Hilo’s Carter Selected in 24th Round of MLB Draft
Hilo High School graduate Jodd Carter Saturday became the second Big Island baseball player to be selected in the 2014 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
Carter was selected in the 24th round by the Cleveland Indians. He was taken with the 728th overall pick. Two days earlier, Waiakea graduate Kodi Medeiros was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers with the 12th overall pick.
“I found out through a text message, and then I got the call,” Carter said moments after finding out he was drafted.”I was happy and excited.”
Carter worked out for about 10 different teams prior to being drafted. The Indians were one of them, as part of a multiple team session. The only single team session came with the Texas Rangers. Carter, along with Kamehameha-Hawai`i catcher Makoa Rosario, participated in that session, which was held on Oahu.
Carter hit .484 during his senior season. His head coach at Hilo High, Tony DeSa, said that he also hit a pair of home runs and drove in 20 runs batted in as the team’s center fielder. He also played a key role as a reliable late-inning relief pitcher.
Carter dedicated himself to baseball in his senior season. He opted not to play basketball, a sport he had lettered in for the Vikings, and focused on getting stronger for the baseball season.
Part of that dedication included his work away from practices. Carter said that following baseball practice, he would spend extra time working on his hitting mechanics. He would follow that with late night strength training. He would get to the gym anywhere between 9-10 p.m. and leave around 11 after lifting weights and doing other mechanics to improve his speed.
“He already had that gift of tracking balls down in the outfield, speed, and all that. He just needed to get stronger, and he did,” DeSa said.
Carter called playing in the majors something he’s wanted to do since he was little, and being drafted by a professional franchise was a “dream come true” for him.
Carter has not decided whether to take a chance at the pros or wait and attend college. He has committed to two different schools, the University of Hawai`i and Central Arizona College. a community college located in Coolidge, Ariz. If he decides not to sign with the Indians, Carter will have to choose between the two programs.