Yankees MLB Draft 2017: Yankees select RHP Trevor Stephan from Arkansas with the 92nd pick of the third round
The Yankees continue their trend of drafting pitchers in this year’s draft as with their third round pick they have selected RHP Trevor Stephan out of Arkansas. The 6’4 RHP was ranked as the 87th best draft prospect by MLB.com and features one of the better fastballs in the 2017 draft class.
Stephan played first base at Magnolia West High School in Texas, but elected to pursue pitching at Hill Junior College in Texas. He struggled his freshman year in college with control of his pitches, but put it together in his sophomore year posting an 8-1 record with a 2.88 ERA at Hill and, as a result, was drafted in the 2016 MLB Draft by the Boston Red Sox, in the 18th round. He decided to not go pro in 2016 and transferred to Arkansas to further his development.
In 2017, he led the Arkansas Razorbacks with a 2.87 ERA, which was tenth in the SEC. In a team high 91 innings, he struck out 120 batters, which was the fifth highest in school history. He threw one complete-game shutout against Tennessee where he allowed one hit and struck out 11 Volunteers. On March 10, he took a perfect game against Rhode Island into the eighth inning and struck out 13 batters in that game, which was the most in a single game for the SEC last season.
Stephan touched 97 mph in fall throwing sessions and has consistently sat in the low to mid 90’s in the spring. His fastball has explosive late life, due to a deceptive across the body delivery. His secondary pitches are his biggest concern. He stopped throwing his curveball in favor of a cutter that has potential to be a solid number two pitch. His changeup is almost never thrown and isn’t very developed.
His mechanics and pitch arsenal may not translate to starting every fifth day in pro ball, but his fastball command is excellent to both sides of the plate, and he could blossom into a dominant late inning arm that relies primarily on his fastball.
Similar to their previous two picks, the Yankees drafted Stephan due to his potential and high upside. He was completely dominant at times in the 2017 college season and has put up better numbers every season since his freshman year at Hill.
The Yankees are stacked with position players in their farm system and while their pitching prospects aren’t pushovers, the Yankees have made it clear that they want their top picks to be pitchers with high ceilings to balance the farm system and better prepare the franchise for the future.
Article by: Ryan Thoms