- Full name Keaton Hayenga
- Born 07/10/1988 in Sammamish, WA
- Profile Ht.: 6'4" / Wt.: 190 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Eastlake
Drafted in the 31st round (936th overall) by the Kansas City Royals in 2007 (signed for $300,000).
View Draft ReportHayenga had shown fastball velocity up to 92-93 mph from a projectable, athletic frame. He was an all-state basketball player as well as baseball player, though he signed to play baseball at Washington State. He's considered the school's most important recruit in years, and because of his shoulder injury has a chance to make it to Pullman.
Organization Prospect Rankings
The Royals paid Hayenga $300,000 as a 31st-round pick in 2007, then waited nearly two years to see him in a real game. He missed his first season and a half recovering from a torn labrum he sustained in high school. He showed flashes of being the same pitcher he was before the injury when he returned. Hayenga has the long arms and lanky frame to get good downward angle on his pitches and flashed a plus fastball, but he mostly pitched at 89-91 mph. During instructional league in 2008 and extended spring training in 2009, he had flashed a 92-94 mph fastball. His 12-to-6 curveball was also inconsistent, but it's a plus pitch with good depth when he snaps it off well. He throws a developing changeup. Now he just needs to get stronger and put the shoulder surgery behind him. He made every scheduled start last year, but he'll need to show he can maintain his best stuff more consistently in his second season back. A fine basketball player in high school, he has excellent athleticism, plus the feel and command scouts look for in a starting pitcher. If Hayenga gains just a tick more consistent velocity, he could have a breakout season in 2010. He should reach low Class A at some point this season.
The Royals believed enough in Hayenga to give him a $300,000 bonus in 2007 despite the fact that he was recovering from a torn labrum. He suffered the shoulder injury when he dove into a base in high school and jammed his shoulder. He has yet to throw a pitch in an official game, but Kansas City got the first glimpse of what it paid for during instructional league when his fastball sat at 92-94 mph in his first outing. A prep basketball standout, Hayenga is an above-average athlete with a relatively clean and repeatable delivery. The Royals had him focus on throwing mainly fastballs and changeups in instructs, but he had a 12-to-6 curveball with depth before he got hurt. He showed solid command in his return to the mound in instructional league. Club officials have been impressed with Hayenga's dedication to rehabbing his shoulder and think they landed a steal in the 31st round. It's unlikely that Hayenga will break camp with a full-season club in 2009, though he could head to low Class A after a stint in extended spring training.
Hayenga was considered among the top high school pitchers in Washington before tearing his labrum sliding into third base last spring. Washington State still considered him one of its most important signings in years, but the Royals went well above the slot recommendation for picks after the fifth round with a $300,000 bonus to lure him away from college. A good athlete who led his high school basketball team in scoring and rebounding, Hayenga has a projectable body and was considered an early-round pick before the injury. He throws a lively 88- 92 mph fastball and mixes in an average sweeping curve with good deception and late bite that could develop into a plus pitch. His changeup is a work in progress. The Royals have been impressed with his makeup and dedication to his offseason rehab program and he'll likely make his pro debut in short-season ball.