The Baltimore Orioles made one of the biggest splash moves last season at the trade deadline when they acquired RHP Bud Norris and an international draft slot from the Houston Astros in exchange for OF L.J. Hoes, pitching prospect Josh Hader and the Orioles 2014 competitive balance draft pick. We recently had the chance to sit down with Norris for an interview and we talked trade, adjustments, the 2014 season, Orioles doubters and the Super Bowl.
Before we get into the interview, let's get to know Norris a little bit better as some Orioles fans are still learning about him. Norris, 28, was originally drafted by the Astros in the sixth round of the 2006 MLB amateur draft and made his big league debut in 2009. Norris had spent his entire professional career in the Astros organization before being traded to Baltimore last summer and posted a 4.33 ERA in 118 career starts for Houston.
Once he came to Baltimore, Norris had to get adjusted to many things and although he did not put up the numbers he would have liked (4-3, 4.80 ERA) he showed some real promise and that he could be a force to be reckoned with in Charm City. He went 4-1 as a starter for the Orioles and two of his loses came in extra inning games when he had to come in as a relief pitcher due to an overworked bullpen.
Now let's get to the interview shall we?
Orioles101: Leading up to the trade deadline last season, what was your mindset knowing that you were one of the most talked about trade candidates?
I definitely knew I was being talked about, but my mindset was to stay focused on pitching for Houston, I can only control what I can control and that was pitching. It was definitely tough because I encouraged a trade and I had to wait to the very last second. Was very blessed and thankful for my time in Houston but losing 100+ games 4 seasons in a row was very hard on me, the team, coaches, and the city. So so so grateful for my new home.
Orioles101: When you got the news that you were traded to Baltimore, what was your first thought and what did you know about the Orioles at the time?
I was actually on the Astros team bus when the Astros GM (Jeff) Luhnow called me and told me the news. It was out on Twitter first but then the real phone call came. My first thought was more of a relief and then I got to look at the team (Orioles) and went WOW. This team has so many bright and young established players, All Stars and one hell of a D. I just wanted to come in and do my job to help this team win in 2013 and now more importantly 2014 and beyond.
Orioles101: What sort of adjustments did you have to make when coming to a ballpark like Camden Yards?
The adjustments were many. New surroundings, new manager, new teammates, new front office, new city, new everything. The biggest baseball adjustment for me was the mound and getting to work with (Matt) Wieters. Wieters is one of, if not, the best catchers in the game. We have to communicate out there and build on the relationship. Excited to work more with him in Spring.
Orioles101: What has been the best or your favorite part of being in Baltimore?
The est part was the fans. No doubt. These are some die hard fans and they got me going every day/night. The way they truly support their teams (O's and Ravens) is just special. Night in and night out, rain or shine, they were in the seats yelling for the O's. I could go on for days about this.
Orioles101: What have you worked on this offseason and what are some of the individual goals you would like to achieve in 2014?
I have worked a lot on correcting my left hip. I hurt it a few years back playing for Houston and my trainer and I said that was the first thing to fix this off season. It will help so much mechanically. My only goal is to stay healthy, stay on the field, and try to reach 200 innings. That's my job and ultimate goal.
Orioles101: Experts out there have said the Orioles have actually gotten worse this offseason and have no chance at getting back to the playoffs in 2014. What's your response to the naysayers?
Let 'em talk. What we create with that camaraderie in the clubhouse and the relationships we build going forward can't be put on paper. We can accomplish anything we want to. We have to do it as a team and a unit. We have a special team and I'm happy to be part of it.
Orioles101: Last one for you, you seem to be quite a sports fan, what are your thoughts on this year's Super Bowl being in New York and outdoors?
Being a die hard Niners fan, I truly am rooting for the Broncos. It's going to be cold and windy, but that shouldn't effect either team due to the fact their home cities have some bad weather. Seattle isn't the same team on the road. Go Niners!
Orioles101: We just want to thank you again for doing this for out readers and we wish you the best of luck this upcoming season Bud.
We want to thank Norris for taking the time to sit down with for an interview and as the 2014 season comes near, Bud will be one of the key factors of how successful the 2014 Orioles will be as he looks to help solidify the starting rotation.
Be sure to "like" our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Orioles101
Add us on Google+ Orioles101
Follow us on Twitter for all Orioles breaking news @Orioles_101
- Re-examining Free Agent Starting Pitcher Bronson Arroyo; Great Fit for Baltimore Orioles
- Masahiro Tanaka Sweepstakes Holding up Starting Pitcher Free Agent Market
- Orioles101 Sits Down with Baltimore Orioles RHP Kevin Gausman
- Orioles101 Sits Down with New Baltimore Orioles RHP Brad Brach
Short URL: http://sport-ne.ws/17fi