North Andover's Sebastian Keane drafted by New York Yankees

·3 min read

Jul. 19—Three years ago Keane had a chance to join his childhood team, as he was drafted by the Boston Red Sox after leading North Andover High to the Super 8 championship.

Now with his selection by the New York Yankees, he'll have an opportunity to suit up on the other side of the rivalry.

The 6-foot-3, 187-pound right-handed pitcher was previously an 11th round pick by the Red Sox in 2019 but opted not to sign. He instead attended Northeastern University, where he has spent the past three seasons and helped lead the Huskies to a conference title and an NCAA Tournament appearance as a sophomore in 2021.

Keane endured a somewhat disappointing junior season, which played a role in his being drafted as late as he was, but Northeastern baseball coach Mike Glavine said Keane still has all the tools to thrive at the next level and expects big things from him going forward.

"I'm just really happy for him to get this opportunity and for the Yankees to see the future in him," Glavine said. "I watched him pitch at the MLB Combine and I see all the talent in the world and I see a kid who still looks like he's 18.

"I think the sky is the limit for him," Glavine continued. "His hand speed is elite, his arm speed is elite, his movements are elite, he's just going to get better and better."

Prior to his college career, Keane was one of the greatest high school players to ever come out of the Merrimack Valley region. Keane finished his North Andover High career 21-5 with a 0.66 ERA and 272 strikeouts in 168.1 innings, and he also batted .326 with 46 RBI at the plate.

He was particularly dominant as a senior, going 11-1 with a 0.50 ERA and 128 strikeouts over 70 innings to lead North Andover to the Super 8 title and clean up virtually every major award, including Mass Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year.

Now Keane becomes the latest Northeastern star to find a home in the Bronx.

Cam Schlittler, Keane's rotation-mate and a righty from Walpole, was also taken by the Yankees in the seventh round, and fellow North Andover resident and ex-Husky standout Max Burt also plays in the Yankees system.

"I'm excited, really happy for him, obviously I've been following him throughout his career at Northeastern and I'm really looking forward to him getting into our system," said Burt, who currently plays for the Yankees' Double-A affiliate. "Our pitching development along with our entire player development is the best of the best, so I'm excited for him to get in here and get working with our staff and keep getting better."

The local pipeline is no accident. Glavine credited Burt and his success with helping forge a lasting relationship between Northeastern and the Yankees, which he said played a meaningful role in Keane and Schlittler earning their own opportunities. He said Yankees scout Matt Hyde and director of amateur scouting Damon Oppenheimer have been regular presences on campus and that they invested a lot of time and effort into Keane and Schlittler in the lead-up to the draft.

"They're there, they work, they're on the ground, they're scouting and they're everywhere," Glavine said. "So I give a ton of credit to Matt and Damon and to Max for paving the way and for the Yankees trusting Sebastian and Cam, it's awesome to see them become a part of the Yankees organization together."

A third Northeastern pitcher, Thomas Balboni of Florida, was also picked in the 15th round by the San Diego Padres.