I would like to thank Corbin Burnes for giving me the opportunity to interview him. Corbin Burnes currently is the ninety-sixth prospect according to MLB Pipeline and is on the road to being a big leaguer. He split time between the Carolina and Southern League, in 145.2 innings he posted a 1.67 ERA with 140 strikeouts to go with 36 walks. We here at Six Man Rotation are looking forward to watching how his career unfolds.
You went to St. Mary’s College of California and played your high school ball at Centennial in Bakersfield, California. What I was wondering is what attracted you to play at St. Mary’s and what your recruitment was like in high school?
CB: “Wasn’t really recruited at all. Talked to maybe 2 pro scouts and only had 2 D1 offers. Chose St Mary’s because it fit me very well academically and loved the campus when I went on a visit.”
Can you walk me through your draft day? Who was the person that broke the news to you? And what was going through your mind when you got the call?
CB: “Ya draft day was pretty stressful for me. We thought for quite a while I was going to be taken the first day but that didn’t work out and I was fortunate enough to be taken early day 2. Got a call from the Brewers area scout and soon after my agent and was told they were going to take me with the next pick. Still to this point it’s one of the best moments to happen to me. I had worked hard for a long time to get that call and it was a dream come true.”
The minor leagues are known for having some weird and wacky promotions, such as jerseys or special nights. What is the most interesting promotion you have been a part of or seen another team partake in?
CB: ‘Ya it’s pretty cool to have different jerseys on promotion nights. My favorite was in Biloxi every Monday night was military appreciation night so we wore camo jerseys. Always thought that was pretty cool because I come from a family of veterans.”
You induced a lot of ground balls this past season, is that something you focus on and practice executing?
CB: “Ya ever since I’ve started pitching I’ve been a ground ball pitcher. I think that comes from the movement of my offspeed pitches and location of the fastballs I throw. I try to keep everything down.”
Do you have any superstitions before you go on the mound? What’s your pregame routine?
CB: “No superstitions but I have a strict routine I stick to that’s developed over the years. Routine includes a bunch of stretching and different things to get my body and arm loose and also a couple things to get me focused don’t usually do those things until right before I go out. I like to stay loose and have fun before I pitch and lock in about 30 min before first pitch.”
When you came into this season was there anything the Brewers asked you to work on? If so what was it?
CB: “Ya in spring training I was approached to make a small delivery change that would help me in the future and I got positive results immediately and was able to carry that success throughout the entire season.”
Is there anything your coaches have asked you to work on this offseason? Do you plan on training with anyone?
CB: “Nothing in particular. Just said to work hard this offseason and prepare for a big year next year. I train at the same place I did last year and intend on training the same as I did last year as it seemed to work for me this last season.”
Are there any players current or former you model your game after? Have you taken anything from another player and added that to your game?
CB: “I’ve always liked Nolan Ryan and Jared Weaver. Ya I’m always talking to guys and learning things whether it’s pitches or pitch sequences or even routine. I was lucky enough to play with some older guys this year in Biloxi so I picked up a lot of things.”
What did your teammates teach you?
CB: “My teammates were able to help me out with throwing to certain hitters and were full of info on just different ways to get guys out when you don’t have your best stuff.”
Did you notice a difference a bump in hitters when you got promoted from the Carolina League to the Southern League? If so what was the difference, where they more disciplined, were they better at recognizing pitches?
CB: “Ya the hitters were more disciplined and had a set approach. Chased less pitches and would capitalize on mistakes.”
Do you know where you the Brewers are planning on assigning you to start next year?
CB: ”No unfortunately I don’t know that yet. Probably won’t know that until spring training.”
Photo Credit: Mark P. Driscoll