As the draft party around him sat in dead silence, D.J. Peterson let out a primal yell and wrapped a bear hug around little brother, Dustin.
There he goes again. Always ahead of the curve.
A live MLB Network feed in his ear gave Peterson the news which hit the airwaves five seconds later: He had been drafted by the Seattle Mariners with the No. 12 overall selection in Thursday’s Major League Baseball draft.
Tears of joy streamed down the former Gilbert High star’s face as he became the highest East Valley player to get selected since former Desert Vista catcher Corey Myers went No. 4 overall to the Diamondbacks in 1999.
“I heard my name and I didn’t know how to react at first,” Peterson said. “Then the emotions started hitting me. I was like, ‘Wow’. My little brother heard it too and he started getting pumped. It was one of the best moments of my life.”
Peterson, a third baseman, was chosen in the 33rd round of the draft out of high school, also by the Mariners, but opted for college. He excelled at New Mexico and capped a storybook career by hitting .408 with 18 homers and 72 RBIs this season.
Even though he was the 12th overall player selected, the wait of more than an hour had Peterson perspiring. Once he heard his name, the relief washed across his face.
“It was tough," Peterson said. "I'm sweating, it's hot in there, I've got 100 people. It was tough to wait, but at the same time, it all worked out. Everything played out as it should. I went to a team I really wanted to go to."
Dustin, a star shortstop for the Tigers this year, is also expected to be taken sometime Thursday in the draft’s first two rounds.