Getting to know Yankees’ first round pick Ty Hensley

The young hurler clearly has plenty of power, with a fastball in the mid-90s that has touched 97.  Despite that, his power curveball may be his best weapon, rating as a plus pitch.  He had an incredible 111 strikeouts through 55.1 innings this season. He throws hard but his command needs to improve and he is going to need another strong pitch if he wants to start.

Pitching and size are not the only things Hensley brings to the table, however.  He is a switch hitter who actually can do a lot of damage at the plate.   He hit ten homers this season and drove in 42 runs, while picking up the Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year for Oklahoma.  In fact, Hensley’s twitter profile uses a picture of him at the plate instead of pitching. Scouts have noted Hensley’s work ethic and makeup as other positives, in addition to his ability to speak Spanish.  Baseball America has this video of Hensley both on the mound and at (both sides of) the plate.

 

Tamar has written for IIATMS since July 2009, having started off writing game recaps before shifting to the minor leagues. Born in Connecticut and having lived all over the country and in South Korea, Tamar now finds herself "temporarily misplaced" in New Hampshire. Please send help.

16 thoughts on “Getting to know Yankees’ first round pick Ty Hensley

  1. jay_robertson

    Cool – may not work, but a lot more satisfying to see a pick like this, as opposed to, say, Cito. <ducking>

    Now I just hope he signs – tho I can't see anyone picking Ole Miss over the Yankees. just sayin

    • Tamar

      Haha, yeah, Cito has been more than frustrating – though I wouldn't give up on him yet. He is still young and defensively he is very strong. If only he could figure out the hitting piece…

      • jay_robertson

        Don't get me wrong – you know I want (and wish) nothing but the best for Cito – but you have to admit – he wasn't the sexiest pick of the draft.

  2. BrienJackson

    And while we're in need of a place to drop insights, something I didn't think of last night for some reason: Seattle just confirmed that they don't think that Montero is a viable catcher, which should continue to temper our estimations of The Trade.

    • jay_robertson

      missed that. thanks for the tip.

    • chad

      Have the Yankees signaled the same thing about Jeter by drafting a shortstop multiple times during his tenure?

      I realize that shortstops are more likely to be moved to a different position,but it seems simplistic to state that the Mariners are giving up on Montero as a catcher just because they drafted one.

      • There’s a tremendous difference between drafting a high school shortstop at the bottom of the first round, or later, because he’s your favorite player on the board and taking a college player at the position with the third overall pick.

        • chad

          But they also drafted a player who they had loved for a long time, a player who they had a personal connection with (their GM knows the family), and a player at a position where they didn't have a lot of organizational depth.

          Undoubtedly the Mariners have questions as to whether Montero can catch long term, as that's been the biggest question mark about him for a couple of years now. Quite possibly those doubts were a factor in them drafting a player who they already loved.

          They now have someone who might be able to step in in a couple of years if they have decided in the interim that Montero is definitely not a catcher. But to equate that with them stating outright that Montero is not a viable catcher is overly simplistic, and in my opinion incorrect.

          • That’s…a stretch. You don’t usually see teams draft college players in the top three picks for the purpose of having them serve as “operational depth.” You take a somewhat low ceiling college player in that spot because he’s also a fairly safe pick and you expect him to be starting for you fairly quickly.

            Or, put another way, whether Seattle thinks Montero could do it or not, this pick signals that having Montero remain a catcher is not their organizational plan at the moment.

          • ProfRobert

            Isn't it equally plausible that the Mariners took whom they thought was the best player on the board? If he develops as they project, then they have sexy trade bait, or they can trade Montero, who by then will be arbitration-eligible and might be earning more than Seattle wants to pay.

          • BrienJackson

            Best player on the board is a sort of meaningless phrase in baseballl, however, because who that is is going to be determined at least in part by what you're looking for. Do you want high upside? Some cost savings to make signing later picks easier? Someone who's going to have a low floor? Someone who's going to get to the big leagues the fastest? The guy with the best present tools package?

            What the Mariners took was a catcher who profiles to be an above average defensder and a solid, if unspectacular, hitter fairly quickly. You just are not taking that guy with that pick if you're sitting in your war room planning on Jesus Montero being a catcher two years from now.

          • chad

            Of course they'd never take a player that high solely for organizational depth, that's not what I said. But unquestionably it is a consideration (even if at only, say, 5%) when drafting a player, especially at such a specialized position as catcher.

        • michael

          I agree the pick sends a signal about need. Can't you just as easily interpret this as best talent available pick?

  3. Norm

    I was excited by the pick until I read this line "He throws hard but his command needs to improve and he is going to need another strong pitch if he wants to start." Don't we already have a guy like this? Think his name is Hughes or something.

    • Tamar

      I think we have a couple guys like this…

  4. friend

    So, we might be looking at a starting pitcher who plays as designated hitter on days that he doesn't start?

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