Oconee County HS Grad Drafted by New York Yankees
Derek Varnadore from Bishop, Ga., was picked by the New York Yankees during the ninth round of the Major League Amateur Draft Tuesday.
Oconee County High School alumnus and Bishop native Derek Varnadore was drafted by the New York Yankees Tuesday during the Major League Amateur Draft.
Varnadore, who pitched for the Auburn Tigers during his junior and senior college years, was the 307th overall pick. This is the second year that Varnadore has been approached by a major league team. He was picked by the Miami Marlins in summer 2011 during the 17th round, but decided to return for his senior season at Auburn instead.
Stan Fricks, head coach of baseball at OCHS, said Varnadore showed signs of talent early in his high school career.
"When he first started out, he was a freshman, and what really impressed you was even at that age he had a little pop on his fastball," Fricks said. "By the time he was a senior he was 6-foot-3. He really helped us through that season. He would go out and our kids knew he was going to shut the other team down. Sometimes we didn't play as well as we should have because we were depending on him."
Fricks said Varnadore also began receiving some offers during his senior year in high school and freshman and sophomore year at Chattahoochee Valley Community College.
"His senior year he had gotten some interest in some colleges," Fricks said. "He had a couple years left in his eligibility, so we knew his best baseball years were still ahead of him."
Fricks said OCHS officials were excited for Varnadore when they heard Tuesday's announcement and wish him luck.
"I was ecstatic," Fricks said. "It was great for him. We can't tell you how happy we are for him."