Baseball: Q-and-A with Blayne Weller, Windy City ThunderBolts pitcher
July 26, 2012 9:16PM
Blayne Weller, ThunderBolts pitche. | Steve Millar~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: August 28, 2012 6:16AM
Weller is in his first year with the ThunderBolts after being acquired in a preseason trade with the River City Rascals. Through Wednesday, he was 4-0 with a 3.47 ERA. He began the season in the bullpen, but entered the starting rotation in early June. The former Minnesota Twins farmhand was drafted in 2008 out of Key West (Fla.) High School.
You’ve really pitched well lately. What’s been the key to your success?
Instead of going out there and worrying what I’m going to throw, I’ve just been going out there and enjoying the game. It took me a long time to learn you’ve got to enjoy it. You’ve got to want to be out there. That creates that fire to want to win.
You took a bouncer off your head and had to leave the game (July 18) against Normal. How scary was that?
If it would have done anything more severe, it would have been (scary). It wasn’t anything serious. They just had to take me out because I was bleeding. It kind of split my ear open.
Had you ever been hit in the head while pitching before?
My first year in pro ball with the Twins, the catcher was throwing down to second base. He missed his throw and hit me in the back of the head. That was the other time I was hit in the head.
Your starting rotation has been dominant lately. Are you guys competitive with each other?
Not really. We all back each other up 110 percent. We’re all friends. This whole team is just a bunch of friends. It’s a lot of fun.
How fun is it to be in the heat of a pennant race?
This whole race to win a championship is just amazing. It’s fun. There are a lot of baseball players around here that want to win. It makes it more competitive, a lot more interesting and more fun.
Do you have any hidden talents?
I like spear fishing and hunting and all kinds of outdoor stuff like that, if that counts as a talent. I guess that’s more of leisure activity, but I’m pretty good at it.
What’s your favorite baseball movie?
“Bull Durham,” for sure. It’s funny, it shows the lives of a baseball player. It’s fun. It’s amazing. It’s great.
What’s on your iPod?
I listen to everything. I love country, though, that’s my No. 1 thing. I love Eric Church, Justin Moore, Bradley Gilbert, they’re all great.
What’s your entrance song?
I picked “Hurt” by Johnny Cash, but they refuse to play it. The one I chose when I first got here was “A Lot of Boot Left to Fill” by Eric Church. I changed it, but for some reason they keep playing the Eric Church song.
If you had to go on one reality show, what would it be?
“Survivor” would be a lot of fun. I would go on “Fear Factor” if that was still on. I was into that back in the day. I think all that crazy stuff they did on that show would be fun.
You’re stranded on a deserted island and can have an endless supply of one food. What do you pick?
Roast beef and pepper jack cheese and bread. I could eat that the rest of my life.
As told to Steve Millar