Name: Thomas Kahnle
School level: JR
With their 5th pick the Yankees selected right handed pitcher Tommy Kahnle out of Lynn University. He’s 6’0″ and 225 lbs. and has been a starter, but the general consensus seems to be that he’ll eventually make a move the bullpen.
Here is what Baseball America had to say about him:
Lynn’s poor season didn’t drag down Kahnle’s draft stock. The stocky 6-foot, 225-pound righty has the same 93-94 mph fastball velocity (touching 95 at times after reaching 97 last summer) that he showed last year en route to the national title and in the Cape Cod League. Kahnle was pressed into a starting role this season and just doesn’t have the quality offspeed stuff to go through a lineup more than once or twice at this stage. His changeup is his second-best pitch, and his breaking ball was sharper last summer than this spring. He can show periods of control but lacks command and profiles as a bullpen arm. Short college righthanders who go 2-7, 5.06 with 71 strikeouts and 47 walks in 75 innings at the D-II level usually don’t fly off the board, but Kahnle’s track record in the Cape should still get him picked in the first 10 rounds.
Here is what ESPN had to say about him:
Kahnle works as a starter now, but his all-out style is better suited to the pen. He’s a big guy, thickly built but squat, like Eric Gagne, and airs it out on every pitch. He comes from a high 3/4 slot and sits 92-94 as a starter, although in relief on the Cape he touched 98 and would probably sit 94-96 if used in that role for an entire season. His two main drawbacks as a starter candidate are his lack of a second pitch — he tries to throw a curveball but has no feel for it — and below-average command, as he’s missing Division 2 bats now on velocity, but frequently works out of the zone. He’ll flash a changeup and that’s more likely to become an average pitch than the curve, and he could be an above-average reliever in the majors with the plus fastball, an average change, his preference for attacking hitters.
He sounds like a decent pitcher. Too bad he doesn’t project to be a starter at this point, but it seems too early to write him off. My guess is that if he signs quickly he’ll start the season in Staten Island. He’ll probably spend the entire season there, but after that being a reliever might actually give him a chance to move up quickly. Anytime you can draft a pitcher who is capable of hitting 97 that is a good thing.