Yankees select right-hander Ty Hensley with 30th pick in MLB Draft
By Bryan Hoch / MLB.com
NEW YORK – The Yankees selected right-hander Ty Hensley with their first-round pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, taking the Santa Fe (Oklahoma) High School product with the 30th overall selection on Monday.
Hensley, 18, was 10-0 with a 1.52 ERA for his high school squad, racking up 111 strikeouts in just 55 1/3 innings. The 6-foot-4, 220-pound hurler is said to top out at 94 mph, with his best pitch being a hard curveball.
New York’s next selections will come in the second round on Tuesday, in which the Yankees will make the 84th and 89th overall picks.
With the Yankees enjoying the evening off following a nine-game road trip, ace left-hander CC Sabathia was on hand for the Draft in Secaucus, N.J., where the proceedings were televised live on the MLB Network.
Sabathia got Hensley’s information from the Yankees’ war room in Tampa, Fla., where vice president of amateur scouting Damon Oppenheimer and his staff have full control of the selection process.
The Yankees have re-emphasized the Draft in recent years, with general manager Brian Cashman calling it “vital” to the club’s long-term needs. Hensley fits that mold; he was recently named as the Gatorade Oklahoma Baseball Player of the Year after his dominant high school campaign.
New York did not have a first-round selection in the 2011 Draft, having lost the 31st overall pick to the Rays as compensation for signing reliever Rafael Soriano. They picked infielder Dante Bichette with their first choice last year.
“Because we’ve had as much success as we’ve had on a regular basis, we’re always picking at the back end,” Cashman said in advance of the Draft. “It’s difficult. There’s a lot of waiting, and it puts us at the back of the boat in every round, but the philosophy is the same no matter what, which is to take the best player on the board.”
That player, in the Yankees’ estimation, was Hensley. His father, Mike, played in the St. Louis Cardinals’ Minor League system from 1988 to 1990 before beginning a second career as a pitching coach at Kansas State University.
MLB.com will provide exclusive coverage of Day 2 and 3, featuring a live pick-by-pick stream, expert commentary and Draft Tracker, a live interactive application that includes a searchable database of Draft-eligible players.
This is the second time that the Yankees have owned the 30th overall selection in the Draft. The other came in 2007, when New York selected right-hander Andrew Brackman from North Carolina State University. Brackman pitched in three games for the Yankees last season and is currently in the Reds’ farm system.