Catching Up with Jeff Manship

jeff manship mug

When it comes to the starting rotation, nothing has gone as planned for the Twins in 2009. For Jeff Manship however, that’s a good thing. The 25-year-old righthander was taken in the 14th round by the Twins in 2006 and remained below most fan’s radars until his unlikely promotion to the big leagues last month.

I caught up with the rookie starter earlier this week after he completed a pre-game meal in the Twins clubhouse.

DZ: It’s been about a month since you made your major league debut, talk about that month – what’s it been like for you?

MANSHIP: It’s been a great month. I’ve been having a lot of fun getting to meet everybody here and just being part of it right now especially what we are going through right now being so close to possibly making the playoffs.

DZ: I imagine pitching in a pennant race has to be a dream come true.

MANSHIP: Absolutely. It adds a little pressure, but it’s good pressure.

DZ: It looks like you are scheduled to start on Saturday against the Tigers…

MANSHIP: Actually, it got bumped back to Tuesday. I should be going against – I think – Chicago.

DZ: OK. Right now, almost all of the games are must wins…how do you deal with the pressure that comes with that?

MANSHIP: You really try not to change too much. You just go out there and try and help the team win as best as possible – try to throw strikes. Basically, implement the same philosophy you have every time you go out.

DZ: I like to ask this to rookie pitchers: obviously, there’s an adjustment pitching in the big leagues. Have you thrown a pitch this year where you thought “This is a good pitch; this is an ‘out’ pitch” and someone smacked it pretty good?

MANSHIP: Absolutely. That’s all part of the learning process – you have to deal with that. I think you realize the (strike) zone is a little tighter too. It’s all just part of the learning process…I think when you fall behind (in the count) you are going to get hurt more here.

DZ: You don’t get away with mistakes as much.

MANSHIP: Exactly.

DZ: One last thing, you’re a Notre Dame guy – went to Notre Dame – and they lost to Michigan this weekend in football. A lot of people are thinking this is a kind of a turnaround year for them. How do you think they are going to do?

MANSHIP: I think they’ll definitely be better than last year. Just watching the offense, they seemed a lot more productive. I think they’ll do big things. I know (head coach) Charlie Weis has promised a lot – I am hoping so…I saw about half the (Michigan) game. It was an exciting game, but it didn’t turn out in our favor. That’ll happen for time to time.

See more of David Zingler’s interviews with Twins players:

September 16: Brian Duensing
September 3: Jon Rauch
August 28: Nick Punto
August 27: Scott Baker
August 18: Jason Kubel
August 16: Carl Pavano
July 28: Justin Morneau
July 15: Anthony Swarzak
July 10: Bobby Keppel
July 8: Denard Span

One Response to “Catching Up with Jeff Manship”

  1. Morneau on the Injury, the Metrodome & More » MinnesotaSCORE Says:

    […] 18: Jeff Manship September 16: Brian Duensing September 3: Jon Rauch August 28: Nick Punto August 27: Scott Baker […]

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