MMN Exclusive Interview with Binghamton Mets Second Baseman Daniel Muno

By David Conde

September 12, 2013 2 Comments

Daniel Muno

The Binghamton Mets had a memorable 2013 season. They finished at 86-55 in the regular season, which was the best record in the organizations twenty-two year history.  The B-Mets won their division and entered the post season for the first time since 2004.  The results of their playoff run was not what they expected, but overall they had a great season and every person that’s a part of their organization should hold their heads up high and be very proud for all that they accomplished this year.

One of the players that stood out to me while following the B-Mets was second baseman, Daniel Muno.  Daniel and I actually connected through Twitter when he participated in the Disability Dream & Do Baseball Camp back on August 17th with his teammates.  Daniel was very excited to be involved in such a great event and was moved by it as well.

 

@DAConde24 it was an amazing life changing experience. I had a great time and will remember it the rest of my life

—     Danny muno (@Munz16) August 18, 2013 

Daniel - Muno

Daniel has played well in his pro career with the Mets. He has continued to progress and proven to be a great commodity in an organization that is starting to show how ripe they are in talent. He played a pivotal role at second base and as the lead-off man for the B-Mets this past season; he set the table for the rest of their hitters. Daniel led the Eastern League with 86 runs, was third with 92 walks, and sixth with a .384 OBP.

Daniel started his pro career with the Brooklyn Cyclones back in 2011, and in 59 games he batted .355 with a .466 OBP and was promoted to St. Lucie in 2012 with the hopes hat he would continue with his development. But in May of 2012, Daniel was suspended for testing positive for Performance Enhancing Drugs and was banned for 50 games.  He returned to the St. Lucie lineup and in 81 games he batted .280 with a .387 OBP. Daniel also added speed to his game and swiped 19 bases. The Mets moved him up to Binghamton this past season and Daniel was part of a great group of players that made history.

Looking back at his brief pro career, Daniel has shown much promise even though he had a detour in his journey. What I have learned in my life is that everyone makes mistakes and what you do with those mistakes is what determines the type of person you become.  In my opinion, what he did was wrong and it just delayed his road to the big stage, but his resolve to come back, work harder and continue to perform and compete allows me to respect him more as a man than just a player.

I caught up with Daniel via Twitter and requested to chat with him about his life in baseball and off the field.  Daniel was gracious enough to grant me access into his world.

David – Daniel, thank you for taking the time to answer some questions for me and our writers. I know the Mets fans will appreciate getting to know you through your responses, as much as they have appreciated the hard work you have put out on the field.

David - Is there anything about you that the Mets fans do not know that you would like to share with them? Your interests, anything outside of baseball?

Daniel – I love the beach and anything that has to do with it. I love to surf.

David –  Who was your favorite player growing up and did you try to model yourself after him in any way?

Daniel – Growing up I loved to watch Nomar Garciaparra because he played the game hard and was a great hitter.

David  -  In 2008 you were part of the first Fresno State Baseball team to win the College World Series, can you describe the feeling of playing in the biggest game in your school’s history and actually winning it?

Daniel –  2008 will go down as one of the best moments in my life. I was apart of a team that no one expected to win the College World Series. We were the lowest seeded team to ever win the College World Series. We were a true underdog story. It was an amazing experience playing in front of 30,000 fans in Rosenblatt Stadium.

David – You had many accomplishments in college, from leading the league in walks in 2008, to breaking the school’s record for career walks and becoming the first Bull Dog to hit for the cycle; what do you feel contributed to your patience at the plate in college and do you feel it has helped you in pro ball?

Daniel – The person that helped me develop my approach at the plate in college was our head coach Mike Batesole. He taught me how to be patient and how to see pitches for the rest of the team. Being a patient hitter has definitely helped me in pro ball.

David –  You were drafted by the Mets in the 8th round of the 2011 Draft out of school; where were you when you received the news? Can you describe what was going through your mind and who was the first person you called?

Daniel – I was with my dad and grandpa at my grandpa’s house and I was watching on the computer and saw my name come up and I was extremely excited and I called my mom first to tell her because she wasn’t there.

David – While in college was there any organization you hoped would draft you?  Did you expect the Mets to be that team? 

Daniel – In college I was just hoping one team drafted me and I had a feeling the Mets were going to draft me because I was in contact with the now scouting director Doug Thurman. Also, I have to give thanks to Doug Thurman for seeing what he saw in me.

David – You played your first season of pro ball with the Brooklyn Cyclones and played well. Did you see any difference with going from College Baseball to Pro Baseball, and if so what stood out?

Daniel – The main difference was that everyone was good and in college there were maybe 5 or 6 guys on a team that were good.

David – You have played second base, shortstop, and some third base in your pro ball career, and even though you have spent the most of the time at second base, which position do you feel most comfortable?

