that the media is a lot different. There is a lot more media here in New York than there is anywhere else, just because it is a lot bigger city.
A lot of people struggle with playing in New York, how have you handled it?
I think I've handled it very well. I'm from here, I know what to expect, I know how to get around here so that doesn't phase me. It's just like playing high school ball again for me.
Did you feel any additional pressure in spring training this season?
I felt more pressure in the offseason and during the season, because I wanted to come prepared. I didn't want to get caught off-guard. I wanted to be ready for everything that was going to get thrown at me. That was part of the reason why I thought I had a little pressure on myself in the offseason. Once it came to game time, it was just another game. It's just going out there and competing against someone else. That's just something I love doing, and have done for a while. It's one of the reasons why I play this sport, for the competitiveness.
When did you find out that you were going to the Mets?
I found out when I was playing winter ball this offseason in the Dominican Republic. I got a call from my agent around the tenth of December or something like that, and I told him I wasn't doing much [in winter ball] and I need to get ready so I can go home and start getting ready for spring training. That's what I did and it worked.
When did you find out that you were going to make the Mets 25-man roster?
The very, very, very last day. I don't know if I was one of the last options or what. It wasn't until the last day when I found out I was on the roster and what would be coming out of the bullpen. The next pressure I had was showing myself I could stay up here and that it was not a mistake. It worked out.
You logged 18.2 innings before you allowed your first earned run, what made you so successful in your first Major League games?
I think it was just my aggressiveness, just coming out there and showing guys that I was going to get ahead and then put them away. Pound the zone with my fastball, keep the ball down and get a lot of ground balls. It works for me.
Do you prefer middle or late relief?
I prefer middle or more toward the end of the bullpen. Ideally I want to be a closer or a setup man. But thy have men in all of those categories, so I will play whatever is put before me.
Do you factor into the Mets closer plans for next year?
I don't know. There's been talk about it, but I honestly don't know. It's just a matter of what they want to do there.
Do you feel like there is as much team bonding without the long bus trips of the minors?
The bus trips were not that bad. I don't think the travel has that big of an effect, and the things you do on the bus you can also do on a plane. You have a lot more security when you are flying on a plane, just because they have to search you and all that stuff.
Which Mets pitchers have helped you develop this year?
I have had a couple of guys, between Jason Isringhausen who is pretty much my mentor and from spring training it was Francisco Rodriguez. Both of them guys have been through it all, they know what it's like to win in the playoffs. They know what it's like to be in situations where I haven't been. Especially at the Major League level. Those are the guys that are the guys to ask. They are the guys that you want to learn from.
Do you have a message for Bowie fans?
I just want to thank them for their support, please keep supporting the Bowie Baysox. You guys are great, you do a lot for the players. The Booster Club is great, you guys are awesome. I don't know if there is any booster club out there that does a job like they do. I appreciate all that they have done for the players.
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