Mariners Insider

Taijuan Walker develops on/off the mound

Post by Larry Larue / The News Tribune on Feb. 14, 2012 at 7:13 am with 4 Comments »
February 14, 2012 7:13 am
Taijuan Walker

Interesting story today on Seattle Mariners rookie Taijuan Walker, who’s interview skills have blossomed in the not-quite-two-years since being drafted out of high school.

Walker, 19, impressed his Class A pitching coach, Rich Dorman, and scouts following him last year, and with a 95 mph fastall and a developing curve, it’s not hard to see why. Dorman said one scout compared Walker to Bob Gibson.

Yikes!

Walker comes across as hungry but humble, a kid raised by a single mom who worked long hours to provide for Walker, his two brothers and a sister.

“I’d cook and try to clean up for her. I did it on my own, because I knew she was already working so much,” he said.s “When I signed, I bought her a car and a house. I’d love to eventually make sure she didn’t have to work any more, let her enjoy life.”

Read the whole story here: Walker talked about a father who promised to show up on draft day to share the joy – then didn’t – his battles learning the curve, and more.

Great kid, one promising pitcher. Two years ago, talking to him on a conference call after the draft, Walker was nervous, spoke only a few words at a time. Now? He’s open, thoughtful, articulate. Oh, and that fastbaqll occasionally touches 98 mph.

Leave a comment Comments → 4
  1. WTraveler says:

    Lets hope he makes the big club and has a good year so Jack Z can trade him for a prospect or two over next winter…

  2. SandlotSam says:

    I heard his interview segment on KIRO radio a week or two ago. He really sounded mature and grounded, I was totally impressed. Those qualities will serve him well when he takes the American League by storm in the not-too-distant future.

  3. “Lets hope he makes the big club and has a good year so Jack Z can trade him for a prospect or two over next winter…”

    Ain’t that the freakin’ truth.

  4. Stantheman6 says:

    Bob Gibson? I’ll believe in the Bob Gibson comparison when Taijuan wins 20, posts a sub-3.00 ERA and doesn’t hesitate to plant a fastball in a batter’s backside just for thinking about getting a hit off him. Sounds like a good kid, though.

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