Anchorage’s Brody Jessee reflects on being drafted to MLB

Published: Jul. 29, 2022 at 9:41 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Most young athletes who have aspirations of becoming a professional dream of having their name called on draft night, and that came true for Anchorage’s Brody Jessee when he was selected in the 10th round of the 2022 Major League Baseball Draft by the Cincinnati Reds.

“I think the number one thing is excitement,” Jessee said, while in Goodyear, Arizona, for training. “I just have been dreaming about this for so long, so just to get the foot in the door to get to the bigs is just a huge deal and it is something I have worked really hard for. And a lot of people have tried to help me get here, to the point where it’s just time to really get to work and get there.”

The 21-year-old South Anchorage High School graduate just completed his sophomore season at Gonzaga University, where he racked up 81 strikeouts in 60 innings during his career as a Bulldog. His strong arm and efficiency on the mound led to a 303rd overall pick, one of the higher selections among Alaska’s all-time MLB draftees.

”It is one of those things where you partially feel like you made it under the lens of growing up in Alaska and hearing those select few that really got the call, you just kind of feel like you made it a little bit,” the 6-foot-4 right-hander said. “But all of those guys got drafted and wanted to go to the bigs, so it is kind of that same mindset where you can celebrate, not for too long though. But it’s cool, they are all reaching out and like, ‘hey do you need any help,’ like ‘I got you, I understand it, I went through it.’”

Jessee understands that his journey from Alaska to an MLB draft pick is rare, but he believes that with the direction the sport is headed within the state, he may be joined by fellow Alaskans soon enough.

”I think there are a lot of things going really well for Alaska baseball that helped me get to where I am, there is a building of baseball culture in Alaska that hasn’t happened before,” Jessee said. “I think it is going to be really interesting to watch in the next few years and see where guys go and how well they do and I think there is going to be an increase in some professional talent coming up pretty soon.”

The work is just getting started for Jessee, who will continue to work out and be evaluated by the Reds before determining where to place him within the organization’s minor league system.

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