Brady Rodgers was drafted by the Houston Astros in the 3rd round of the 2012 draft. Since the draft, Rodgers has pitched in a total of only 12 games, but in those few games was able to live up to being a third round pick; posting some fairly impressive numbers, in his first (partial) season.
Going 7-2, with a 2.89 ERA in 62.1 innings pitched this past season, Rodgers certainly showed the type of potential he has to become a big league starter. If he can keep on pitching the way he did in 2012, I feel it’s truly only a matter of time before he’s on the mound down in Houston.
But posting great numbers isn’t something that’s new to Rodgers; he’s been doing it for years. In three years at Arizona State University, Rodgers went a combined 23-10 with a 2.39 ERA–the second best career ERA in ASU team history.
Rodgers’ first full season in 2013 will be the real test to see if he can keep up the stellar pitching throughout the long season, but if he pitches the way he’s capable of doing, sky’s the limit.
Brady Rodgers–pitcher in the Astros organization–took the time recently to answer some of my questions:
1.) At what age did you first become interested in baseball? Who was your biggest influence growing up?
My biggest influence had to be my dad. He was the one who got me interested at a really young age; probably around 2 years old, he got me my first baseball glove and I fell in love with the game right away. He took time out of his day to make sure I was learning the game the right way and that I could be good at it.
2.) Who was your favorite player growing up? Why?
When I was growing up I had 2 favorite players: Nolan Ryan and Greg Maddux. Nolan was a bull on the mound and wasn’t afraid of any hitter, and Maddux was pin point and could put the ball where ever he wanted. So the way I pitch is kind of like both pitchers combined. A guy who isn’t afraid and can throw the ball wherever he wants.
3.) You were drafted by the Astros in the 3rd round of the 2012 draft. What was that process like for you? Where were you when you first found out? Initial thoughts?
The process was definitely a long one, but also a good one, and I have to thank God for giving me the opportunity to even get drafted. The Astros are my hometown team–the one I grew up watching and loving–so that’s what also made it even better. During the draft I was at my house with friends and family and I found out as soon as my name was called. My initial thoughts were “this has to be a dream”, because ever since I was little I have always dreamt of playing for the Astros, and now I’m one step closer to my dream.
4.) You played for team USA in 2011. What was that experience like?
The experience was one I’ll never forget because it was real fun and I was surrounded by some of the best college players in the nation, and that’s what made it different. We got to wear the nation’s colors and wear USA across our chest which really means a lot. Also, the team was just fun to be around and we have built friendships that will last a life time.
5.) Going into 2012 (your first pro season) what were you hoping to accomplish?
My main goal was to stay healthy, but my other main focus was to get use to a five-man rotation and getting used to throwing every 5th day, rather than once a week like in college. Also to keep my arm fresh so that it could withstand a 200 inning season and I feel like I reached all of my goals.
6.) What do you feel went well in 2012? What do you feel you need to work on for 2013?
The whole year of 2012 went perfect, and I wouldn’t change a thing. For 2013, I feel like I need to keep learning how to pitch and examining hitters swings, as well as their approach to the plate, and to get on a good throwing program that can help me stay healthy through a long season.
7.) Is there any player you model your game after?
I model my pitching after Greg Maddux because I want to be able to use all of pitches at any time and put them where I want, but the way I play is my own style.
8.) Favorite TV show?
I have two favorite TV shows: ‘Family Guy’ and ‘The League’. I always love comedies because laughter is the best medicine.
9.) Favorite food?
If I had to pick one plate of food I could eat every day, a nice steak (medium rare) with a side of mashed potatoes and green beans.
10.) Lastly, what advice would you give to kids who are just starting out that dream of playing professional baseball one day?
Just to continue to love the game and have fun playing it. There will be some days that the game doesn’t treat you right but if you continue to work hard and love it you will have success. Also, never take your eyes off the prize, because once you do there are other players out there that will pass you up.
Big thanks to Brady Rodgers for taking the time to answer my questions.
You can follow him on twitter: @Rodgers20