GOOD START FOR WEILAND

     Kyle Weiland is living the dream. The former Notre Dame star is back with the PawSox, after making his Major League debut with Boston.  The right hander appeared in two games, getting his feet wet in the Bigs.  He says that it is easily the biggest thing that has ever happened to him.  “Absolutely.  It was my first ever promotion, in-season.  I got to stay up there a little longer than I expected,  got a chance to pick those guys brains, see what it takes.  I asked how their rookie year went, how they adjusted to the new level.  Next time I go up there, I’ll be more well prepared.  It was a good time.”

     Weiland says he is inspired to work hard and improve upon his first two outings.  “My second outing was definitely different than my first one.  In the first one, my emotions were running high.  I was feeding off adrenaline.  I had a hard time getting into my comfort zone to pitch like I usually do.  The next outing was much different.  I had a lot more ability to control myself and the adrenaline level.  I found my comfort zone a lot sooner than in my debut.”   Weiland looks forward to his own improvement.  “There are obviously a lot more adjustments I need to make.  It’s a whole different ballgame.  Even though guys are experienced at the Triple A level, the approach in the Big Leagues is different.  You need to concentrate and constantly make quick adjustments.”

     As Weiland was set for his debut, the national anthem was playing and the starting pitcher kept reminding himself of one thing that we may take for granted.  “Breathe.  Just breathe.  I had to make sure I had my breathing under control.  I didn’t want to be sitting there, holding my breath.  I wanted to be focused.  When it comes down to it, it’s the same game.  I’m still pitching like I’ve done since I was 8 years old.  I just tried to focus and not think about being at Fenway.  We are in the pennant race and I didn’t want to let anyone down, but when you think about stuff like that, you have to pull yourself back and think in the right direction.”

     Weilands’ Major League debut took a wild turn.  He was ejected from the game after hitting Vladimir Guerrero with a pitch.  Warnings had been previously issued.  “I knew the situation coming into the game.  There had been the history of Big Papi and Kevin Gregg, so it was there.  I really didn’t think the warning was warranted. Kevin  Youkilis had been hit earlier in the game with a changeup.  It was clearly not on purpose.  I’d been throwing inside to Guerrero all day.  One got a little bit away from me and he checked his swing.  I don’t think it would have even hit him if he hadn’t checked his swing.  I guess the ejection was done with the best intentions.  The umpires were trying to keep the game under control.” 

     With family and friends in the stands, Kyle Weiland has logged his first two Major League appearances.  The first two of many to come.  He rates it a positive experience, overall.  “It was great.  It was a dream come true.  Everything you’d expect and more.  You get that taste of it and now it’s just a matter of getting back and staying for a while.”  As for his approach, now that he’s back in Pawtucket?  “Stay confident and stay hungry.”

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