On the heels of a loss to the Orioles that I would rather not talk about and pretend never happened (but will be reminded of it once Shawn posts his game recap), I was able to sit down with Double-A outfielder Jeff Corsaletti, who is currently hitting .299/.415/.549. The 25-year old is projected by SoxProspects.com to be a potential fourth outfielder at the major league level, something Corsaletti addresses in my interview with him.
You’re coming off an all-star season and are now repeating Portland, where you are, to put it mildly, doing a fantastic job. Were you expecting to be assigned to AAA at the beginning of the year?
Well, you always hope to move up a level each year, but at the same time you have no control whether or not you get called up to the next level. I feel that as a player you just have to play hard and not worry about things you cannot control.
What were the reasons the Sox had you repeat AA? What do they want you to work on as you work to make the majors?
The main focus this year was to work on driving the ball more and to be more aggressive in up-count situations.
What have you been able to do this year that has made you so successful?
Being more aggressive in up-count situations has given me the ability to drive the ball more. I have always been able to drive the ball and get myself in good hitting counts, so by being selective and aggressive at the same time I have had the chance to let the power really become a factor.
Most people view you as a potential backup outfielder in the majors. Would you be happy with that role or do you feel you can contribute past a backup outfielder role?
It’s funny reading all the scouting reports and projections from people who have never played the game. I don’t know many teams that draft players to be backup outfielders or just organizational players. Teams draft you because they think you have a shot to become a major leaguer. I know for me the goal is to make it to the major leagues and play everyday, but at the same time when you make it to the major leagues you need to know your role for that team.
You’re part of a talented ballclub that includes Michael Bowden, perhaps the best Sox pitching prospect that has yet to debut with thebig league club. can you give us an insider’s look as to Bowden’s scouting report both as a pitcher and teammate?
Mike is a great guy to have as a teammate. He is someone that you want on your side when you’re walking into a fight and at the same time is someone who will laugh and joke with you. On the mound he is a bulldog who goes after you and always wants the ball. Its only a matter of time until he gets to Boston.
[Evan: The Cleveland Indians are scouting the Sox minor leaguers heavily because they like the options the Sox have should the Indians make C.C. Sabathia available. While the Indians would prefer to deal with the Red Sox, it is unlikely the Sox would find a fit. That being said, Buster Olney commented that the principal player the Indians could get in return is Bowden.]
Do you read any red sox blogs (defined as a web site not affiliated with a newspaper)? if so, which sites and what do you like about them? If not, why not?
I try to stay away from that stuff. I see players who constantly get caught up in all those things and tend to worry about it. You just have to worry about yourself and play your game, and when you do see something negative that someone writes about you, you take it as motivation.
Who would you love to step into the batters box against in the major leagues and why?
As a hitter you always want to face the best guys and beat the best guys. It all comes down to being a competitor. Personally, I think it would be fun to face Mariano Rivera.
How would you describe yourself to someone who wants to know your scouting report?
I would describe myself as an athletic outfielder who has a good approach at the plate, and most importantly who is fun to watch play the game.
Thanks to Jeff Corsaletti for agreeing to the interview and best of luck to him!
One thing I have become extremely impressed with over the last few years is the sheer depth of the Sox minor league system. I challenge anyone to find another organization that has been successful the last four years in integrating rookies at the major league level, drafting and developing prospects that have a high percentage of reaching the majors and assembling the depth that all organizations crave. It’s truly odd for me to sit there unperturbed with injuries and attrition, knowing we have more than capable replacements in the minors. Whodathunk?