By: Justin Regnani
Will Venable grew up in San Rafael California where he was the star player of the high school basketball team. He went on to Princeton university where he continued basketball and also started playing baseball. Growing up Will's father Max Venable played in the MLB as well. After careful thought about weighing his options Venable decided he wanted to go the baseball route instead of basketball. Since being called up to the Padres in 2008, Venable has had a solid start to his pro career.
What was it like finally getting called up to the Padres?
-Getting called up to the Padres was a very special moment for me. It was something I had dreamed about for a long time and it felt great to have all my hard work pay off. What made it even more special was that my dad was one of my coaches at the time and he was in the room when my manager told me the news.
Whats the toughest part of being in the league?
-Baseball at any level is one of the toughest games to play because of all of the things you can't control. It's a game of failure and staying positive can be challenging. To be able to maintain that focus and produce against the best pitchers in the world every day is what I think is the toughest part about the major leagues.
Do you have any pre-game rituals?
-Every game I've played in going back to college I have used the national anthem as a time to focus my thoughts and energy for the game.
Even though it's been a tough season, how do you feel about the padres chances in building a contender?
-Our season didn't get off to a very good start but this is by far the most talented team I have been on since I've been in the big leagues. We're it not for the misfortune of injuries, mainly to our pitching staff, I have no doubt this team would be battling at the top of the division. And with so many of these talented players being young, San Diego should be excited about having a winning team, not only soon, but for years to come.
What is it like to come back and play in front of SF and Oakland?
-It has been an unbelievable experience to come back to the bay area and play. Family has always been the most important thing in my life so being able to share the great opportunity of playing at the big league level with them has meant a lot.
Do you see yourself wanting to be in the Padres for a long time?
-I would love to play for the Padre as long as possible. I love San Diego and the Padres are the only organization I know.
What goals have you set for yourself as a pro player?
-My only goal as a professional is to win a championship. Even at the minor league or even high school and collegiate level, winning a championship is the greatest feeling I have ever felt in sports. I can only imagine what it would feel like at the major league level.
Who were you most excited to have pitching to you when you came in to the league?
-A couple guys I was excited to face for the first time were Lincecum and Halladay. They were such big names as I was coming into the big leagues I was excited to have the opportunity to face them
What has been your most memorable moment in the game? And most memorable hit or home run?
-My most memorable moment was my first hit. It was a triple and came in my first at bat. The most memorable home run was my first career, which I hit in Milwaukee against Jeff Suppan.
Who have you not had the chance to face that you want to face?