25 years after passing on Derek Jeter, the Reds selected SS Jeter Downs in the 2017 Draft
25 years ago, the Reds had the fifth pick in the 1992 MLB Draft. They were debating between two players: Chad Mottola -- a 20-year-old, power-hitting college junior -- and Derek Jeter, a 17-year-old shortstop out of Kalamazoo, Mich.
Despite the pleas from scout Gene Bennett, Cincinnati passed on Jeter (as did the Astros, Indians, Expos and Orioles) and went with Mottola, hoping for some help in the dinger department. Unfortunately, the outfielder ended up playing a total of 59 Major League games and just 35 with the Reds -- hitting four career home runs. The Yankees nabbed Jeter in the No. 6 spot and you know the rest.
But on Monday, with the 32nd pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, the Reds TOTALLY REDEEMED themselves. Well, kind of.
Yes, Jeter Downs. He's a shortstop, he's a teenager and he's named after the Yankees legend. Scouts say he has good range, a strong arm and above-average power for his size. Is Jeter the next Jeter? Can he form a dynamic duo with two-way player Hunter Greene? Only time will tell.