Question and Answer with Andy Shipman

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NCCubFan
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Question and Answer with Andy Shipman

Postby NCCubFan » Sat Jul 30, 2005 12:06 am

Image

Andy Shipman, Pitcher for the 2005 Southern League First Half Champion West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx, has graciously agreed to answer questions from posters on NSBB! If you would like to send a comment to Andy, or if you would like to ask Andy a question, feel free to post it here. I will allow the questions/comments to be posted until August 5th at midnight. Once Andy has had an opportunity to answer them, the responses will be posted.

From the Jaxx website:
Quote:
Acquired:
Trade with Boston Red Sox


This session will be coordinated as in accordance with The NSBB Q & A Guidelines

Thank you to Andy for taking the time to interact with us on such an up close and personal level! I encourage everyone to visit the official website of the West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx. In addition, thank you to all of you for making NSBB such a wonderful community!

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rawaction
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Postby rawaction » Sat Jul 30, 2005 8:25 am

Thanks Mr Shipman for fielding our questions.

First question: Do you think the "Closer's Mentality" is real or a myth? Meaning, do you believe you have to possess a certain level of intestinal fortitude to be a successful closer?

Secondly, (don't want to jinx you) but you have not given up a long ball in 50 innings this season.....you must have a killer sinker! Could you tell us what pitches you throw and how often you rely on them?

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Postby Transmogrified Tiger » Sat Jul 30, 2005 10:00 am

Thanks for fielding our questions Andy.

Having pitched in the Red Sox organization, can you outline the differences between them and the Cubs philosophically(i.e throwing programs, off day routines, etc.)?

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Postby Iceblink » Sun Jul 31, 2005 9:08 pm

Andy - thanks very much for answering questions for us.

When did you move to the bullpen, and what (or who) made that decision for you? What's life like in a bullpen during the first few innings of a game, and does it change as the innings pass and the possibility of pitching moves into the pitchers' minds?

Thanks again, and best of luck this season and beyond. Hope to see you pitching well in Cubbie blue soon.

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Postby UK » Mon Aug 01, 2005 2:03 pm

1st, you should be applauded for being able to pitch despite the vision setback.

2nd, how difficult was it being in a military family and having had to move to various locations as far as being able to play baseball and new teammates/friends every couple of years?

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Postby chicubs » Wed Aug 03, 2005 8:01 pm

1) Simple question: Are you a closer at the major league level?

2) Tough Question: Better organization: Cubs or Red Sox?
FIRE DUSTY!

If you want Corey to sign your baseball, just hold it eye level. He can't pass it up. - Elrhino

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Postby Laura » Thu Aug 04, 2005 2:08 pm

Thank you for answering our questions!

If you were to compare yourself to a pitcher in the major leagues, who would it be and why?

Is there a change in emphasis on developing certain skills at the AA level vs Advanced-A?

If you could choose a killer closer song, what would it be? :mrgreen:

Good luck with the remainder of the season!
I'm only here for the Dongs.

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Postby Jon » Thu Aug 04, 2005 2:11 pm

Mr. Shipman-

What is it like watching the big league club (particularly Murton) on WGN in the clubhouse with your teammates? And what is it like sitting in a minor league bullpen every day with a bunch of loud kids around you?

Expanding upon the "closer's mentality" question, do you feel any difference while pitching in a blowout vs. a 1-run save situation? How often do you have to "energize" yourself when you enter a game that is already lopsided?

When you're on the road, does the music played as each opposing batter steps into the box ever annoy a pitcher or do most block that out?

After pitching 4 games in the SAL, what was your first offseason as a professional baseball player like? Do you remember what you worked on that winter?

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Postby abuck1220 » Thu Aug 04, 2005 8:59 pm

thanks for taking our questions...

are you guys aware of the devotion of cub fans to the minor league system? i think the interest among cub fans in the farm system has increased over the last couple years, and i was wondering if you guys noticed it.

thanks again and good luck the rest of the season.

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Postby Outshined_One » Thu Aug 04, 2005 9:49 pm

Mr. Shipman,

What led you down the path to becoming a pitcher? Did you idolize any pitchers growing up, love the game of baseball as a young man, or did some other events lead you to becoming a pitcher today?

Secondly, what do you think you need to work on the most in order to become a successful major leaguer?

Thanks a bunch for answering these questions! We look forward to your answers.

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Postby Chris » Fri Aug 05, 2005 2:00 pm

Andy, thank you for joining us here at NSBB. I really appreciate your outlook on life and the way that you conduct yourself as a player and as a person.

I read a great interview with you last month on the Minor League Baseball website. In the article it said that you were upset for the first time after not getting drafted in the 2003 draft, despite the fact that you were projected to be selected in the early middle rounds. How did you use that as motivation and does not getting selected still motivate you today?

Congratulations on a great season!

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Postby RyCubsFan » Fri Aug 05, 2005 5:44 pm

Hey Andy, thanks for taking our questions!

If you could have the stuff of any the Cubs pitchers that have been at West Tennessee this year, who would it be? What if you could have a pitch from one pitcher, and a different pitch from another pitcher? (i.e. Hill's curve, someone else fastball)...
"They can feel however they want about how I pitch but it's not going to help them, because I'm going to go out there and I'm going to dominate either way." -- Sean Gallagher

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Postby Chris » Mon May 22, 2006 9:10 pm

Q & A With Andy Shipman

Do you think the "Closer's Mentality" is real or a myth? Meaning, do you believe you have to possess a certain level of intestinal fortitude to be a successful closer?

