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Interview with Dunedin Blue Jays’ LHP, Sean Nolin

Interview with Dunedin Blue Jays’ LHP, Sean Nolin

June 8, 2012

Sean Nolin is presently 7-0 with a 2.43 ERA with the Dunedin Blue Jays (Photo credit: milb.com)

Left-handed pitcher, Sean Nolin, has had three strong seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays organization since being drafted in the 6th round of the 2010 MLB Draft. But it has been this season, with the Dunedin Blue Jays, where he has created the most buzz. Discussing his progression through college and professional baseball, Nolin sat down with JaysProspects to discuss his success thus far in his professional career.

Blue Jays fans should be lucky to have Nolin in their organization, as this young prospect was originally drafted in the 50th round by the Milwaukee Brewers in 2008 and the 48th round by the Seattle Mariners in 2009 before signing with the Blue Jays the following year. Explaining his reasoning why he chose to wait, Nolin told JaysProspects, “I waited because the first two times I did not felt like I was accomplished enough for pro ball. I truly felt like I needed a bit more time.” He also added, “The experience getting drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2010 was amazing as I finally felt like I was ready to start my pro career. I was very excited when it happened and I am still honored for this opportunity.”

After signing, Nolin joined the GCL Blue Jays and the Auburn Doubledays for seven games where he posted a 5.48 ERA. Explaining his experience of his first taste of professional baseball, Nolin said, “My first year with the Blue Jays followed a very long and hard sophomore season in college. I definitely came in out of shape and tired from that long season. With that said, I was very excited and ready to start my professional career. I didn’t know what to expect when I started but I feel like I have since adjusted well from playing college ball.”

And adjusted he certainly has, as Nolin progressed nicely to the Lansing Lugnuts the following year, where he played in 25 games, posting a 4-4 record with a 3.49 ERA. In 108.1 innings pitched, he stuck out a team high 113 batters, while only walking 31. Regarding his experience in Lansing, Nolin was quick to admit that the success he found on the mound and the success of the team was truly because of his teammates. “There is no denying we have a very talented minor league system,” Nolin said. “Both teams I have played with so far have been stacked with talented players. I am proud to not only call them teammates but also friends.”

Growing up in Seaford, New York, Nolin stated that he always admired the game play of another left-handed starter, Andy Pettite. While he noted that he was happy that the Yankees’ starter came back for another season in 2012, Nolin’s 2012 season has also caught many eyes.

Thus far this season with the Dunedin Blue Jays, Nolin has posted a 7-0 record, allowing only 18 earned runs in over 66 innings pitched while striking out 69 and walking 17. When asked what has enabled him find success, the young southpaw replied, “So far this season, I have found success as I have been able to get ahead of batters and have had much better control of my pitches and ability to throw them for strikes. I’m now making sure I start off every hitter with a quality pitch in the strike zone and it has made a huge difference.”

Throwing strikes, however, is not abnormal for the young prospect, as even before joining the Blue Jays organization, Nolin was racking up Ks. In fact, in 2009, with San Jacinto University, the southpaw went 4-1 with a 2.72 ERA in 46 1/3 innings, striking out 56 and walking 25. And in 2010, he went a perfect 13-0 with 84 strikeouts and a 1.98 ERA en route to being named to the NJCAA All-Region XIV team. “San Jacinto was far away from where I grew up. It was a huge difference from New York but I feel like I adjusted well for being on my own for the first time, 1000 miles away,” he said, discussing his experience at college. “But baseball is baseball wherever you go. There might be more talent in different areas of the country but it’s played the same. The main difference I have found between college ball and pro ball is that I now do not have to wake up for class anymore and can now worry about one thing for the first time – and that’s baseball.”

While at San Jacinto University, Nolin played alongside David Rollins, another present pitcher in the Blue Jays organization. Giving some insight into his former teammate, Nolin told JaysProspects, “Rollins has been a great teammate in college and hopefully I get to play with him again in pro ball soon. We are very alike in that we compete every time we go out there so that is probably a good reason we are so close.”

Though he continually praises Rollins and his other teammates, Nolin further added that he would like to credit his family and friends for getting him to this point of his career. “They have always believed in me in everything I have done. I have great support back at home and it definitely keeps me going strong knowing that they are right behind me wanting me to keep going.”

Through he has the support to excel, he also has the skill. Nolin admitted that his best talent is his competitive nature. “When I hit the mound, I never want to give up a hit. I just try and grind it out pitch-by pitch.”

While Nolin also told JaysProspects that his best skill off the mound is his strong cooking skills, the young 22-year-old also admitted that he has strong dance skills. “I like to dance. It’s a surprise to most but I feel like I can hold my own on the dance floor. You would have to see it to believe me!”

While JaysProspects certainly believes that Nolin has strong dance moves, we definitely think that his moves on the mound are ones that fans should definitely witness as well!

JaysProspects wishes Sean Nolin the best of luck in his future. We also kindly thank him for his time.