MLB Draft 2010: Is Cito Culver Next Derek Jeter or Yankees Wasted Pick?

June 8, 2010   ·     ·   Jump to comments
Article Source: Bleacher Report - New York Yankees

New York Yankees, meet the next Derek Jeter. 17-year-old shortstop Christopher “Cito” Culver was drafted last night by the Yankees as the 32nd overall draft pick.

Rochester native Culver is only the second high school shortstop to get drafted by the Yanks in the first round since Jeter in 1992, and CJ Henry in 2005.

The Yankees will look for the Irondequoit High School senior to develop into the likes of his favorite player: Jeter.

Culver certainly has the tools to accomplish this daunting task. The switch-hitter batted .561, had 9 HR’s, and 38 RBIs in 22 games, according to his high school’s website.

The shortstop also had a .933 fielding percentage, and only committed eight errors in 120 chances.

The multidimensional Culver also seems to have a pitching arm, although he identifies himself as a shortstop. The chameleon pitches righty, and has reached 94 mph on the mound.

Culver has held his high school team’s Most Valuable Player award for the three seasons, and played for the Yankees Area Code Team this past summer. He previously committed to the University of Maryland, but there has been talks about him being willing to forgo that deal.

One person who won’t be celebrating his first round pick is his father, Christopher Culver Sr., who is currently serving prison time. Culver Sr. may be imprisoned for six more years following a guilty plea of multiple charges, including first degree burglary and third degree arson. Culver’s father burnt down their Rochester home on Easter Sunday in 2008.

The pick was a surprising one for the Yankees, as Culver was projected to go in the fourth to sixth round range. Whether this pick will be a bust like the 2005 pick of Henry, or a hit like the 1992 pick of Jeter, we will see.

It seems that Culver has the range and the arm power to keep his favored position at shortstop. Culver lists playing in the MLB as his future plans on his high school website, so keep an eye out for this diamond in the rough.

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