Tampa Bay has become baseball’s best at developing young pitching talent during the last decade.
On Thursday, the Rays added Blue Valley graduate Ryne Stanek to its stable, selecting the hard-throwing right-hander with the 29th overall pick in the first round of the First-Year Player Draft.
“I think Tampa Bay is going to be a great place for him,” Stanek’s high school coach Matt Ortman said. “They continue to bring along good, young pitching, and I think he’s got a shot to be one of the next guys.”
Stanek, now a junior at Arkansas, was selected in the third round of the 2010 draft by the Seattle Mariners, but he elected to join the Razorbacks instead of signing at that time.
It’s a decision that appears to have paid off handsomely. The pool amount for the 29th pick is $1,758, 300.
“I figured that going to college, especially a school like Arkansas, he would continue to get bigger and add a couple miles per hour,” Ortman said. “Just competing at the SEC level, I knew he had a chance to develop into a pretty good pitcher.”
Stanek was The Star’s All-Metro baseball player of the year in 2010 after leading the Tigers to a Kansas Class 6A state championship.
“We’ve had some good players come through here lately, and he’s definitely been one of the best, if not the best,” Ortman said. “It kind of puts the school on the map just a little bit. It’s exciting to see a former player go that high in the draft.”
Stanek, a second-team All-American, went 10-2 with a 1.39 ERA, striking out 79 and allowing 72 hits and 41 walks in 971/3 innings last season.
During his Arkansas career, Stanek is 22-8 with a 2.55 ERA and one save. Opponents have hit .216 against him during the last three seasons.