My recommendation is to start with a single-handed rod. Overhead casting is a lot easier, and will give you the sense of timing required if you ever want to learn spey casting. A 9' 6wt. is a very versatile rod - not too heavy for small bass and trout, but strong enough for bigger fish.
I'm a bamboo guy, but I know there are lots of entry level rods available from Redington (owned by Sage), TFO, and others. If you're just starting, these rods usually have a softer action, which makes them a lot easier to cast when you're first learning. Don't go to a discount store - all fly shops carry good entry level rods, and can help you match the rod with a reel and line.
When you are first learning to cast, you'll do much better taking lessons or classes, rather than spending a lot on expensive rods or reels.