PinstripePlus.com: What is going through your mind right now after being selected by a team like the Yankees?
Dalton Higgins: Well, it has always been a dream of mine to play professional baseball. To be selected by an organization with such a great history is really a blessing and an answer to prayer. I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to meet some new people, build relationships and most of all compete on the field.
PinstripePlus.com: Were you surprised that the Yankees selected you? Was there any talk between you and them leading into the draft?
Higgins: I was a little bit surprised. I had a couple of short conversations with them in the weeks leading up to the draft but nothing too extensive, so when I heard them call my name it came as a little bit of a surprise but I was thrilled that they chose me.
PinstripePlus.com: Do you have any idea what the Yankees organization or their farm system is like?
Higgins: There have been a couple of guys from Dallas Baptist that have been a part of the Yankees organization before me and I have heard nothing but good things about the organization from them. I know they expect hard work and cooperation which is exactly what I’m looking forward to contributing.
PinstripePlus.com: So if you could, give me a scouting report on yourself, what types of pitches do you throw and what speeds? What are your strengths and what do you think you need to work on?
Higgins: My two main pitches are a fastball at 93-95, and a slider at 84-86. I have also really been working to develop my curveball and changeup. My curveball has been of use against left handed batters this last year and I am really looking forward to throwing my changeup more and more. A strength is the action on my fastball. It tends to run in on right handed hitters and sink, so I can throw it inside and let it run under their hands it gets some swing and misses and a good amount of ground balls. What I would like to continue working on is my changeup, developing that will give me more of an opportunity to mix my pitches and keep hitters guessing.
PinstripePlus.com: So, what was your favorite team growing up and favorite player?
Higgins: Well, I grew up about 20 minutes from the Rangers ballpark so I naturally gravitated toward the Rangers. But I always enjoyed watching Mariano Rivera pitch. I just thought it was incredible the way he dominated, his presence and his demeanor on the mound was something I really admired.
PinstripePlus.com: Who would you say in Major League Baseball, you can compare your stuff too, so Yankees fans can get an idea of how you are like on the mound?
Higgins: That is an interesting one. As far as stuff goes, I have never compared myself to anyone because when I am on the mound I don’t want to try to be anyone else. My job is to get guys out by being myself, and I don’t want to get a clouded perception of who I am when I am on the mound. That being said, as far as demeanor and attitude on the mound I would say I am similar to Madison Bumgarner. I think he pitches with a lot of intent and fire so I have modeled that aspect of my game after him.
PinstripePlus.com: What would you say is your best moment in baseball so far?
Higgins: I would say it was my freshman year at DBU when we had the opportunity to host a regional in Dallas.
PinstripePlus.com: Are you looking to sign quickly with the Yankees and get your professional career started?
Higgins: I’m really excited to sign and get my career underway, it’s such a blessing to be part of the organization and I’m really looking forward to what’s in store.
PinstripePlus.com: Do you think the pressures of pitching in New York might be a problem for you?
Higgins: I don’t think it will be a problem, I enjoy pressure situations so I think it will be a lot of fun for me.