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Get to know Visalia Rawhide Catcher Dominic Miroglio

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The 2017 draftee is breaking out with increased playing time

Dominic Miroglio during his NCAA catching days

Dominic Miroglio was born on March 10th 1995 in Oakland, California. Dominic was the middle child, and only son of two architects. He attended Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland, graduating and going on to attend the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of San Francisco. (You can find his NCAA statistics here)

Dominic was drafted the first time by the Oakland Athletics in the 40th round of the 2013 MLB June Amateur Draft, and didn’t sign. He was drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 16th round of the 2016 MLB June Amateur Draft. Miroglio was taken for the third time as a College Senior by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 20th round of the 2017 MLB June Amateur Draft. Miroglio hit .317/.384/.430 good for a .372 wOBA and 102 wRC+ in 37 games for the Missoula Osprey. In the 2018 season, Miroglio has taken off as a hitter in Visalia, and has taken advantage of increased playing thanks to an unfortunate injury to Daulton Varsho. Miroglio is currently hitting .325/.391/.460 good for a .382 wOBA 135 wRC+. Miroglio has increased an already solid .113 Isolated Slugging Percentage last year to .135 this year. The only real negatives Miroglio has had this year is a slightly lower 7.1% walk percentage, down from 8.8% last year, and a jump in K rate from 5% to 13.9% this year. (Fangraphs)(Baseball-Reference)

I contacted Dominic over Instagram, and I asked him to conduct an interview, which he agreed to do. The interview below as been edited for clarity and readability.

Wesley Baier: What your philosophy as a hitter?

Dominic Miroglio: I feel as a hitter it is very important to find what part of the strike zone you hit the best, and be aggressive to pitches that show up in this area, most importantly the fastball. This is something that is very simple in theory, but can be more difficult to put into action. The more you can stick to your approach, the more consistent of a hitter you will be.

Wesley Baier: How do you approach the game defensively as a catcher?

Dominic Miroglio: as a catcher it is very important to take the game one pitch at a time. Jeff Bajenaru has helped me a lot this year on game planning opposing hitters. What to look for, what numbers are important, where their weaknesses are, etc. I feel game calling and receiving are 2 of the most important jobs for a catcher.

Wesley Baier: You’ve had a lot of success as a hitter this year, for instance you lead the cal league in batting average as of yesterday, what do you attribute that success to?

Dominic Miroglio: I’ve been fortunate enough to have several people throughout my career help me with my approach as a hitter, and for that I am very blessed. This year specifically in spring training I worked with Rick Short during spring training on a lower hand position that has helped me get into a better launch position more consistently.

Wesley Baier: What lead you to don the tools of ignorance and become a catcher?

Dominic Miroglio: Ever since I started playing I was always drawn to catching because of how active the position was. I played some other positions growing up, but I always found my way back behind the dish.

Wesley Baier: How did your time at UCLA and the university of San Francisco influence the way you play the game?

Dominic Miroglio: I attribute a lot of my work ethic to my time at USF. They taught me a lot about what It meant to have a routine everyday. That has helped me a lot, especially in professional baseball, since we play every single day. Little things like showing up early, getting your work done to help me have the best chance for success that night.

Wesley Baier: After the hiring of general manager Mike Hazen, the team decided to put more emphasis on pitch framing, how has that played out so far in your time in the Diamondback farm system?

Dominic Miroglio: Pitch framing is something that is stressed on a day to day basis in this organization. It has become a huge part of the game and something that directly affect the outcome of each game. I’ve loved the emphasis put on it and the work I’ve had to put in to get calls to go my way.

Wesley Baier Who were your sports idols growing up? Which major league catchers do you admire most, and which players do you find your style of play more similar to?

Dominic Miroglio: Growing up I was a huge Barry bonds fan. It was so cool to me the way he captured the attention of the whole stadium when he came to hit. Right now my favorite catcher is Yasmani Grandal, because of the way he controls the game from the catcher position, and his framing has become one of the best in the league. I try and incorporate some of the stuff he does into my game.

Wesley Baier: What’s the best advice you’ve been given?

Dominic Miroglio: The best advice I’ve ever been given is to stay on an even keel. Things aren’t always as bad as they seem, and they aren’t always as good as they seem. There are so many ups and downs throughout a minor league season that this has really stuck with me.

Wesley Baier: Who do you attribute your success most to growing up? Who in your life has most influenced your career?

Dominic Miroglio: The number one person I attribute my success to is my dad. He has been through it all with me. I truly admire the positive outlook he has on every single situation I’ve come across on this journey. He has kept me sane and I can’t thank him enough for what he’s done for me.

Wesley Baier: When you head back home to the Bay area, where do you HAVE to stop and go eat?

Dominic Miroglio: A local Bay Area pizza joint called “cybelles pizza” is one of my favorites. We usually order It whenever there is a big sporting event going on, so eating brings back some pretty good memories.

Wesley Baier: What are your non baseball interests?

Dominic Miroglio: this past year I’ve been really trying to get into golf. It’s been a great way for me to spend my free time and get away from the game. I am absolutely horrible, but hoping to slowly but surely change that over time!

Wesley Baier: Baseball is a very superstitious sport... Do you have any weird baseball superstitions, pregame rituals, or weird quirks at the plate?

Dominic Miroglio: probably my biggest ritual is what i do before every at bat. I stare at the right field foul pole until i feel I’m locked in ready to go. I’ve been doing it for a few years.

Wesley Baier: Now for a bunch of quick questions. Favorite food?

Dominic Miroglio: Steak

Wesley Baier: Favorite movie?

Dominic Miroglio: The Godfather

Wesley Baier: Part one or two? I think part two is arguably the better film, but I think part one is more enjoyable and much more memorable.

Dominic Miroglio: Part one.

Wesley Baier: Favorite Tv Show?

Dominic Miroglio: Peaky Blinders

Wesley Baier: Favorite musical artist/band?

Dominic Miroglio: Post Malone

I ended the interview, and thanked Dominic for his time. You can follow Dominic Miroglio on @dundascoemo and you can follow me @cwesleybaier