Photo by: Cristina Byrne-Sternberg/Rocket City Trash Pandas
By Chuck Richter, AngelsWin.com
October 26th, 2022
The Angels 2019 second round 2B/SS was coming off a promising 2021 season in Low-A ball where he hit .267/.388/.459, with 4 HR and swiped 22 bases across 47 games. The plate discipline which led to a .388 OBP combined with speed on the bases excited the Angels and their fans with the hope of solidifying a void at the leadoff spot with the big league club. The showing skyrocketed Paris to the Angels top-5 prospects range heading into the 2022 season.
While Paris figured things out and went on an incredible run to end the season demonstrating 5-tools over the final 8-weeks of the season, it didn't start off well for the talented middle infielder. Paris hit .182 in April, .175 in May and .193 in June. Something changed in July as Paris showed the same type of output he demonstrated in a shortened 2021 campaign and then went on fire in August, slashing .345/.472/.672 with 12 RBI in 16 games.
Kyren Paris finished off the season in fine fashion, slashing .354/.475/.677 with six homers and seven steals over the final 30 days of the season.
In our interview Paris (below) we talked about his season, the type of player he is, who he models his game after and what were some of his finest memories in his professional career... among many other questions, both baseball and non-baseball related.
Before we get to the interview here's a look back at draft day and some of Paris' finest moments in his professional career.
The once all-star Angels broadcasting crew of @VictorRojas & Mark Gubicza had Kyren Paris in the booth following signing with the Angels in 2019. Here's that interaction! Have we mentioned we miss Victor Rojas yet?
As you can tell, Paris shows a ton of humility and reminds me a lot of a young Garret Anderson in how he carries himself.
When Paris was promoted to Double-A to be a part of the Trash Pandas playoff stretch he started off with a bang. In his first game he went 2-3 with a walk, three RBI and stolen base. He also made a nice play ranging to his right to steal a would be hit. Paris did it all with the Trash Pandas offensively and defensively. He slashed .359/.510/.641 with 3 HR and stole 5 bases over 14 games in Double-A.
So with all of that out of the way, without further ado here is our interview with Kyren Paris. We believe he's going to force his way onto MLB's top 100 prospects list at some point in 2023. If the Angels let him cook in the minors until he's ready, he's going to have a bright future in the big leagues.
AngelsWin.com: It’s Chuck Richter, with AngelsWin.com. I'm here with Kyren Paris. Kyren, how’re you doing?
Kyren Paris: I’m doing great. How about yourself?
AngelsWin.com: Good. Real quick. What’s it been like to get promoted late in the season to this Trash Panda team that’s now going to the playoffs?
Kyren Paris: Oh, man. It was a true blessing just to be here around the guys. Like, the chemistry here and the coaches, to the fans, to the players, it’s been unreal.
AngelsWin.com: That’s awesome. Has anybody, kind of, taken you under their wing since you’re, kind of, the new guy on the team? Or…
Kyren Paris: I’ve known a lot of the guys throughout the years. So, Jeremiah Jackson, Adams, Maitan, Soto, I've played with a lot of these guys, and then, yeah. So, just coming in; we already have that chemistry; I know a lot of the guys, and we just gel together really well.
AngelsWin.com: Yeah. What will Angel fans come to know about you, the player and the person?
Kyren Paris: Just a hard worker, humble, just love to have fun, lots of fun.
AngelsWin.com: Awesome. Hey, so, I noticed, like, the first three months of the season for you in Tri-Cities were a little rough. But something clicked in July, and you’ve just been on fire ever since. What changed, or what happened?
Kyren Paris: Really just sticking to my process and sticking to my plan every day. I want to give a huge thanks to Jack Howell, our manager. He talked about just going out every day, and despite how well you do or how bad you do, just show up the next day and keep going. And really, that’s what I did, and eventually, started having success and never looked back.
AngelsWin.com: That’s great. What do you take most pride in your game: hitting, defense, baserunning?
Kyren Paris: I feel like to win, it takes all-around. So, if one aspect of your game is lacking—I mean, I try to work on it every day just to make sure everything’s up to par. Because, as a collective group, you’ve got to be there every day on both sides of the ball.
