Boston Red Sox stars before they made it to Major League Baseball
Red Sox D.H. J.D. Martinez:
He grew up in Miami, Florida, where he attended Flanagan High School. He was drafted with the 1086th overall selection in the 36th round of the 2006 MLB Draft by the Minnesota Twins. He decided to not sign but had zero offers to play college baseball. He struggled to even get an opportunity to play for a Division 2 or Division 3 program.
After many tryouts, he ended up getting an offer from Nova Southeastern University, a Division 2 school in South Florida. He enrolled and played baseball for the Sharks, where he thrived.
He exceeded all expectations and finished with a combined .394 batting average and .691 slugging percentage in three seasons. No one has ever hit more home runs than him at Nova Southeastern, totaling 32. He also drove in an absurd 142 runs.
Twice did he have the honor of being an All-Conference Player, despite not being on many radars before the MLB Draft.
He was later selected by the Houston Astros with the 611th pick in the 20th round of the 2009 MLB Draft. He has since become the first baseball player at Nova Southeastern to reach the major leagues. He also has been inducted into the Nova Southeastern University Sports Hall of Fame.