JUPITER, Fla. - "So far, so good," said Kyle Fischer after his first few weeks of professional baseball with the Miami Marlins' organization.
Fischer, who was drafted in the 30th round by the Miami Marlins, is currently in Jupiter, Fla. In seven innings, he has an ERA of 12.86 but has struck out 11 batters while issuing just two walks.
"There is a little bit of a learning curve early on but we have good coaches down here," he said. "You just keep working your butt off and things will improve."
Fischer said that right now he is being used primarily in relief.
"I think that I have five appearances. I do not have wins or losses - they have not recorded them. It is more just innings pitched.
"I am learning what it is like to play at this level," he said. "This is kind of like the Northwoods League except here we have the best of the best. The players here were drafted for a reason. It is not like playing at St. Cloud (State) where you run into teams where with their seven, eight and nine hitters you can just pump fastballs past them. Here you have to think out every pitch and every at-bat at this level."
Fisher said that coaches do not care about the high ERA.
"We do not care if they hit your change-up, we want you to throw the change-up in the game, get your confidence in it and get used to throwing it in a game so that at each higher level, they might not hit it," he said. "At this level, they tell us every day that statistics do not matter. Work on your pitches and if they hit it that is fine."
Fischer said one of the things that he has yet to adjust to is the heat and humidity.
"It is hot but the humidity kills you," he said.
Fischer said that being in a mix with players from all over he has started to learn spanish.
"I have down-loaded an app on my tablet and it gives you basic spanish lessons so I can communicate with some of the latin players."
Fischer, like all players, is living in a hotel rather than the old standard of living with a host family.
"Hotels get old but my roommate is Kyle Porter from the University of California. He is good guy," Fischer said.
"Our longest road trip is two hours away so it is nice not having to go on a two-day road trip. It is nice to get back and sleep in your own bed."
Fischer also got to workout with Marlins' pitcher Brad Penny who was in a rehab assignment in Jupiter.
"It was something else," he said. "You see these guys on TV all the time. It is cool seeing these guys that you looked up to when you were little. It gives you a lot of motivation.
"They were fortunate enough to make a career out of it so my thought is that when they talk, listen. They did something right."