By Dan Connolly
The Baltimore Sun
5:42 PM PDT, September 19, 2012
Dylan Bundy just talked with the Orioles media in Seattle. Here’s what he said:
When did you get the call?
“I got it at 3:45 a.m. My roommate, Joe Oliveira, answered the phone and told me it was Brian Graham and he told me I was on a plane at 7 a.m. and I was going to pitch here in Seattle. So I said, ‘Are you messing with me? And he said, ‘No, I’m not going to mess with you at 4 in the morning.’ So next thing I know I’m at the airport and on my way to Seattle.”
Is this a surreal moment for you?
“It didn’t get that way until I saw the archway at Safeco Field in the cab today. That’s really went it hit me I guess.”
What are your thoughts on taking the big league mound for the first time?
“Just slow the game down. I know it is going to be quick out there for the first couple minutes or so, but just slow everything down and realize it’s the same game it was in Bowie. Just a little bit more people in the stands.”
What was your reaction a few weeks ago when Buck Showalter said you likely wouldn’t be coming up?
“I was focused on going to instructional league anyway. Them actually saying in the media that I’m not getting called up, just made me want to work even harder to get there next year. And go down to instructional league and work on some timings to home plate and work on my curveball. And then, you know, not expecting it, I get a call.
Does being with the team in the spring help the transition?
“Yeah, definitely. I was a lot more nervous the first day of spring training than I was today coming into the locker room. Because I knew some of the guys a little bit on a personal level and the other guys I knew their names.
What was the call to your parents like?
“I called my mom and dad five times each and none of them answered. My pitching coach in high school actually answered at 4 in the morning first. He was the first to know. But my parents, I called them again about 5:30 and they answered. And they put it on speakerphone and I told my parents together. The next thing you know they are on a plane here.”
Why do you think you can handle this?
“I have the confidence to. If you keep the ball down I’m not going to get hurt even if they do get a hit. You’ve just got to go back out there and focus and get the next guy. I have all the pitches I need to have. I’ve just got to throw them for strikes and get the guy out.”
What about adjusting to the bullpen after your detailed preparation for starts?
“I just thought about that about 30 minutes ago. Maybe I need to go play catch with [center fielder] Adam Jones in the fifth or sixth inning. If I can do that, I don’t know. I don’t know what I’m going to have to do, but I think the adrenaline, the stadium, the team, the big leagues, I think I’ll have enough energy to get going.”
Does it make it easier with 20-year-old Manny Machado on the roster?
“Definitely. Me and him have known each other for two years, now. … You know, him being the same age as me is pretty neat. Him being on the same team and being able to relate to what’s going on and what the process is going to be. How the game is going to be handled. Two teenagers, well I’m a teenager, Machado is in his 20s now. That’s what I’m here to do is help the team win. And Machado is too.”
What’s the reception from the other relievers been like?
“It’s been great. Those guys have welcomed me pretty well, they all welcomed me. And congratulated me, shook my hand. I’m excited to throw, if I throw tonight. “
What happened after you got the call?
“About 3:45 a.m., basically Brian Graham told me to meet him in the lobby at 5:15. I was down at the lobby at 415. I was ready to go. At the AmericInn (in Sarasota, Fla.). Next thing you know I had to get back up to my room to get my phone charger. I had to go back up to it again to get my toiletry bag. I was definitely rushing a little bit to get going on that plane. Then we went to the field to get my baseball stuff.”
Are you always that forgetful?
“No, never. I’m sure I forgot some things, too.”
Is the curveball the pitch you’ve been working on?
“Just (be) more consistent. It’s got good depth to it, but just be more consistent with it.”
Have you completely shelved the cutter (since the organization took it away)?
“No, it’s not out of my repertoire. I’ve always had it. I’ve thrown it in bullpens. Ever since spring training I’ve kept it in my back pocket. I still have a feel for it. If it comes to that time and I feel like I can throw it for a strike, I’m gonna.”
Bundy was told that former Cy Young winner John Smoltz said on MLB Network to go pretend like he’s pitching in a Double-A game. His thoughts?
“That’s good advice. That’s all it is, is 60 feet, six inches. Same at Double-A Bowie.”
Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun