MLB Draft: Rancho Bernardo High’s Katoh selected by New York Yankees with 66th overall pick
By Michael Bower
Gosuke Katoh has always wanted to be a professional baseball player and on Thursday night he took a giant leap toward making that dream come true.
The Rancho Bernardo High senior baseball star was selected by the New York Yankees in the second round with the 66th overall pick on the first day of the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
“I was sitting on the couch waiting around and I wasn’t expecting my name to be called …,” Katoh said of the moment leading up to his selection. “…Then I looked up at the TV and they said ‘with the 66th pick, the Yankees select Gosuke Katoh’ and I couldn’t believe it.”
Katoh, who signed a scholarship to UCLA earlier this year, seems to have his heart set on joining the Yankees instead of the Bruins. The signing bonus where Katoh was taken is usually around $780,000.
“If everything works out like it should with no road bumps, then I should be a Yankee by next week,” he said.
The 6-foot, 2-inch, 180-pound Katoh was the Palomar League Player of the year, hitting .468 with 31 RBIs and nine home runs in the regular season. The second baseman, who was ranked as the 189th best prospect by Baseball America, helped the Broncos win three section titles in the last four years, including the CIF San Diego Section Open Division crown this past season.
Katoh, who grew up idolizing current New York Yankees outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, throws right handed and hits left handed. His premium bat speed and strong glove has helped him skyrocket up teams’ draft boards in the last few weeks.
“The Yankees obviously have a historic program, and it is the Yankees, you can’t really say more than that,” said Katoh, who will join his good friend in Madison High’s Ian Clarkin, who was selected by the Yankees with the 33rd overall pick. “But the fact my friend Ian Clarkin will be on the same team is fantastic. I really am looking forward to playing with him in the organization.”
Katoh was the first second baseman taken in this year’s draft.
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