Trevor Lane was the New York Yankees last selection on Day 2 of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Lane was selected by Vice President of Domestic Amateur Scouting, Damon Oppenheimer, with the 308th overall selection in the 10th round. Trevor spent his freshman season at Campbell University and his sophomore season at Lower Columbia Community College, before transferring to the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC).
The North Bend, Washington native appeared in 13 games (10 starts) for the Flames in his junior year. Lane pitched to a 6-3 record, 3.92 earned run average in 66.2 innings pitched. He finished the season with the teams second highest strikeout total (52).
In his senior season, Lane went 8-5 with a 1.41 earned run average, and collected 90 strikeouts in 2016. He led all UIC pitchers in appearances (26), wins (8), strikeouts (90), and saves (5). Trevor led the Horizon League with a .169 opponent batting average and was named as the league’s Relief Pitcher of the Year. His strong 2016 performance also ranked 5th best in the NCAA in ERA, and hits per 9 innings pitched. Lane ranked 13th in strikeouts per 9 innings pitched as well.
Q: Congratulations on being selected by the New York Yankees on Day 2 of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. What an amazing accomplishment. How did you initially find out that the Yankees were taking you with their 10th round selection?
“A: At first, my advisor let me know around the 6th or 7th round that the Yankees were interested in selecting me. I think when the 9th round came around, he said that the Yankees just let him know that they are thinking about selecting me in the 10th. In the 10th round, I was initially thinking that I was going to get called. I knew the Yankees were up to pick, but I wasn’t getting a call, so I didn’t think that I was going to be chosen. All of a sudden my name popped up on the screen and I went nuts, just jumping around and yelling. It was a pretty good feeling, it was awesome. ”
Q: With such a historic and storied franchise selecting you today, what is your reaction to the Yankees drafting you?
“A: It’s a lot to take in. People get drafted all the time, but getting drafted by an organization such as the Yankees is truly special. I feel honored to be a part of the organization and look forward to grinding through the minor leagues and hopefully pitching for the Yankees one day. It’s really exciting, I probably wouldn’t want to play for any other team, honestly. Being from Seattle, I have always been a Mariner fan, but it’s not going to take much to be a Yankees fan now.”
Q: Prior to the draft, what where your communications with the New York Yankees Scouting Department?
“A: I had the Midwest area scout come out to see me pitch a few times. Luckily on my part, I had a very good outing where I was throwing very well. Not to say that I wasn’t all year, but in that particular outing my stuff was on. I was throwing in the low 90’s, and spotting up. He contacted me after the game to let me know that I did a good job and he will be in touch. That was really about it.”
Q: Leading up to today’s events, were the Yankees the organization that showed the most interest in you?
“A: No, they actually weren’t.”
Q: Do you expect to sign with New York quickly, or do you expect that it will be a longer process?
“A: I am going to sign right away. Either Sunday night in Chicago, or Monday morning when I arrive in Tampa.”
Q: As you can imagine, Yankee fans are always extremely interested in who the organization selects in the draft. Can you give the fans a brief scouting report on yourself?
“A: I pitch aggressive. Mentally that is one of my go to’s. I just try to be myself. When I am out on the mound, I tell myself just be Trevor Lane. I am going to be aggressive and get after the hitter. I am always very confident, so it really doesn’t matter who steps in the box. I am just worried about doing my thing. I throw any pitch in any count and like to mix it up. I am very excited to see how pro ball goes.”
Q: If you had to compare yourself to a current MLB player who would it be and why?
“A: I would say Travis Wood of the Chicago Cubs because he is a short, about 5’11, left handed reliever, who has a low 90’s fastball and keeps hitters off balance with his off-speed offerings. He’s effective and in my mind underrated in a way that a lot of us shorter relievers are. It definitely puts a chip on our shoulder, which is exactly what I like. I want to go out and show people that it doesn’t matter how tall you are. I am going to get after whoever steps in the box.”
Q: Who has been the most influential person (or people) in your baseball career thus far?
“A: My family, girlfriend and head coach from UIC. My family and girlfriend have always been very supportive of me. My head coach really made me find myself as a pitcher both mentally and physically, and as a person as well. Going to UIC and being in that program has made me a better person in general. It’s a night and day difference from where I was before my junior year to where I am now. So it’s really a combination of the support from my family and friends, coupled with having a great (college) coaching staff that can teach me the ways and condition me to be a better, more consistent pitcher.”
Q: You posted pretty dominant numbers this season for the University of Illinois Chicago. What can you attribute your success to?
“A: Buying into the process. I tried to dedicate myself to be the best player and teammate that I could possibly be. To be honest, I just wanted to become consistent enough to put my team in a position to win games. I would also definitely attribute a lot of my success to my coaching staff for teaching me about all the different aspects of the game, particularly the mental side. Before I went to UIC, I just got on the mound and threw. They taught me awareness of situations, both internally and externally. I also want to credit a lot of my success to my trainer Pat Donovan, who has been very supportive in helping encourage me over the past few years at UIC to stretch and take proper care of my arm. He is always there for me and has been a real help over the past two seasons. We focused on flexibility and I believe that directly correlated with the uptick in my velocity ”
Q: Last Question, before I let you go, can you please describe how your overall draft experience been?
“A: Leading up to the draft I was told a couple of things. Scouts had told me that they see me going anywhere from the 8th to the 15th round range. So I knew I wasn’t going to go day one, but had a real good chance to be selected today. The whole day for about four hours I literally just walked around my house and watched the draft tracker with my family. I didn’t eat or sit down pretty much the whole time, just checking what team was on the clock next and seeing who they picked. I looked for the teams that showed interest in me and would check when they pick next. The day kind of just winded down and came down to the wire at the end of the 10th round when the Yankees were looking at picking me. My heart started beating fast and I was thinking are they going to pick me? Am I going to get a call? When I saw my name come across the screen I just jumped up and started yelling and gave my dad a huge hug. Then my phone started blowing up. It was an awesome feeling.”
Trevor, thank you so much for your time. Best of luck to you in the future. Hope that you enjoy the rest of this special day with your family and friends.