From Notre Dame to Lowell: Q+A with Kyle Weiland

Kyle Weiland, 21, was selected out of Notre Dame in the third round of the 2008 draft in June. Hailing from New Mexico, the 6’4″ right-hander currently has a 1.85 ERA in 34 innings (38 K, 6 BB)…
You’ve pitched extremely well at Lowell so far and have dominated the competition. What do you attribute your success to, considering that you haven’t had a lot of time to get acclimated to what the Red Sox are asking you to do?
I have to give a lot of credit to the coaching staff here in Lowell. They have made my transition into pro-ball a very easy, and exciting experience. I also have to give credit to my teammates playing behind me. It sure makes pitching easier when you are confident in your defense and thats what I have here at Lowell.
Even more intriguing about your fast start is that at least on the face of it with your ERA, your last two years at Notre Dame weren’t strong ones (2.37, 5.66, 5.04). What is going right now that didn’t at Notre Dame, or is that Notre Dame ERA misleading?
Well, like I said, it really helps when you have guys that can make plays behind you and give you the kind of confidence where you know you don’t have to make the perfect pitch every time. My experience at ND was frustrating because of a collarbone injury before my sophomore year season. It took me a little while before I was back to throwing the way I was capable.
How did you break your collarbone and has it altered your approach to the game or is it like the injury never happened?
The elements of South Bend got to me when i was out on a run and I hit a slippery patch of ice and fell awkwardly on my collarbone. It was not one of my most graceful moments, but things happen. I am completely healed from the injury and it hasn’t changed the way I throw at all.
You spent three years with Notre Dame, do you have any plans to finish up your degree?
Absolutely. Getting my degree is very important to me and the Red Sox were understanding in letting me finish up my school in the next few years.
How would you describe your experience as a baseball player in ND?
My experience at Notre Dame is something that I will always remember as one the best times of my life. If I could do it all over again I wouldn’t change a thing. There are so many great things about ND that you cannot find anywhere else. The relationships I made with so many people there, especially my teammates, is something that will stay with me the rest of my life and I am so thankful that I was given the opportunity to go there.
You went in the third round. Were you expecting to be gone earlier? What teams showed the most interest in you?
I had heard that I could go anywhere from the sandwich round to the third round but I didn’t have any expectations because I knew how crazy things can get on draft day. I just remained optimistic about the whole situation that everything would work out and that no matter what happened my dreams of being a professional baseball player were coming true. I was very fortunate that I was selected by such a great organization as the Red Sox and I am very excited about what lies in the future.
What was your single most motivating factor in signing quickly?
I wanted to start my career as soon as possible, and so did the Red Sox so it didn’t take long for us to agree on a deal and get moving.
What have the Red Sox told you about their plans for you and what they want you to work on?
Well, I am starting now in Lowell to try and get some innings under my belt because I threw so little in college. With more innings comes a better feel for all my pitches and that is the main goal for right now.
Many thanks to Kyle for answering the questions!

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