AngelsWin.com: Yeah. Are you left to, like, your own devices in terms of workout, diet, things you need to work on offensively, defensively? Or does the organization, kind of, have a plan for you?
Kyren Paris: The organization definitely has a plan. They focus a lot on the process, and they talk to us a lot. And wherever we go, we need to improve; we’re not here for ourself. And it helps a lot.
AngelsWin.com: Who’s impressed the most so far, either a teammate here, in High-A, with Tri-Cities, just in your journey here this season?
Kyren Paris: Man—
AngelsWin.com: And it could be a teammate or an opposing player?
Kyren Paris: That’s a tough question.
AngelsWin.com: You got a loaded clubhouse—
Kyren Paris: Yeah, we have a—
AngelsWin.com: —so that’s a tough question. [laugh]
Kyren Paris: —we have loaded clubhouse, man. But, I mean, I just look around and see these guys, the way they go about it. I can’t specifically say one person; just the whole team. The way everyone is professional and goes about it is truly unbelievable.
AngelsWin.com: Yeah. What do you think your best game was to date? And you can go back to high school, professional ball, to this point.
Kyren Paris: I would probably say the one I had the most fun was my debut here. Being able to hit the three-run homerun and tie the game, and we came back and won. That was something special, and I’ll truly remember that for a long time.
AngelsWin.com: That’s great. Who were some of your favorite players growing up, and what was your favorite team?
Kyren Paris: I would say my favorite team was the Oakland A’s. I grew up in the Bay Area, upper Bay Area, so grew up watching the Oakland A’s. But my favorite players—I want to say—Rickey Henderson—definitely one of my favorites; I love stealing bases. Jeter, just all-around, just—he’s the captain. So, I would say those are my top two.
AngelsWin.com: Speaking of stealing bases, you and Jordyn Adams—who I spoke with last time—you guys are tied for the most stolen bases [laugh] on the team—
Kyren Paris: Yes, we are. We are.
AngelsWin.com: —33. That’s awesome. You guys talking to each either, like, “Hey, I’m going to finish this season with more stolen bases than you.”?
Kyren Paris: Not really. We actually team up together—
AngelsWin.com: [laugh] There you go.
Kyren Paris: —We have a few double steals this season. So—
AngelsWin.com: That’s awesome.
Kyren Paris: —whenever we’re both on base, we’re looking at taking extra bases for sure.
AngelsWin.com: There you go. Rickey Henderson was my favorite player growing up, too. Let me ask you this: when you make it to the big leagues, what’s going to be your walk-up music?
Kyren Paris: I’ve been using Gunna, who’s a rapper that I like. I’ve been using him the whole season. So—
AngelsWin.com: There you go; stick with it.
Kyren Paris: —it’s been going well, so I’m going to stick with that.
AngelsWin.com: There you go; there you go. Okay, I know you’ve got to get. Lighter side, favorite movie?
Kyren Paris: Favorite movie. Rookie of the Year.
AngelsWin.com: Rookie of the Year, awesome. Favorite song or artist?
Kyren Paris: Favorite song or artist. I’ll say, Travis Scott.
AngelsWin.com: Okay. Okay. Favorite video game?
Kyren Paris: Video game, Fortnite, for sure.
AngelsWin.com: Okay. [laugh] What’s a perfect day look like for you away from baseball?
Kyren Paris: I would say just relaxing; maybe, going to the beach. Being from California, I love the beach. So, a beach day, you can never go wrong with that.
AngelsWin.com: You’re going to be in southern California; make the big leagues; that’s nice.
Kyren Paris: That’ll be nice for sure.
AngelsWin.com: I don’t know if you’ve thought this far ahead, but when you’re done playing baseball, what do you envision as your next career?
Kyren Paris: Maybe being on MLB Network—
AngelsWin.com: There you go.
Kyren Paris: —I like looking at those guys and being an analyst, maybe. I like talking in front of the camera and just analyzing and learning more about the game. So, that might be a new adventure for me after baseball.
AngelsWin.com: Awesome. Kyren, thank you so much for your time today—
Kyren Paris: No problem.
AngelsWin.com: —Best of luck this year.