Q&A with Yankees 39th Round Pick Deacon Liput

We sat down with Yankees' 39th round pick, Deacon Liput, for a Draft Day Q&A session. Find out what the shortstop from Oviedo High School in Florida says about his game, how he feels being drafted by the Yankees, about his commitment to the University of Florida, and much more.

PinstripesPlus.com: Tell us what it feels like to be selected by the New York Yankees?

Deacon Liput: It was a dream and a goal realized. To hear your name, regardless of where in the draft is cool enough, but to hear I was selected by the New York Yankees was amazing.

PinstripesPlus.com: Talk about your game a little bit. What type of player are you and how do you see yourself fitting in with the Yankees?

Liput: I grew up a coach's kid and I had two older brothers that my dad coached before me, so from the time I was able to walk I was at the ball parks watching games and hanging in the dugout. My dad is very old school and that was the way he taught us how to play and for that I am very grateful. I let others label me, but all I know is that I play to win. I will never get out-worked and I can play anywhere in the field that I am needed.

PinstripesPlus.com: What are your strengths and your weaknesses?

Liput: I love to compete and pride myself on never throwing away an at-bat. As far as weaknesses I am sure I have many but God has blessed me with good athleticism and a good work ethic so whatever I am asked to improve on I am confident I can get there.

PinstripesPlus.com: How about your defensive game??

Liput: I grew up a catcher and second baseman and when I got to high school I was asked to play shortstop my freshman year on varsity. I think I am very fundamental but perhaps sometimes I should let my speed and athleticism play on reactions instead of thinking about it. I have improved a lot over the last few years defensively but I am excited to learn so much more from college and pro instructors in the future.

PinstripesPlus.com: Who would you compare your game to at the Major League level so the Yankees' fans have an idea of what your game is like??

Liput: I have had folks tell me I am a little faster and a left-handed version of Joe Panik with the Giants. I have good power now and my speed allows me to hit doubles and triples and as I continue to get stronger more home runs will follow, but I think decision makers would like for me to be more of a run scorer versus producer.

PinstripesPlus.com: Were you expecting to be drafted by the Yankees or were you surprised when they selected you??

Liput: Certainly excited but more surprised as I had not spoken or heard from the Yankees until the draft.

PinstripesPlus.com: Do you see yourself staying at the same position or do you think you'll be moved to another position??

Liput: From what folks tell me is that they think I will shift to second base or third base. I really don't care but I would like to prove to myself and whatever team that I can't handle shortstop first. I just want to win, so again whatever is best.

PinstripesPlus.com: What would you say is your best moment in baseball and why?

Liput: Without a doubt winning a state championship with my high school team. We had come close every year but finally won it all my senior year. It was the first baseball ship in my school's 80-year history; long over due but for me certainly worth the wait.

PinstripesPlus.com: Who was your favorite team and player growing up?

Liput: My dad is a lifelong Braves fan so I would say the Braves have been a family tradition.

PinstripesPlus.com: What are your immediate plans now that you have been drafted by the Yankees? Is it your intention to sign now and start your professional career immediately?

Liput: My plans now are to enroll in school at Florida this summer and to continue to condition and preparing myself to compete at such a great program.


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