I will be running a new interview with one of the best MLB draft prospects 2010 has to offer each Sunday and Wednesday up until June, and you can click here to find an up to date archive of them all.
As always, you can friend me on Facebook to get notice of when the newest interviews are put up, as well as to contact me with any questions or comments you might have.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: I’ve seen your height and weight listed anywhere from 5’11”, 190 lbs to 6’1”, 180 lbs. What’s the truth?
Deshun Dixon: I’d say my true height right now is about 6’0”, and I weigh 193-194 lbs. I don’t where they got the 6’1”, 180 lbs, I’ve never heard that. The 5’11” was pretty true until a couple of weeks ago when I had a couple of people tell me I was getting taller, so I believe I’ve reached 6’0” now. My goal is to get to 200-210 lbs, something like that.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: We know about baseball, but you’ve also made a decent name for yourself as a DB in football. Tell me about that.
Deshun Dixon: Yes sir, but I got moved to quarterback this year. Football was one of my favorite things to do besides baseball, but I just don’t see me playing football for a long time. I’ve always relied on playing baseball because I’ve been playing since I was about six, and football just got brought to my mind so it’s not really a big thing with me.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Have you made a school commitment yet? I’ve read that schools are recruiting you for the gridiron, too - will football play any role in that decision?
Deshun Dixon: No sir, I haven’t committed to anybody yet. Not really, I’m just weighing my options, but if I do go to college and play baseball, I’ll probably try to play football, too.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: You have three older brothers, all of whom committed to Mississippi State, and they’re anywhere from one of the best RBs in school history to a minor league baseball player. How much competition is there in your family?
Deshun Dixon: We’ve got a lot of competition in our family! Everybody in our family thinks they can do everything so we’ve played as many different games as possible and competed, probably until we started bleeding. We’ve always competed a lot, even on video games, and it’s been going on forever. Now since everybody’s gone off to college it’s changed, but back when we were all at home we were always together doing something. It could have been something crazy, but we were always competing at something.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Who is the Madden champ?
Deshun Dixon: I’m probably the Madden champ, but NBA Live, 2K10, and Call of Duty - they’ll probably beat me at those games.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: How much have you thought about the draft?
Deshun Dixon: I know it’s coming up, but I don’t think about it every day. If I’m one of the top players when it’s time, I’ll get drafted, but I don’t think about it every day. I think about progressing every day, doing something productive, and working towards the end of my season – whether I go to college or the draft.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: If the terms were agreeable, would playing professional baseball out of high school be something you were interested in?
Deshun Dixon: Yes, sir.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: When you think about it, what do you picture – what’s your dream?
Deshun Dixon: Right now my favorite dream is me standing in centerfield in an Atlanta Braves jersey, playing in the World Series. The Braves are my favorite team, and I’ve been watching them for a while, so I’m kind of pulling for them to pick me.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: How has Rashun’s experience influenced your path?
Deshun Dixon: He’s been telling me a lot about what he’s been going through. He talks to me about the hard days, long night, long bus rides, and he says it’s just work, work, everyday. You play most days and you’ve got only a little off-time, so it’s an everyday grind.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Hearing how tough it is, does it make you still want to pursue that life?
Deshun Dixon: It makes me want to do it even more, because like I said before, I’m a baseball fanatic and that’s what I want to do. Working that much and that hard is nothing to me – I’d rather do that than be working a regular job. So that’s no problem for me.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: How many teams have you heard from?
Deshun Dixon: I’d say about 15 different teams.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Are the Yankees one of them?
Deshun Dixon: Yes sir, they are one of them.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: You’re one of the rarest things in all of baseball history: a RHB/LHP. How did that come about?
Deshun Dixon: I don’t know, I remember back in little league when I first started at six years old – and it’s probably hard to believe – but I was right-handed back then, both batting and throwing. When I moved up I started throwing left-handed, and I was a switch-hitter until I got to summer leagues when I was around 15.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: How would you describe yourself as a hitter?
