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June 7, 2010

BP Unfiltered

A New Vitek in Boston

by David Laurila

The Red Sox had the 20th-overall pick in tonight’s draft, and they used it on Ball State infielder Kolbrin Vitek. A right-handed hitter, the 21-year-old Bryan, Ohio native hit .361/.445/.691 while spending the season as the Cardinals second baseman. Vitek participated in a conference call with the Boston media following his selection. Here is some of what he had to say:

On rumors that the Padres considered taking him with the ninth-overall pick: “I was definitely thinking that the Red Sox were the next in line, as they had given the most interest, and it was pretty exciting for me after my visit out to Boston this past week. It went very well and I knew that after San Diego had passed that the 20th pick was coming up shortly. When Boston picked me, I was pretty excited.”

On his position: “Tonight, when they called me, they were talking about me as a third baseman and that’s kind of what I’ve been expecting. I’ve always been working in the infield, with a stronger arm, so third base is my projected position. I played third base my entire sophomore year at Ball State and it was a pretty comfortable position for me to play. I’ve been an infielder my whole life and I have no problem taking ground balls at any position.”

On his strengths and weaknesses: “My strength as a player is my hitting ability, staying inside the ball and driving the gaps, and running the bases. The thing I need to work on, obviously, is playing third base because it will be my first season there since my sophomore year of college.”

On how his game compares to former Ball State teammate Jeremy Hazelbaker, who the Red Sox drafted last year in the fourth round: “It is similar in that we both hit the ball and run a little bit; we both have speed that we can get around the bases quickly and beat out some ground balls. He’s obviously from the left side, and he’s an outfielder, so he plays a different type of game, a little more of a small-ball game than I do, because he has a little more speed. So we’re similar in ways, but different in ways.”

On when he expects to sign: “I expect to sign right away and start my career right away. There were some numbers thrown around tonight and we decided on a number that was definitely a fair contract for me, and a fair contract for them, so we’re excited to get started and get into this thing as soon as possible.”

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<< Previous Article
The Week in Quotes: We... (06/07)
<< Previous Column
BP Unfiltered: The Pap... (06/06)
Next Column >>
BP Unfiltered: The Pap... (06/07)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Future Shock: Monday T... (06/07)

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