The Yankees seemed to go off the board with their first-round pick last night. Cito Culver did not seem to be on anyone’s mind except Damon Oppenheimer, who called it “an easy decision.”
“I didn’t know what to do,” Culver told the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. “My legs gave out, I just fell. I love the Yankees.”
Culver hasn’t had the easiest path. His father is in prison for arson and other charges, and Culver has apparently used baseball and basketball as a release from what could not possibly have been an easy situation.
“He definitely, 100 percent, jumps out at you when you see him field and throw a baseball,” an opposing coach told the Rochester newspaper. “You would say ‘Wow.’ He’s that good, that kind of player… I tell you what, he’s the most-regarded position player from around here in a long, long time, in terms of being able to make it at the next level.”
Culver has committed to play at Maryland, but the Yankees will obviously try to convince him to turn pro. It’s worth noting that Culver played on the Yankees’ Area Code team last summer and worked out at Yankee Stadium. The rest of us might not know much about him, but you can bet the Yankees have seen him plenty of times and made the choice for a reason.