Elliot Soto (PHOTO/CREIGHTON UNIVERSITY)
Elliot Soto is a defense-first shortstop from Creighton University whom the Cubs selected in the 15th round of the 2010 MLB Draft this week. Soto, 20, finished second on his team with a .297 batting average and hit three home runs, 10 doubles, four triples and 28 RBI in 51 games for the Bluejays his junior year this past season.
Q: Were you happy with the way your season ended up?
A: I’m not happy, because we didn’t go to a regional, but it was OK. It could have been worse and could have been better. I’m not really happy (from an individual standpoint) because I always feel I could do better. I set the bar high for myself.
Q: What kind of hitter would you classify yourself as?
A: I just try to put the ball in play and move the runners. At Creighton, I was usually a No. 2-hitter, but I ended up batting leadoff for a while. I tried to get on base and that was my whole approach. In the two hole, though, Robbie Knight was so good that I was usually just trying to get him over. That was pretty much my whole approach. I have a contact swing and I definitely feel like I could hit (gap to gap), but doubles to me aren’t really power; they’re more (about) placement.
Q: Is speed something you try and utilize? You didn’t have a lot of stolen bases, but you did swipe nine of 10 bags this season.
A: Being at Creighton, our coach’s style was never to steal. So even if he had guys that could do it -- and some of our guys had pretty good percentages -- he still liked to play more of a conservative style and wasn’t too big on stolen bases. There were times when I wanted to be aggressive and wanted to say, ‘C’mon, give me a steal sign.’ But that just didn’t play into our coach’s game.
Q: Is there anybody at the big league level right now that you could compare yourself to?
A: It’s hard for me to compare myself to somebody now a day. I would compare myself to somebody like an Omar Vizquel or an Ozzie Smith that gets it done defensively and are also going to give you a little bit of offense. I would say that I’m someone who can play defense and hit a little bit.
Q: Hailing from Algonquin as you do, have you always been a Cubs fan?
A: I am a diehard Cubs fan. My mom is crazy about the Cubs, so it’s pretty unreal. This really is a dream come true for me. … (Off the field) I’m kind of a boring guy who doesn’t really do much. I hang out with friends and play some video games. I always go to the movies, but it’s nothing too crazy. I don’t really have that one hobby everyone else does.