Q&A With Rays 12th Round Pick Taylor Hawkins

The Rays selected Taylor Hawkins out of Carl Albert High School in Oklahoma in the 12th round of the MLB first-year player draft, the 392nd overall pick. Inside, the 5'11" 188-pound catcher discusses being drafted and the decision he now faces between going pro or attending the University of Oklahoma.

School: Carl Albert (Okla.) High School
Born: 9/17/1993
B/T: R/R
HT/WT: 6-0/190

• Finished his high school career with Carl Albert HS with a school-record 74 home runs, one shy of Jeff Clement's national record.

• Finished the 2012 season with a .391 average, 28 homers and 81 RBI.

• In 2011 helped his high school team win its third state title in six years in the Class 5A state final.

• Committed to the University of Oklahoma.


Rays Digest: What was the moment like when you found out you were drafted?

Taylor Hawkins: It was pretty amazing. I was in my truck and we were coming back from our game, I didn't even know about it at first then two of my teammates ran up to the truck and said, "Do you know what happened?" I said, "No, what are you talking about?" and they had a picture on the phone of where I got drafted. They said congrats and gave me a hug, then after that I got a phone call from my mom telling me to come home.

Rays Digest: Were you surprised it was the Rays? What kind of communication had you had with the Rays before you were selected?

Taylor Hawkins: No I wasn't surprised, I thought that if I was going to get drafted it was going to be by the Rays. I went to a pre-draft workout with them which I thought went pretty good.

Rays Digest: You committed to the University of Oklahoma. How are you feeling about signing with the Rays? What are you looking for in terms of a contract?

Taylor Hawkins: I feel like if they come up with a deal I'll be in the Rays organization. I definitely want to be. I'm just looking for something I'm comfortable with and is the right deal.

Rays Digest: What do you think are the strengths of your game? What would a scouting report on you look like? What are you trying to improve?

Taylor Hawkins: I feel like I'm pretty good behind the plate, I have a lot of power with the bat. I just feel like I need to be more consistent, I have a lot of things I can work on.

Rays Digest: Do you have a favorite player or a player you compare your game to?

Taylor Hawkins: My favorite player is Josh Hamilton, but I don't try to compare my game to him. I mean I want to be a hitter like Josh Hamilton, but he's pretty impressive.

Rays Digest: What would it mean to you to be a part of the Rays organization?

Taylor Hawkins: It would be great. I've worked my whole life to be able to have this opportunity to be drafted, and it happened. To be a part of the Rays organization would be pretty amazing.

Eric Vander Voort is the Hudson Valley beat writer for Rays Digest You can follow him on Twitter at @ecvandervoort.


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