WOODSTOCK, Ga. -- The Atlanta Braves selected Etowah High School outfielder Drew Water's No. 41 overall in the MLB Draft on Monday.
Waters, 18, has already signed to play collegiate baseball at the University of Georgia. But after getting selected in the 2nd round by his hometown team, that's unlikely now for the switch hitter.
Braves scouting director Brian Bridges told the media after the pick the team was impressed by his switch-hitting, power and speed. The Braves were picking by best player available, and Waters was right in that spot on the team's board.
Water's high school coach, Greg Robinson, compared him to Cardinals outfielder Dexter Fowler who he coached at Milton High School.
"I haven't had a guy like [Waters] in my 20-plus years," Robinson said. "He's got that Mickey Mantle type ability in that he runs so well. He's got a plus arm. He's gonna hit for an average, and he's gonna pop from both sides of the plate."
Waters visited SunTrust Park for batting practice prior to the draft. While he told 11Alive he didn't want to fall to the No. 41 pick, he would be happy to play for his hometown team.
He didn't visit too many other teams other than the Tigers. He was letting his long senior season, where he hit .516 with 15 home runs and 40 RBIs, speak for itself. It ended in a 7-A state title with the Etowah Eagles.
"I’m feeling good," he said before the draft. "The things I can control, I can’t control anything else from this point. I did everything I could. So what’s meant to happen is going to happen. And I got a good feeling that come [Monday] night, I’m going to like what happens."
Waters watched the draft at home with his family and close friends.
That included dad, who is a former Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets offensive lineman. But Water's got into baseball thanks to his older brother. Gradually, he put aside the pads to pickup the glove. His older brother played baseball at Georgia. His sister played soccer in Athens, too. Waters was headed there next, despite it being his dad's alma mater's biggest rival.
"It’s crazy to believe this, but he’s now wearing red and black," Waters said.
Both Waters and his dad can ditch the red and black for now and start working on their Tomahawk Chops.
The Braves selected Vanderbilt right-handed pitcher Kyle Wright No. 5 overall earlier Monday.
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