Derek James Hankins
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 4", Weight 195 lb.
Derek Hankins has pitched four seasons at AAA (through 2013).
Hankins was All-State twice in baseball and once in basketball in high school. He was 4-2 as a junior college freshman and 8-2 with a 3.00 ERA as a sophomore to win All-Conference. Transferring to Memphis, he went 8-5 with a 4.58 ERA and 114 K to 25 BB in 92 1/3 IP. He tied for 8th in Conference USA in wins and was second to Greg Bunn in strikeouts. The Pittsburgh Pirates took him in the 10th round of the 2004 amateur draft, one pick after Justin Maxwell. Jack Powell was the scout.
Derek made his pro debut with the Williamsport Crosscutters, going 6-4 with a 3.04 ERA and only 14 walks in 83 innings. He tied for third in the New York-Penn League in wins (behind Ronnie Ventura and Rodrigo Escobar), was 4th in innings, had the 5th-lowest baserunners/9 IP (10.08) and tied for the home run lead (9). He fell to 6-6, 4.49 with 2005 Hickory Crawdads. He was 5-11 with a 4.73 ERA for the Lynchburg Hillcats in 2006, finishing among the Carolina League leaders in IP (142 2/3, 4th, between Jimmy Barthmaier and Jack Egbert), losses (tied for first with Dave Haehnel and Kevin Hart), runs allowed (82, tied for 5th with Gary Galvez), pitcher putouts (15, tied for first) and lowest walk rate (2.21 BB/9, 3rd-lowest). He tied Sean Burnett for the most losses by a Pirates farmhand.
His ERA continued to climb in 2007, split between Lynchburg (8-6, 5.24) and the Altoona Curve (0-1, 6 R in 3 2/3 IP). He was 2-11 for Altoona in 2008 though he lowered his ERA to 4.54 and retained his control (26 BB in 119 IP). He tied for second in the Eastern League in losses, two behind Brandon Magee, and had the fifth-lowest walk rate among EL starters. In the Pittsburgh farm system, he tied for third in losses, behind Duke Welker and Tony Watson. During 2009, the Illinois native was 3-4 with a save and a 4.42 ERA for the Curve. He was 0-1 with a 9.15 ERA for the 2009-2010 Cardenales de Lara of the Venezuelan League. He was better in 2010 with Altoona (5-5, 7 Sv, 2.83 in 34 G) though he had an inauspicious welcome in AAA with the Indianapolis Indians (1-0, 3 R in 1 2/3 IP).
Derek was signed by the Texas Rangers as a minor league free agent. He split 2011 between the Frisco RoughRiders (1-2, 4.82) and Round Rock Express (7-6, 5.89). In 2012, he was 6-7 with a 4.99 ERA for Round Rock. He moved on to the Detroit Tigers chain for 2013 and started the year well with the Erie SeaWolves (1-1, 3.06 in 3 G) and Toledo Mud Hens (4-4, 3.03 in 14 G). The Doosan Bears signed him to replace the struggling Garrett Olson. He was only 3-3 with a 6.23 ERA and .326 opponent average in the 2013 KBO season. He was much better in the postseason, not allowing a run in 10 1/3 innings through game 4 of the 2013 Korean Series. He came up big in a Game 2 win for Doosan, retiring Tae-wan Kim with men on second and third and a 1-1 tie in the bottom of the 8th.