You gotta have a different makeup in your head, you gotta have a different mindset. It definitely takes a lot to go out there day after day. You can go out there one time and get the job done but to be successful everytime you go out is tough. It’s a different game, it’s the end of the game and you have to have a different mentality. You definitely have to have that intestinal fortitude to go out there and get it done.

At one point in 2005 you had not given up a long ball in 50 innings. Could you tell us what pitches you throw and how often you rely on them?

I throw a 4-seam fastball, 2-seam fastball, curveball, slider and changeup. The situation dictates the pitch selection. I throw the 2 seam and changeup more to lefties and my curveball and slider to right handers. My 4-seam is pretty much my get ahead pitch and sometimes my put away pitch elevated or out of the zone. Usually the fastball to get ahead and the offspeed to get guys out.

Having pitched in the Red Sox organization, can you outline the differences between them and the Cubs philosophically (i.e throwing programs, off day routines, etc.)?

The Cubs are more I guess you could say throws. The Red Sox are more time. You go out and throw a 15 minute long toss or a 15 minute side session. I like the Cubs a little bit better.

When did you move to the bullpen, and what (or who) made that decision for you?

My first professional outing was a start and it didn’t go so well. That was when I went to the bullpen and after that it kinda stuck.

What's life like in a bullpen during the first few innings of a game, and does it change as the innings pass and the possibility of pitching moves into the pitchers' minds?

You talk about the game, talk about the hitters. You talk about all kinds of stuff and there’s all kinds of stories going on out there.

How difficult was it being in a military family and having had to move to various locations as far as being able to play baseball and new teammates/friends every couple of years?

I liked it actually; it wasn’t very hard at all. I liked that I got to go and play on new teams and get to see new leagues and new types of baseball from the east coast to the west coast and the Midwest. I got to meet new people and liked it.

Simple question: Are you a closer at the major league level?

I don’t think so.

Relief man? Long relief? Short relief? Set-Up Man?

Some kind of relief. Actually, I think I could close at the Major Leagues. Will someone let me close? I don’t know.

Tough Question: Better organization: Cubs or Red Sox?

I have to say the Cubs.

If you were to compare yourself to a pitcher in the major leagues, who would it be and why?

Matt Clement. I like the way he throws. I’ve watched him a lot and I’ve got some pitch selections from him and the way he goes about things. I’m not saying I throw like him but I throw similar to him.

If you could choose a killer closer song, what would it be?

Thunderstruck, AC/DC

Expanding upon the "closer's mentality" question, do you feel any difference while pitching in a blowout vs. a 1-run save situation?

I don’t.

How often do you have to "energize" yourself when you enter a game that is already lopsided?

Never.

When you're on the road, does the music played as each opposing batter steps into the box ever annoy a pitcher or do most block that out?

I never usually hear their songs because I’m not paying attention.

After pitching 4 games in the SAL, what was your first offseason as a professional baseball player like?

Focused. It wasn’t very good so therefore I thought I had a lot of work to do to get to where I wanted to be.

First offseason job?

My first offseason job was at a grocery store names Gerb’s. I was a cashier at Gerb’s and also did lessons. I still do lessons in the offseason. I always had an odd job in the offseason.

Are you guys aware of the devotion of cub fans to the minor league system?

Definitely, they’re everywhere.

I think the interest among cub fans in the farm system has increased over the last couple years, and I was wondering if you guys noticed it.

I notice it, except for in Jackson, Tennessee. They weren’t very devout.

What led you down the path to becoming a pitcher?

Ever since I was a little kid. I got in to little league late and my dad was my coach in all sports when I was a little kid. I threw hard when I was a little kid and therefore they put me on the mound and that got me going as a pitcher.

What do you think you need to work on the most in order to become a successful major leaguer?

Consistency.

In what area?

Not just throwing strikes, but throwing quality strikes and getting the ball where I want it everytime.

I read a great interview with you on the Minor League Baseball website. In the article it said that you were upset for the first time after not getting drafted in the 2003 draft, despite the fact that you were projected to be selected in the early middle rounds. How did you use that as motivation and does not getting selected still motivate you today?

It does. It was kind of a setback. I wasn’t expecting to go high in the draft, I just expected to go in the draft at that time. To not go in the draft whatsoever kind of lit a fire under me when I went to the Alaskan League and pitched well up there and got a chance to sign with the Red Sox. I’ve always had a little bit of a chip. I got setback. I didn’t get any money to sign. I mean, I got more than I should have as a free agent to sign but no money to put in the bank, therefore I’m working odd jobs in the offseason doing odd-end jobs. I’m trying to make it, trying to prove that I should be there.

Did any of the organizations give an explanation when they didn’t draft you?

The Dodgers. The Scout with the Dodgers had said that they were trying to sign me but they couldn’t. They were trying to draft me but the health board had crossed my name entirely out of the draft because of my eye.

If you could have the stuff of any the Cubs pitchers that have been at Iowa this year, who would it be? What if you could have a pitch from one pitcher, and a different pitch from another pitcher?

Rich Hill’s curveball, J.K’s changeup, Guzman’s fastball, Watson’s split and I think I’d be doing just fine.

Biggest goal as the season progresses?

Our biggest goal is to reach the playoff and start winning consistently. We know that we can win and that we can play well. We just need to go out and do it.


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