High school baseball: Yukon's Jon Denney could be Oklahoma's highest-drafted position player since Darrell Porter

In mid-February, Yukon's baseball team went indoors to hit before the Millers' scrimmage against Deer Creek. But they weren't alone. More than 30 MLB scouts crowded around the cage trying to get a look at Yukon catcher Jon Denney.
by Ryan Aber Published: March 16, 2013
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photo - Yukon's Jon Denney catches during a high school baseball game at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark in Oklahoma City, Thursday, March 14, 2013. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Yukon's Jon Denney catches during a high school baseball game at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark in Oklahoma City, Thursday, March 14, 2013. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

He's signed with Arkansas, but it seems increasingly unlikely that he'll ever play for the Razorbacks.

After his performance at the Under Armour All-American Game at Wrigley Field, ESPN's Keith Law called Denney “one player who actually made himself some money.”

A week before, Denney had blasted a home run at the Area Code Games.

Still, the senior shrugs off the attention.

“I'm used to it now,” Denney said. “At first, it was a lot but really in the winter, it really just kind of blended together. I'm able to play my game and not worry about it.”

Denney said he's most at ease when most of the eyes are on him.

“When I'm up at bat, I'm the most relaxed ever,” Denney said. “That's one of the best parts of my game, I think, it's the way I handle things mentally.”

At the plate is also the area where Denney has made the most strides recently.

He's adjusted better from summer showcase baseball to the high school season this year, James said.

“He travels and you get to see high-quality pitching every time,” James said. “Not that we don't have good pitching or the people we face don't have good pitching, but it's not 95-96 mph and left-handers and stuff like that. Before, when he came back, he'd be ready to hit 95 and they're throwing softer and he'd get himself out.

“Now, he sits back on it and hits it. He'll take a walk if it comes his way. He's gotten more patient and more mature.”


by Ryan Aber
Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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