Former BlueClaws shortstop Jason Donald took a few minutes last week to talk with BlueClaws Blog about his 2008 season and his future with the organization. Part one of the interview can be found here.
Q: How was the experience in the Arizona Fall League?
JD: It was tremendous. Our coaching staff was great. Ryne Sandberg was our hitting ugy. Getting to work with him on an everyday basis was great. I tried to pick his brain as much as I could, especially since I was trying to learn a few new positions. He went through kind of the same thing, learning to play some third and some second.
Q: What was your reaction to the Utley injury? Do you think you have a shot to make the Opening Day roster because of it?
JD: It is what it is. You can’t replace him, really. He’s one of the best players in the game. My thought is I have no control over what the Phillies want to do. The only thing I can control is how I prepare myself for the upcoming season, so really it never crossed my mind and never changed the way I prepared myself. The only thing I can control is how I prepare.
Q: What it’s like to have your name thrown around in trade talks?
JD: That’s the business side of baseball. They are certainly going to do what they feel is best for the organization and the big league club. Either way, I really don’t have control over that and if there’s something that would have gone down I would have accepted it. I’m thrilled to still be with the Phillies. Either way, it would have been a positive, but I’m happy to stay.
Q: What are the toughest parts about playing other positions besides shortstop?
JD: There are certain situations in games where you have different responsibilities, and that was one of the tougher things. I needed to gain experience at third and short. You can take your ground balls and turn double plays in practice, but until you see it in a game it’s completely different. You need to think like a player at that position. It’s something I like and I embraced it.