Aug. 6, 2013

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State right-hander Jaron Long has signed a free agent contract with the New York Yankees, the organization announced Thursday. Jaron, the son of Yankees’ hitting coach Kevin Long, was a weekend starter for the Buckeyes the last two seasons after transferring from Chandler-Gilbert CC. He made his first professional appearance with the GCL Yankees Monday, tossing a scoreless inning while striking out a batter.

“I’ve been around the game my whole life and this has been a goal of mine so when the opportunity presented itself I sat down with my family and came to the conclusion this was the best decision for me,” Long said. “I couldn’t have made it here without the support from Ohio State. I appreciate Coach Beals, Coach Stafford, Coach Holick, Coach Newman and Coach Hansen for all of the time and effort they put in to helping me get to this point.”

Long, a native of Scottsdale, Ariz., went 6-7 with a 4.02 ERA and 68 strikeouts in 16 appearances for the Buckeyes in 2013. He tied for the team lead and third in the Big Ten in innings pitched. Long’s 68 strikeouts tied for fifth in the Big Ten and his 27 strikeouts looking were the most in the conference. For his career, Long went 12-9 with a 3.34 ERA and 131 strikeouts in 202.0 innings pitched.

Long spent the last two summers with the Bourne Braves in the Cape Cod Collegiate Baseball League, earning the nod as the West starter in the league’s all-star game July 27. He went 5-1 with a 0.30 ERA and 25 strikeouts in 30.0 innings pitched for the Braves this summer.

“I’m very happy for Jaron and excited for him to have this opportunity to see a dream and a goal being fulfilled,” Ohio State head coach Greg Beals said. “It’s a bit of a catch-22 situation for us with him being a two-year weekend starter and we will obviously miss him on our 2014 club but we certainly wish him the best of luck.”

Long joins Brad Goldberg, Brett McKinney and Kirby Pellant as 2013 Buckeyes who have signed professionally. Goldberg was a 10th round selection by the Chicago White Sox while McKinney was taken in the 19th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates and Pellant was picked in the 26th round by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.