Tyler Massey is a minor league outfielder for the Colorado Rockies, and Everything MLB/MLB News blog was lucky enough to interview the young prospect Wednesday afternoon. Here is what was said:
Everything MLB: When did you start playing baseball?
Tyler Massey: I started playing every summer at the age of 4 and began to play competitively at age 11 ( like 70 games a summer).
EMLB: When did you realize that you had the chance to go pro?
TM: In my junior year of high school when I began having some success and getting invited to showcases and things I realized playing pro ball could be a possibility.
EMLB: How were you introduced to baseball?
TM: My dad coached all three high school sports . Baseball, football and basketball so I was introduced by growing up as a gym rat, always around the field or weight room or gym.
EMLB: Did you play any other sports in high school?
TM: [I] played football all the way through high school.
EMLB: What position did you play?
TM: Quarterback and strong safety.
EMLB: Which sport did you enjoy more?
TM: Baseball was def my first love.
EMLB: You were drafted in the 14th round of the 2008 First Year Player Draft, do you still remember that day?
TM: Yea, I’ll never forget it. My dad called me and told me the Rockies drafted me. I was still actually in Denver because I was in town for the pre-draft workout. I didn’t have an agent or anything, my parents help me with everything.
EMLB: What were you thinking after your dad called you with the news?
TM: Excitement, pure excitement. Haha.
EMLB: Do you remember the first thing you did after getting the call?
TM: I talked to my scout, then talked to some friends and things. Then I went fly fishing that day in Colorado haha.
EMLB: That year you played in 19 games for the Casper Ghosts (now named the Grand Junction Rockies), what do you remember from your first season?
TM: It was fun . Long bus rides in the pioneer league. I played 19 games and tore my ACL so that was disappointing, but looking back it taughtme a lot about hard work; rehabbing my knee that offseason
EMLB: After your injury, did you ever think about quitting baseball?
TM: No I was 19 just signed. That never even crossed my mind.
EMLB: Have you ever thought about quitting baseball in your career?
TM: No. I’ve had a goal and a dream since I was 4, that word (quit) isn’t in my vocabulary. I want to play until they take the uniform from me.
EMLB: You’ve been in the minors for 6 years so far, which season has been your favorite so far and why?
TM: Probably 2012 in Asheville, not only did I have my most success but also played on a championship team in the SAL league. Great experience beinga champion.
EMLB: What factors led to your own personal success and your team’s success in the 2012 season?
TM: We as a team really complemented each other’s skills and played for each other zero selfishness. I really became a more patientand professional hitter.
EMLB: In 2013, you played for the Modesto Nuts, how would you say that your season went?
TM:[It] went well. I got [a] good opportunity to play some center field and show some versatility.
EMLB: And offensively?
TM: [I] Continued to progress and work on some things. I feel I finished the season very strong at the plate.
EMLB: This off-season you played in the Australian Baseball League with the Melbourne Aces, what was that experience like?
TM: Great experience getting to see a different country and continue getting work and at-bats during in game action. Made for a great offseason program.
EMLB: You went to Melbourne with fellow Rockies minor-leaguer Ryan Casteel. How much did you get to know him in your time overseas?
TM: We have played together the last three years we have been great friends over the last seasons and spent a lot of good time together. [He is a] good friend and good teammate.
EMLB: In an http://MLB.com article, it said that you and Casteel grew up only 30 miles apart, but had never crossed paths until a couple of years ago. Is that true?
TM: Yea I heard about him in the newspaper and stuff but never played with him until [the] Northwest League in 2011.
EMLB: What do you think of when I say the name Joe Sclafani?
TM: Played against him this past year in the cal league in Lancaster and in Adelaide in the ABL. Most recently however the ball he hit to right center…
EMLB: I was going to ask you about the play. What do you remember?
TM: Just remember taking off after it and having a good beat on it. Knew I could get to it but knew I would have to make a little contact with the wall. I had no idea the wall would give out like it did.
EMLB: It didn’t look like it was padded very well, haha. Did the game go on afterwards?
TM: Yea we had about a 10 minute break to mend the wall back.
EMLB: What are your goals for the 2014 season?
TM: To improve my game at the plate and continue chasing the dream of becoming a big leaguer.
EMLB: What is the worst part of the minors? Any stories?
TM: Ha I guess we’ve had some bus breakdowns that have made for long trips. Middle of the nights sitting on the side of the road… But those bad times usually make for the funniest stories later on.
EMLB: I’ll bet. What do you usually do during the busrides?
TM: Usually get some good sleep. I’ve gotten better at sleeping on the bus if I’m not playing spades
EMLB: Do you have any pregame routines?
TM: I always tape my wrists the same way and have to have two pieces of Wrigley spearmint gum before I go out to stretch.
EMLB: Interesting. Which pitcher that you have hit against has the most dominant stuff?
TM: I faced Kimbrel when he was coming up [and] then this past summer Archie Bradley had some pretty good stuff! [I’m] excited to see how he does.
EMLB: Have you been able to talk with any of the current Rockies players, like Tulo, Cargo, or anyone else?
TM: No, I haven’t.
EMLB: As you continue to progress through the Rockies system, is there one player you most like to meet?
TM: I’d really like to meet [Derek] Jeter. I like the way he goes about things and plays the game.
EMLB: What message would you give to kids who have the dream of playing professionally?
TM: If you love it, keep working hard and believe you can do it.
EMLB: And lastly, your pick for the Superbowl is?
TM: Russell Wilson former teammate. Go Hawks!!
EMLB: Thank you for your time.
Tyler will also be sending an autographed item, it is still to be determined, to a follower of the blog. Once we receive 75 followers, we will raffle it off to the blog followers. Remember, you can follow the blog by email by signing up on the right side of the blog.