Deshun Dixon: I’m an aggressive-type hitter. I draw walks when it’s necessary, but I don’t look to walk, I’m really aggressive. I try to spread the ball around left-center to leftfield. Rightfield isn’t one of my places to hit right now, but I’ll go there, too.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Do you have any power in your game?
Deshun Dixon: Oh yeah, I’ve got a couple of long balls in me. Back when I was in little league I hit a couple that opened peoples’ mouths, so I’ve got a little power in me but I’m not looking to hit the long ball - If it happens it just happens.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Where do you hit in the lineup?
Deshun Dixon: I hit in the three-hole.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Is speed a big part of your game?
Deshun Dixon: Speed is one of my big things. Everybody in my family was fast, and we were racing all the time so that got me a little faster, but base-stealing is a big part of my game. I didn’t get to steal too many bases this year because my couch wasn’t about stealing bases, but I definitely like stealing bases.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Do you know what you run your 60 in?
Deshun Dixon: I think I got clocked at 6.61 in Georgia this summer.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: What is your personality on the field?
Deshun Dixon: I’m the kind of guy that gets hyped up and jumps around because I like to have fun when I’m out there; it’s not all serious, you can have a little fun with it. I’ll be serious but at the same time I’ll be the one jumping around, getting the team crunked up. That’s probably me - the crazy one in the dugout cracking jokes and stuff.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: On the mound, what does your repertoire look like?
Deshun Dixon: My fastball tops out at, I’d say, 93 MPH. I have a two-seamer and a four-seamer, the two-seamer is about 89-91 MPH and gets a lot of movement. I have a slow curve and a fast curve, the fast curve is about 75 MPH, and the slow curve is about 60 MPH. I have a changeup that’s about 75 MPH, and I’ve been working on a cutter this year.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: What do you prefer: playing the field or pitching?
Deshun Dixon: I see myself playing centerfield and being an everyday player, but if they want me to pitch then I’ll do that, too. It really doesn’t matter to me, but I see myself as an everyday player in centerfield.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Who was your favorite Brave growing up? Who are the players that you look up to in terms of their skills or the way they play?
Deshun Dixon: I’d say it was Chipper Jones, he’s a good team player, a good hitter, so I’d say I liked him a little bit. As a hitter I see myself as a Jose Reyes type hitter, I like the way he swings the bat and controls himself, he can spray the ball or hit for power. As a defender in centerfield I’d say Andruw Jones – I like the way he played and controlled center.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Have you gotten any comparisons from scouts?
Deshun Dixon: I had a Phillies scout tell me that I was a Rickey Henderson type player to him, but he’s the only one that said that to me.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: If you could steal one skill from a guy in your class, whose would it be?
Deshun Dixon: It would probably be from Reggie Golden from Alabama. I played with him in California last summer, and he’s got one of the best arms I’ve seen, so I’d take his arm.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: What was the UA game at Wrigley like for you?
Deshun Dixon: Oh it was a great experience. We had Cal Ripken come in and talk to us about the fundamentals of hitting in the cage, Doug Glanville taught us some outfield skills, and it was just a good experience. There was a lot of rain for the practices and stuff, but when the sun finally came out for gametime it felt like a dream come true.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: What’s the biggest thing you want to focus on going into this season?
Deshun Dixon: I probably want to focus more on being an outspoken leader, because in past years I’ve always been playing with my brothers and they were usually the leaders and I’d follow what they said. Last year I didn’t have to be a leader because we had so many seniors, but I’ll probably take the leadership role to heart this year and help a couple of these young guys.
Kevin Levine-Flandrup: Finally, what’s this whole process like for you?
Deshun Dixon: It’s fun for me. I kind of want it to hurry up and just get to it, but I’m also enjoying my time in high school right now. When it finally comes it will be one of those things that I’ve been looking forward to since I was young and started watching sports, but right now I’m just looking around and taking it all in. I think about it everyday, thinking about all the right things I have to do to get to the actual moment, but it’s fun for me.