Coming out of Meridian Community College in Mississippi, catcher Wade Wass was selected in the 13th round of the 2012 First-year Player Draft by Baltimore.
In a phone interview, Wade discusses what it felt like to be drafted, what he feels he would bring to the organization and what his future plans are, among other things.
BH: Tell us what it feels like to be selected by the Orioles?
WW: It’s just now sinking in that I was drafted. It feels great just to get draft by a Major League team, let alone the 13th round of the draft.
BH: Talk about your game a little bit. What type of player are you and how do you see yourself fitting in with the Orioles?
WW: I just like to play every game as hard as I can, the way it is supposed to be played. I feel as though I’m a leader on the field and
BH: What are your strengths and your weaknesses?
WW: I’d say one of my biggest strengths is hitting. I’ve been told I have great power for a catcher. One thing I think I need to work on is receiving the ball (behind the plate). I’ve been working on my defense and getting better every day.
BH: How about your defensive game?
WW: Like I said, I could use a little improvement on receiving the ball behind the plate and I work hard to get better every day.
BH: Who would you compare your game to at the Major League level so the Orioles’ fans have an idea of what your game is like?
WW: The Major Leaguer I’d probably compare myself to most would probably be Mike Napoli. He hits with power and can player a couple different positions. Like him, my second position is also first base and I can play it if needed.
BH: Were you expecting to be drafted by the Orioles or were you surprised they selected you?
WW: I definitely didn’t expect to be drafted by the Orioles. I hadn’t really heard from them prior to the draft and I filled out a bunch of paper work for teams, but the O’s weren’t one of them. Someone I’m close with actually told me that the Orioles could be a surprise pick, and I didn’t really believe it. But they were the first team I heard from on Tuesday and they decided to go ahead and take me. The Manager (Buck Showalter) actually grew up about 45 minutes from my hometown and the hitting coach is from my hometown.
BH: Do you see yourself staying at the same position or do you think you’ll be moved to another position?
WW: I think I could stay at catcher, I’m always striving to get better. But if they want me to move to first base I certainly will not complain. Anything that helps the team get better.
BH: What would you say is your best moment in baseball and why?
WW: Best moment in baseball I would say was the first of my community college Regionals this year. In the first game I hit a home run to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth, we ended up winning the game later that inning. And in the second game I hit another home run to tie the game again in the bottom of the 10th. We ended up winning that one, as well, in 14 innings.
BH: Who was your favorite team and player growing up?
WW: Pete Rose is definitely my favorite player because of the way he played the game. It didn’t matter to him if it was the World Series or the All-Star game, he always played the game the way he should. As for team, I don’t really have a favorite team. I pretty much just like certain players.
BH: What are your immediate plans now that you have been drafted by the Orioles? Is it your intention to sign now and start your professional career immediately?
WW: I think I’m actually going to end up going to Alabama to extend my college career and hopefully re-enter the draft next year. I talked with the Orioles and my family about it. I told the Orioles that I’d love to play for them and that their organization is definitely going in the right direction.