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Q&A With Gonzaga Commit Payton Knowles


By: Diego Solares
Staff Writer, Associate Scout

Today we’ll be shining some light on MIF Payton Knowles (Peninsula), who’s a left-handed hitting Gonzaga commit ranked inside the top-35 prospects in the Washington 2023 class. We last saw him at the Future Games Trials in July, where he kicked his workout off by running the event’s fastest 60-yard dash at 6.89 seconds. He also took an all-around impressive round of BP, working on the barrel throughout (88.5 mph average exit velocity) and flashing advanced raw power to the pull-side with a 346 peak batted distance, too. Perhaps his biggest asset at the moment is his glove, as Knowles showed advanced infield actions throughout his workout. His athletic feet, lateral range, and smooth, sure-handed actions equate to a future on the infield dirt.

We recently had the opportunity to chat with Knowles about his commitment to Gonzaga, including what the recruiting process looked like for him amongst other topics - all of which can be found below.

PAYTON KNOWLES 

Payton Knowles

Class of 2023 / SS

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2023
  • Primary Position: SS
    Secondary Position: 2B
  • High School: Peninsula
    State: WA
  • Summer Team: Narrows BBC
  • Height: 6-0
    Weight: 175lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/R


OUR Q&A

PBR: What were your expectations about the recruiting process? What were you looking for out of a college program to continue your baseball career at?

Knowles: I was looking for a place that valued it’s players and wanted to get them to the next level. I was looking to go somewhere that wanted to win a national championship as bad as I do.

P: Did location or distance from home play a factor in your decision?

K: No.

P: When did the recruiting process really start to heat up for you? Where did the school you committed to first see you play?

K: The recruiting process started to heat up in the spring of my sophomore year. Gonzaga first saw me at their own tournament on their field.

P: What do you like most about the program you chose, and what were the key factors in making your decision?

K: I really enjoyed how well of a bond the players have with each other, they have no “me” guys, but instead are all in for the same reason. I also liked how well of a relationship the coaches have together.

P: What other schools were on your short list before you made your final decision?

K: UCLA, Tulane, Washington State.

P: Who is the best player you have faced in your state? What about them makes for a tough opponent? 

K: RHP Michael Getzinger (Moses Lake; Gonzaga commit) - he is a top notch right-handed pitcher, with a gross off-speed. He always knows exactly how to pitch me.

P: At what point in your career did you realize you were a college-caliber player and became serious about taking your game to the next level?

K: I’ve always believed it was very achievable for me, no matter how overlooked I felt which drove me to work harder to achieve my goal.

P: What advice would you give to young baseball players striving to get where you are?

K: Just don’t stop working, there’s always another rep of something to be done. Never be satisfied with where you're at. Use doubt as motivation and let it fuel your fire.

P: What is the most memorable moment in your baseball career to this point?

K: The most memorable moment in my career thus far has been winning the Seattle Premier League championship with the best team that I’m happy to call family.

P: Preview your high school team's season for us. How do you feel your team will be?

K: I have confidence that if we come together and really play for a reason bigger than ourselves we will be a dangerous squad.

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