Well, if you’re a local and a fan of the Rangers, chances are you are not a fan of the New York Yankees, or the “Evil Empire” as they’re not-so-affectionately known. Now, you might have to be.
Austin Aune, who graduated from Argyle last week and had already reported to TCU, where he’d signed to play football and baseball, was drafted by the Yankees at approximately 11:50 a.m. while sitting in his dorm room at TCU. The Yankees made him the 89th overall selection in the second round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
Apparently, Aune had a deal worked out with the Yankees before the draft, of which terms he would not disclose, but we do know the Yankees’ slot for that spot in the draft was $548,400. I’d guess he got more, considering the Yankees’ history of signing their high draft picks. Aune was a star from the time he set foot on Argyle’s campus, moving from Coppell as an eighth-grader. He signed in February to play quarterback at TCU after leading Argyle to the Class 3A Division II state championship game back in December. But baseball has long been his meal ticket, and that proved true on Tuesday when he left TCU after packing his few-days worth of things and he will soon report to Tampa, Fla., to the Yankees’ Gulf Coast League team and could soon end up in their short-season team in Staten Island if he does well in Tampa. The Staten Island season would run from June 18-Aug. 25.
For Argyle this past season, he hit .447 with a team-high eight home runs and 41 RBIs from the leadoff spot while playing shortstop. He’ll move to center field in the pros.
A few words about Aune from various sources:
Perfect Game USA said the following…
They projected him as a third-round pick, ranked as the No. 8 player among Texas high-schoolers, and the No. 62 player among nationwide high-schoolers.
A two-sport star in high school, Aune has the ability to make it in either football or baseball. A potential five-tool player, Aune bats lefty and has potential plus power. He has good range at shortstop and a great arm, but scouts think that a move to the outfield could be in his near future. Aune could potentially play center field at the next level, especially because of his great speed and arm. Although a bit raw, Aune’s upside and great makeup should allow the toolsy outfielder to be picked in the early going of the Draft.
So there you go. The Yankees, of course, also drafted former Ryan standout Austin Jackson, who went in the eighth round of the 2005 draft and was later flipped to the Detroit Tigers for Curtis Granderson. He’s been the Tigers’ starting center fielder now for two seasons and is in the middle of his third.
The good thing for Aune is that he’ll have options. It’s always seemed that baseball would be his ideal route. In all honesty, it would have been tough for him to find the field as a quarterback at TCU. This usually happens with quarterbacks/baseball players. The majority of the time, they go the baseball route. It’s more money, security and a lot less of a risk health-wise.
Of course, if things don’t work out with the Yankees, he could always go the Brandon Weeden route. Weeden, of course, is now set to be the starting quarterback for the Cleveland Browns after being selected in the first round of the April draft after a stellar two seasons at Oklahoma State. But before that, he was in Aune’s position, a Yankees second-round pick who toiled in the farm system for five seasons for the Yankees, Dodgers and Royals, never getting above High-A ball in High Desert with the Royals.
Of course, the rest is history.
If things don’t work out, it’s nice knowing you can come back and play college football when you’re 24 or 25 playing against a bunch of kids.
Not to say Aune will become the next Weeden, but he has plenty of upside that the scouts have raved about and has all the potential to be a five-tool guy (hit for average, hit for power, arm, speed and defensive ability). Those are hard to come by.