Daniel – I feel I can play all three very well and I feel comfortable at all three.

David – What teammate has impressed you the most this season, and who should Mets fans be most excited about seeing in the future?

DanielNoah Syndergaard is going to be the real deal and it was very fun to watch him throw every time he pitched and also is very great teammate and kid.

David – Is there a Met manager or coach who has made an impact in your approach to the game and helped elevate your performance?

Daniel – When I first got to Brooklyn I loved learning and playing for Rich Donnelly; he is a great coach and knows how to get the best out every kid he coaches. Hitting-wise, I learned a lot from our hitting coach Louie Natera in Binghamton this season.

David – Playing with the B-Mets this year, you were able to experience playoff baseball in pro ball, how does that compare to playoff baseball in College and which was most exciting for you?

Daniel – Well anytime your a part of playoff baseball it is exciting. I have been lucky enough to be apart of the playoffs every year in pro ball and college. The atmosphere is the same from college to pro ball except for my freshman year when I was in the World Series we had about 30,000 more fans.

David – What was the chemistry like in the B-Mets clubhouse while competing for a playoff spot?

Daniel – We had a great group of guys in Binghamton this year and chemistry between the team was great.

David – You have had success in your career in the minors; do you feel like you are on track with the goals you set for yourself? If so, what are you expecting for 2014?

Daniel – In 2014, I am just going to keep trying to do what I have been doing. Also just going to keep trying to help my team win whatever team I may be on.

A Few Questions from a Couple our Staff Writers

Staff Writers -  Let’s look back to last season with St. Lucie; it’s well known that you tested positive for PED’s and were suspended for 50 games, how did you deal with it, what lessons did you learn, and has it changed you as a player? Does it motivate you to go out there and prove yourself?

Daniel – Last year was a learning experience for me and it was tough to go through but ultimately it has made me a better person in life and baseball.

Staff Writers – There were plenty of special moments in Binghamton this year…what was your favorite and why?

 Daniel – Setting the record for most wins and making it to playoffs. Just because I love to win.

Staff Writers -  Moving forward, what stands between you and the big leagues? What do you specifically need to work on as a player, and improve upon, in order to be ready to compete on the big stage?

Daniel – There is nothing that stands between me and the big leagues. I just have to keep getting better and Lord willing things will work out.

Staff Writers – How will you prepare over the winter, can you describe your workout regimen?

Daniel – I train very hard in the off-season and I am very detail oriented in my workouts and follow the Mets off season training program.

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I would like to thank Daniel Muno for allowing me the opportunity to interview him and giving the Mets fans a better insight into who he is and what we will have to look forward to with his continuing and exciting career.  I wish Daniel much success and will continue to root for him to make his major league debut in the near future. Great things are happening in the Mets farm system and the future continues to look bright.

(Photo courtesy of Dave Clark Foundation and milb.com)

  • elias conde

    At this point the Mets do not have a real second baseman and Muno might be in their future. Murphy is a good hitter but lacks in the defense part of the game. Right now the Mets do not have a good on base lead off batter and Muno could be the answer. He didn’t really answer the Peds question put forward by the Staff writers but I would hope that the 50 game suspension was a wake up call for him. He has to realize that he is fortunate to be one of the few who plays a game that we all love and that these type of mistakes could ruin his career. He can learn a lesson from ARod who even though he has a contract that will pay him over $30 million dollars a year until he is at least 44 years old, he decided he wanted to cheat because he has ego problems, which will keep him out of the Hall Of Fame. He wanted to be the best and all it did was make him an outcast within the baseball family. All Muno has to do is play hard, lead a clean and good life and the fans will support him. He can make a good living in baseball just doing the right things.

    One thing about David’s post’s, they are providing us with information on our future stars that we were unaware of. By the time they come up to the show we will have a better perspective of what type of people they are.

  • joe castiglione

    Danny Muno is a real quality guy he showed it in college where he volunteered for every charity event available, especially interested in special needs kids. I’ve Been following his career thru college and pro-ball and have found out he comes from a real sports family. His father Kevin played on a National Championship Football team at Notre Dame and went on to play professional baseball for the Brewers and Astros. His Mother Anne was a world class Triathlete competing in the Iron Man 3 times. His brother was an All Conference center fielder for the University of San Diego, his cousin Ryan is the Third Baseman for San Diego State coach, Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn and Cousin J. J. will be a starting infielder at U C Santa Barbara in 2014. His High School Career included a State Championship for Loyola High of Los Angeles. His cousin Alyse is an outstanding Division 1 Volleyball player at Cal State Fullerton and anther cousin Susanah, an all state player at Notre Dame H S, has just accepted a full scholarship from UCLA for Volleyball. Quite a family.

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