Archive for Ty Hensley

Via Jon Heyman, the Rockies were set to take Ty Hensley with the tenth overall pick Monday night, but a chain-of-events landed the right-hander in the Yankees’ lap at the 30th overall pick. The Pirates were set to take prep OF David Dahl with the eighth overall pick, but they instead took Stanford RHP Mark Appel when he slid down the board. When Dahl was still available for Colorado at ten, they went with him over Hensley.

I also remember hearing somewhere — I forget if it was a podcast or the broadcast or something else entirely — that the Rays targeted Hensley for the 25th overall pick but went with Clemson 3B Richie Shaffer when he was surprisingly still on the board. Either way, I’m glad the Yankees were able to nab a big power arm like Hensley and based on his recent comments, it sure sounds like he’s thrilled as well.

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Via Ryan Aber, first round pick Ty Hensley said negotiations with the Yankees will begin immediately and he expects to sign soon. “I’m ready to get this thing started,” said the prep right-hander. “I want to get out and play as soon as possible … My goal is to be there (in the big leagues) by the time I’m 21 years old.”

Slot money for the 30th overall pick is $1.6M and I expect Hensley’s eventual deal to come in relatively close to that amount, plus or minus. As you can see in this ESPN video, the kid looks very excited to have been drafted by New York. Everything you need to know about him is right here. The signing deadline is July 13th this year, moved up thanks to the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

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With their first round selection (#30 overall) in the 2012 draft, the Yankees selected high school right-hander Ty Hensley. He’s only the third high school pitcher they’ve drafted in the true first round (not supplemental first round) over the last 18 years, joining Phil Hughes (2004) and Gerrit Cole (2008). Slot money for this pick is $1.6M.

An Oklahoma kid from Santa Fe High School outside of Oklahoma City, Hensley’s father Mike pitched for three years in the minors after being selected in the second round of the 1988 draft by the Cardinals. Mike was also a long-time pitching coach at Kansas State, so Ty has grown up around the game. Hensley played quarterback for his high school before giving up football to focus on baseball as a senior. He’s committed to Mississippi.

Scouting Report
Oklahoma has a history of producing physically huge pitchers — Josh Johnson, Brad Penny, Braden Looper, and Jamey Wright most recently — and Hensley fits the bill at 6-foot-5 and 220 lbs. He sat in the 92-95 range with his fastball this spring and ran it as high as 97 at times, backing it up with a sharp overhand curve he throws in the upper-70s. His changeup shows promise but like most high schoolers, he hasn’t needed it and the pitch needs work. Hensley has a high leg kick and is deliberate with his delivery, which sometimes leads to command issues. As I mentioned when I first wrote him up as a potential target in March, his makeup and coachability are pluses. He also speaks Spanish, apparently.

It won’t matter as a pro, but I suppose it’s worth mentioning that Hensley is a switch-hitter with some pop in his bat. Ole Miss will allow him to both pitch and hit, but he’s a much better pro prospect on the mound. Here’s his draft video.

The various scouting publications all considered Hensley a back-half of the first round/early-sandwich round talent in their most recent rankings…

  • Kevin Goldstein: 19th best prospect overall and ninth best pitcher (subs. req’d)
  • Baseball America: 23rd best prospect overall and 11th best pitcher
  • 26th best prospect overall and 13th best pitcher
  • Keith Law: 36th best pitcher overall and 19th best pitcher (subs. req’d)

Damon Oppenheimer’s Take
Here’s what the Yankees’ scouting director said in a statement following the announcement of the pick, courtesy of Bryan Hoch

“We’re excited to get a guy with such a high ceiling. He has the ideal body for a high school pitcher, as well as power stuff, and has the ability to be a high-end starter. He’s demonstrated a quality makeup and has shown himself to be a hard worker, which makes him a quality pick for us.”

My Take
Over the last week or two we’ve heard that the Yankees were targeting various prep arms, but Hensley was one of the few names not said to be on their radar. That’s probably not an accident; he was likely high on their board and they didn’t want it to be known. Oppenheimer usually emphasizes polish when it comes to pitching prospects, but this time he leaned towards upside and got a guy with a big fastball and more importantly, an out-pitch breaking ball. The Yankees love their big pitchers and again, Hensley fits right in. There’s a lot to like about this pick and the biggest thing to watch going forward is his command. If Hensley cleans up his delivery and is able to throw strikes consistently, he has a chance to be an above-average workhorse starter who misses bats and eats innings.

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With the 30th pick of tonight’s amateur MLB draft, the Yanks went for the highest ranked player still on the board as they selected right-handed pitcher Ty Hensley in the first round. Hensley, 18, is a 6-foot, 5-inch, 220-pounder out of Santa Fe High School in Edmond, OK, and was 23rd on Baseball America’s top 500 list. In a capsule write-up a few months back, Mike noted Hensley’s mid-90s fastball, a change and a curve. He can push that fastball up to 97.

During his interview on MLB Network after the selection, Hensley spoke about his influences and cited both Roger Clemens and Roy Halladay. He also mentioned his pre-start Chipotle ritual. Kevin Goldstein called the pick “highway robbery,” and the Yanks are high on his future. As a high school senior, Hensley struck out 111 in 55.1 innings and went a perfect 10-0 with a 1.52 ERA. We’ll have much more shortly.

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