Canada’s Tristan Pompey was drafted by the Marlins Tuesday in the third round of the MLB draft. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Canadian outfielder Tristan Pompey “pumped” to join Marlins organization

Six years ago, Tristan Pompey tweeted that Marlins Park was a stadium on his must-see list.

He might be able to check that one off soon enough.

The 21-year-old outfielder from Mississauga, Ont., was drafted by the Marlins Tuesday in the third round of the MLB draft. And while Pompey doesn’t remember what prompted that tweet from his 15-year-old self in the first place, it made him chuckle as he retweeted it hours after he was drafted.

“That was six years ago, I honestly have no clue why I wrote it,” Pompey said with a laugh in a phone interview with The Canadian Press. “Someone had brought it up from my archives and I thought, ‘that’s funny.’ It’s funny to think about that now.”

Pompey was the second Canadian chosen in this year’s draft after 18-year-old catcher Noah Naylor, also from Mississauga, went in the first round (29th overall) to the Cleveland Indians Monday night.

Ranked 51st on MLB Pipeline’s Top 200 list heading into the draft, Pompey had expected to hear his name on Day 1, which unveils the first and second rounds of the 40-round selection process. He was picked 89th overall.

“That was the original plan, to go (Monday), that’s what I had heard from teams about where I was supposed to go,” Pompey said. “But at the end of the day it’s the draft and stuff happens and I’m just happy someone gave me the opportunity. It doesn’t matter if it was Round 1 or Round whatever.

“I’m so excited about the opportunity and it’s what you do after the draft that really matters.”

This was Pompey’s second time going through the MLB draft. He was also chosen in the 31st round by the Minnesota Twins out of high school in 2015 but elected to play college ball at the University of Kentucky instead of signing a pro contract.

The six-foot-four switch hitter batted .361 as a sophomore in 2017, leading the Wildcats in on-base percentage (.464). He topped Kentucky’s roster again this season in OBP (.448 OBP) and stolen bases (10), and batted .335 over 50 games.

Pompey was home with his parents and older brother Dalton — a Toronto Blue Jays outfielder who tore a ligament in his thumb during a triple-A game earlier this week — when he got the Tuesday afternoon phone call from the Marlins.

“I wasn’t paying much attention, just waiting for the call, and then I got it and I was pumped,” Pompey said. “I was just excited that they believed in me and wanted to pick me. When I got the call that I was going to Miami, my focus changed to what’s Miami like, that’s all I’ve been thinking about.”

As for having his brother there eight years after watching Dalton go to the Blue Jays in the 16th round, the younger Pompey said that was special, too.

“It was pretty unique because I was there when he got drafted and he was there when I got drafted so it’s a pretty cool experience,” he said. “It only happens once in your life — well, sometimes twice if you’re lucky — but from here on out it’s all about moving forward.”

Pompey said he’s intrigued by the rebuilding Marlins and their farm system, which Baseball America ranked 19th in the majors at the beginning of the year, its highest score since 2013 when it was fifth.

Miami was listed as 29th (second-last in MLB) in both 2016 and 2017.

“Looking into the organization, it’s a good fit for me and an opportunity for me to work my way up through the minor league ranks fast,” Pompey said. ”It’s good that they’re developing their players and bringing them up. If I perform I can shoot through the farm system fairly quickly and hopefully make the big league club in the next few years.”

Pompey is also excited by the Marlins CEO Derek Jeter, the longtime Yankees all-star who once gave Pompey an autograph during a game in Toronto years ago.

“I was a big fan when I was a little kid, I used to wear No. 2 for him and everything,” Pompey said.

“It’s pretty cool to be on his team. I feel like if you’re on Jeter’s team you’re in good hands.”

Just Posted

Red Deer officials will allow Calgary to trial alcohol in parks

The result could determine if local rules are relaxed

Updated: Sylvan Lake council adopts waterfront plan

Sustainable Waterfront Area Redevelopment Plan to guide development for next 20 years

Driver who backed into Red Deer pizzeria sentenced

David Andrew Amstutz sentenced for failing to remain at the crash scene

Shaw getting ready to raise prices for its main residential service, CEO says

CALGARY — Residential customers of Shaw Communications Inc. will likely see a… Continue reading

Inflation accelerates as higher airfares, vegetable prices offset cheaper gas

OTTAWA — Canada’s annual inflation rate accelerated to two per cent last… Continue reading

Fashion Fridays: Inspirational gym outfits

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

High court ruling allows long-term expats to vote in byelections across Canada

Supreme Court decision enfranchised an estimated one million or more Canadian expats to be able to vote

Company issues lifetime ban after man jumps from cruise ship

Nick Naydev posted the video last week showing him standing on the balcony of the Symphony of the Seas

Unruly passenger forces B.C.-bound flight to divert to Calgary

Police say charges are pending against a woman in her 40s

Inflation rises as higher airfares, veggie prices offset cheaper gas

Statistics Canada says inflation accelerated to two per cent in December

Canadian tattoo artist inks Toronto skyline on Blue Jays pitcher Stroman

Marcus Stroman found a way to show his appreciation for Toronto when… Continue reading

Team World sweeps opening day against Team North America at Continental Cup

LAS VEGAS — Team North America has some serious ground to make… Continue reading

SXSW to screen ‘Run This Town,’ which includes Rob Ford character

TORONTO — A drama that features a portrayal of the late Toronto… Continue reading

Fans buy ‘Little House on the Prairie’ star’s memorabilia

GENOA TOWNSHIP, Mich. — More than 200 items belonging to “Little House… Continue reading

Most Read