The roster for the USA Olympic Team was announced earlier this week. The following minor leaguers…
Knight Fills Any Role
Right-handed pitcher Brandon Knight, previously of the Independent League's Summerset Patriots, joined the Mets' organization in May of 2008 and is looking to head back to the majors after last appearing there with the Yankees in 2001 and 2002. There he had 11 career starts and pitched 19.1 in which allowed 24 runs and had only 14 strikeouts.
Knight's biggest success came with the Pittsburgh Pirates' Double-A Altoona team in 2006 in which Knight lead the league in saves with 27 and games finished with 41. While Knight may be remembered for that career highlight, he is not thinking about how many saves he can complete this season as he is entering the Zephyrs' roster late in the season, but rather work on becoming more versatile in his pitching roles.
"I was just put in that role," Knight said of his time as the relief pitcher for Altoona. "That was the second time in my career that I had been a closer. I was fun doing it. In the bullpen it's probably the closest thing there is to being a starter because you have somewhat of a routine, you know when you're going to pitch so that is usually a more comfortable situation for me."
"Saves come and go, that's just not really something I can think about too much," continued Knight. "Because I'm coming here late in the season and there are guys that already have their set roles. Muniz is the closer when he's here, when he goes to the big leagues maybe I'll work into that role. I'm just in a holding pattern of switching back and forth whatever role they want me to pitch in I'm going to do it."
Knight signed his contract in late May and because of his late signing, he is still trying to define his role on the team as well as joining the actual rotation for the organization.
"It would be nice if I was actually in the rotation, I don't know if I am actually. There are still a lot of things going on in the big leagues," Knight said. "I would like to be in the rotation, that's where I'm most comfortable. But as for now I'm happy just going back and forth between the bullpen and starting. When they give me the ball, just try and do the best I can I guess."
In order to get back into the rotation and define his position Knight has been working on locating his pitches as his main focus this season and as the key to improvement and a possible call up to the big leagues.
"Locating, that has probably been what has set me back the most in my career is not locating on a consistent basis," Knight said. "And [so far this season] I've been doing that with fastball. I've also been able to throw breaking balls behind the count, this just keep people guessing."
Besides working on location, Knight is keeping is overall game consistent and is glad that nothing has changed in his game for better or worse this season.
"Nothing, that's what's been good, it's been consistent. Just trying to locate the fastball, in and out, and throw strikes with my breaking ball," Knight said.
As with every minor league player, Knight's goal is to use his time at Triple-A to improve and get that call up.
"Of course I want to get to the big leagues, but I just want to be able to pitching consistently and consistently well and have a job next year, at least going to spring training whether it be with the Mets or someone else. There is a good chance of going to a big league chance and showing them what I can do," Knight said.
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