Yankees draft Mariano Rivera Jr. in 29th round

New York Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera, right, accompanied

New York Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera, right, accompanied by his son, Mariano Rivera Jr., bangs the gavel after ringing the New York Stock Exchange opening bell Wednesday on July 18, 2012. Photo Credit: AP

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Joe Girardi called it "neat.'' Mariano Rivera likely would agree.

The Yankees drafted the iconic closer's son, Mariano Rivera Jr., in the 29th round of the first-year player draft Saturday. "We know he comes from good bloodlines,'' Girardi said.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

This past year, in his sophomore season for Iona, Rivera -- who began his college career at Quinnipiac -- went 2-6 with a 5.40 ERA in 13 appearances (12 starts) and 70 innings. He struck out 50 and walked 26.

Scouts have said the 20-year-old's best pitch is a slider, not the cut fastball his father made famous. Rivera Jr. has only dabbled with that pitch.

Girardi said he saw the elder Rivera last week and got a brief scouting report.

"His velocity, as he's gotten bigger and stronger, it's increased,'' Girardi said. "Mo didn't have much to say. He's always been a humble guy and he wasn't going to say much about his son. But he loves what he's doing.''

advertisement | advertise on newsday

The Yankees chose Andy Pettitte's son Josh out of Deer Park (Texas) High in the 37th round in 2013. He went to Baylor and transferred to Rice.

Subscribe to Newsday’s sports newsletter for stories, photos and videos about your favorite New York teams plus national sports news and events.


Newsday.com now uses Facebook for our comment boards. Please read our guidelines and connect your Facebook account to comment.

You also may be interested in: