Barbe High's Brody Drost will be hoping to hear his name called Wednesday or Thursday when Major League Baseball conducts its First-Year Player Draft.
Drost, a left-handed power hitter who also pitches, has garnered interest from a handful of teams. Last summer he was selected to participate in the MLB/USA Baseball Prospect Development Prospect League, an invitation-only event open to the top 80 high school prospects in the country.
This year's draft class faces a squeeze as the draft was reduced from 40 rounds to five due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Drost signed a letter-of-intent to play at LSU if he is not drafted or chooses not to sign a professional contract.
Drost made the most of his abbreviated senior season, winning the Gatorade Louisiana Player of the Year award after going 3-0 on the mound with a 0.89 ERA. At the plate, he hit .390 with two home runs and nine RBIs as the Bucs went 11-3 before the remainder of the season was canceled in March.
Last year, Drost helped the Bucs win the Class 5A state championship, going 8-0 with a 0.98 ERA while hitting .364 with seven homers and 37 RBIs. Drost was named Most Outstanding Player in the championship game after hitting a double and home run while driving in five runs. He plays in the outfield or at first base when not pitching.
"Being nominated for the Gatorade Player of the Year alongside some of the best players in the state was an incredible honor in itself, and then ultimately being named the best player in the state was the highlight of my senior year," Drost said.
Since the coronavirus break, Drost said he has continued to work on his game.
"I mainly have been training to get ready for the draft or LSU," he said. "I have been working out, hitting and continuing my throwing program in anticipation of baseball starting back up."
The organizations showing the most interest in Drost are the Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates and Detroit Tigers. Drost said he hopes to continue to be used as a pitcher and hitter despite organizations showing more interest in him as a hitter.
"I am going to do both until one outshines the other," he said.
Drost said he was sad to see the draft shortened.
"I was a little upset about the draft only being five rounds because it will have an effect on everybody planning on getting drafted and all the organizations for years to come," he said. "But, I do believe that everything happens for a reason."
If he is drafted this week, Drost will be forced to decide between going pro or heading to Baton Rouge for a few years.
"I'll consider the signing bonus, which team drafts me and make the decision with my family," he said.
If he isn't picked, Drost said he'll be happy to head to Baton Rouge.
"Ever since I was young I dreamed of playing for such a prestigious program in front of the best fans in the country," he said. "I can't wait to see what's in the future."
Drost said his time at Barbe has him prepared to succeed.
"I enjoyed playing for such a distinguished winning program, such a highly respected coach (Glenn Cecchini) and alongside such amazing teammates that have the same mind-set as me," he said. "Everyone pushed me to be the best version of myself."