May 17--Broward County will be represented live at the MLB draft early next month.
American Heritage first baseman and Miami Hurricanes signee Triston Casas was invited to the first round on June 4 and plans on attending.
"It was pretty amazing [to get invited]," Casas told the Sun Sentinel. "I've been watching the draft now for a couple of years, and I've seen the guys that were invited there and how special it is to see the looks on their faces.
"I'm looking forward to hopefully getting my name called pretty early that day and sharing that moment with my family. It's going to be pretty cool."
The power-hitting lefty was one of five players invited to attend in person and will be interviewed during the broadcast, according to a press release. The draft will take place at MLB Network's Studio 42 in New York and also stream on MLB.com.
"It's an exciting moment for Triston," American Heritage coach Bruce Aven said. "He deserves everything he's getting. He's put in the work, and we're very proud of him."
The latest mock draft on MLB.com has him going to the Miami Marlins with the 13th pick. The slot value of the signing bonus there is $4,038,200.
At 6 feet 5 and 249 pounds, Casas is lauded by scouts for his raw hitting power and pitch recognition for an 18-year-old.
"He takes everything that he does very seriously, with a very professional approach," said Matt Blood, Team USA 18U national director, in a statement.
Casas has posted a .393 batting average with six home runs and 29 RBI this season and leads the county in walks (27) as Heritage rolls into regional finals after topping rival Archbishop McCarthy on Wednesday.
He was a first-team All-County selection in the Sun Sentinel each of the past two seasons.
Other Patriots who may be draftable senior prospects are infielder Cory Acton, a Florida signee, and pitcher Bailey Mantilla, signed to UM like Casas.
Last year, the highest local prospect selected was Pavin Smith, a University of Virginia first baseman who went through Palm Beach Gardens and was taken seventh by the Arizona Diamondbacks. McCarthy's Joe Perez and Heritage's Mark Vientos were both second-round picks.
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