INTERVIEW: Sox’s No. 1 pick: Casey Kelly
Casey Kelly, drafted in June, is already ranked the Sox’s fifth-best prospect. He is a two-way player, preferring to play shortstop while the Red Sox see his future on the mound. He has played shortstop this year and will pitch later this year and start next year as a pitcher until he has reached his innings limit; he will then shift to shortstop. At least that is the plan for the 18-year old, who hit .173/.229/.255 in 98 at-bats for the GCL Red Sox and is at .344/.344/.563 for Single-A Lowell…
Were you expecting to be drafted by the Red Sox or did it come as a surprise to you? What other teams were interested in you?
Not really, I thought the Tigers or Yankees were going to take me before the Red Sox had a chance.. the Nationals and Marlins were also interested in me.
Have you bought anything for yourself since you signed? A treat with the signing bonus?
I have bought some new clothes and shoes but thatch it — I bought my dad a new F-150 FX2 sport truck. I want to take care of my family before me cause I’m where I am ’cause of them.
How has being the son of a former major leaguer impacted your development?
I owe all my success to him; he has taught me everything from playing to how to handle my self and being around the clubhouse since I could walk, I watched how guys went about their business and what separated those guys from other guys.
You’re playing shortstop for the rest of this year but the Red Sox are more interested in having you pitch. Why do you prefer playing shortstop more?
I love playing shortstop and hitting. I prefer playing shortstop and playing everyday.
How did you and the Red Sox handle the shortstop/pitching questions in negotiations?
I expressed my love for shortstop and that I wanted to try it out. They expressed what they thought of me as a fielder and as a pitcher. We wetn back and fourth with ideas and things to work out.
You recently were promoted to Lowell after playing for the GCL Red Sox. How have you adjusted to professional life so far?
I think I have adjusted very well. This is what my whole life has been in the summer, traveling with my dad, so I don’t know anything else.
Please give us your scouting report both as a shortstop and as a pitcher.
I have very good hands and feet, a very good arm… I have very good range for being a bigger shortstop. Pitching, I have control of all three pitches [Evan: fastball, hard curve, changeup]. I have a pretty good fastball that moves a lot and a curve that’s pretty good also.
You were going to head to Tennessee to be quarterback. Do you prefer playing football or is baseball your number one passion and the reason you signed a contract?
I loved playing football games. Didn’t like the practice, ha ha… but baseball was my first love and something I always wanted to do with my career. And I def[initely] knew baseball was the way I was going to go.
What’s one player you’ve played with so far in your pro career that you’re impressed with? Why?
What are your short-term goals right now?
My short term goals are to just get better each day and learn as much as I can from some of the other guys.
Thanks to Casey for answering the questions!
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