CARY, N.C. (WNCN) — Former Holly Springs star Bryan Arendt couldn’t believe the opportunity that was about to come his way.
“I got butterflies because I knew it would be a great honor playing in the MLB Combine knowing that this is the first one and I get to be a part of it,” gushed Arendt.
Just 91 of the best high school baseball players in the nation recently gathered at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary. Scouts from all 30 major league teams as well as several general managers were on hand to evaluate the talent.
“It’s awesome and in the future, some of these guys are going to be great players and it will be good to look back on and know that I was right there side by side with them,” bragged Arendt.
Arendt wrapped up a stellar career at Holly Springs High School under head coach Rod Whitesell. A three-year starter behind the plate, Arendt was a mainstay for the Golden Hawks. His defense has caught the eye of the scouts and now he may have the chance to go straight to professional baseball.
“We’ve seen these kids grow up from 12 years old and now seeing them on this field and hopefully get drafted and be big-league players one day, it’s just really a lot of fun,” admitted director of Player Identification Chris Lionetti.
Fun, and a bit nerve-wracking for the players.
“Pressure can sometimes get to you,” said Arendt. “I just try to be in the moment, don’t think about who is here watching just play my game, do what I do and hopefully perform well enough to get drafted.”
The three-day Major League Baseball draft begins on Sunday. Arendt hopes to hear his name called but if not, he’ll head to the beach and suit up for UNC-Wilmington.