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LSU commit Boston Bateman ‘dreaming big’ as MLB draft nears
(Credit: Juan Carlo-USA TODAY NETWORK)

LSU commit Boston Bateman ‘dreaming big’ as MLB draft nears

CAMARILLO, Calif. (BVM) – Boston Bateman has been waiting to hear his name called at the MLB draft for nearly his entire life. Soon, the dream he has worked so hard for will become a reality.

“I’ll feel excitement because I’ve been waiting for that moment since I was 2 years old,” Bateman said about draft night. “But also, I’m going to understand that it’s time. It’s time to achieve my big goals, it’s time to go win a World Series and do all the things that I can to help that club I’m with win it.”

Bateman, a top-50 prospect who is expected to be taken in the early rounds of the 2024 MLB Draft, has already proven his elite talent on the diamond over the last several years. Now, the 6-foot-8, 240-pound left-handed pitcher is using opportunities such as the MLB draft combine to show teams his winning mindset and personality as well.

“I want to show just the kind of person I am,” Bateman said. “Sometimes it’s hard when you’re scouting and you just see the side of me that’s on the mound but you don’t really see my work ethic, my personality and who I really am as a person.”

Boston Bateman Adolfo Camarillo High School Scorpions California 2024 MLB Draft prospect LSU Tigers college baseball
Boston Bateman is ranked as a top-50 MLB draft prospect and is expected to be an early-round selection in July. (Credit: Juan Carlo-USA TODAY NETWORK)

In addition to his talent, it is the work ethic and personality that have put Bateman in position to reach the big leagues sooner rather than later which will be another step in a special baseball journey thus far. 

Bateman played all over as his family moved around when he was young, beginning with little league baseball in Nevada before starting travel ball as he moved to Utah. Bateman almost reached the Little League World Series while playing in Texas during his youth, and had one additional stop in Washington before settling in California before high school. Through it all, the pitcher began to realize his talent, particularly as he pitched a perfect game at just 12 years old where he struck out every batter he faced.

A big part of Bateman’s success during his youth and still today has been his size. Bateman has been bigger than many of his opponents throughout his life, earning him the nickname “Sasquatch” while creating an intimidating left-handed presence on the mound similar to some of his biggest idols like southpaws Clayton Kershaw, Aroldis Chapman and Randy Johnson.

“I can definitely use that to my advantage,” Bateman said. “It’s a little more intimidating, it’s a different angle that hitters don’t usually see … Definitely is an advantage and I definitely try to use it to the best of my ability.”

The big lefty did just that throughout his career at Adolfo Camarillo High School. Bateman was used primarily as a hitter in his first two seasons with the Scorpions rather than a pitcher. While he saw plenty of individual success as did the team as a whole during a deep postseason run in 2021, Bateman ultimately enjoyed the connections he made with his teammates just as much.

“That was an awesome way to start my high school career,” Bateman said. “Those two years were awesome, I got to meet a ton of friends, the people that mean a lot to me.”

Coming off an important summer of travel ball, Bateman flourished during his junior season as he took the mound more often for the Scorpions. Highlighted by a perfect game where he struck out 17 batters, Bateman posted a sub-2.00 ERA with 60 strikeouts.

“That year was when our team started coming together more,” Bateman said. “We didn’t do as well as we wanted to … But it was a good season.”

Bateman and the Scorpions were determined to have a stronger season in 2024, and the lefty had plenty he hoped to accomplish in his final year at Camarillo.

“I had velocity goals, I had team goals, I had a bunch of other personal goals,” Bateman said. “I’m happy to say I pretty much achieved them all.”

By Camarillo’s first game, a contest where Bateman was part of a combined no-hitter, the left-handed hurler already had confidence that the Scorpions could accomplish their biggest goal: winning a CIF Southern Section Division 4 championship.

“Our first game, I had confidence,” Bateman said. “I knew right away that I had a feeling that we were going to make it all the way.”

The Scorpions went undefeated in their league and eventually reached the CIF Southern Section Division 4 championship game, a contest Bateman started and again looked dominant with 11 strikeouts. 

With his team down 1-0 going into the final inning, Camarillo rallied for two runs in the top half of the seventh and held on to the lead for a 2-1 victory.

“That was an awesome experience,” Bateman said. “My coach asked us before the season if we wanted to leave a legacy. We all wanted to leave one and I’d say it’s safe to say we left a legacy at Camarillo High School … That was a moment I won’t forget.”

While Bateman was a catalyst to Camarillo’s title, the singular focus of the entire team was ultimately one of the most important factors to success.

“That’s a big reason why we won, we were all in it together,” Bateman said. “We were in it for Camarillo High School and being able to take a title back.”

Meanwhile, Bateman ended the year with some impressive individual accolades as well, most notably earning CIF Southern Section Division 4 Player of the Year honors as he went 11-1 with a 0.54 ERA and 130 strikeouts. While the awards mean a lot, the Camarillo standout ultimately hopes his impact has gone beyond his play on the diamond.

Boston Bateman Adolfo Camarillo High School Scorpions California 2024 MLB Draft prospect LSU Tigers college baseball
Boston Bateman was named CIF Southern Section Division 4 Player of the Year in his senior season at Adolfo Camarillo High School. (Credit: Juan Carlo-USA TODAY NETWORK)

“I think the most important accolade is how I treated other people on my team and how I treated other people at my school,” Bateman said. “Awards are cool and all, but I can’t do any of that without God and the people that surround me.

“I hope I showed other people how to treat others kindly. I hope I showed them how to be a good teammate, I hope I showed others how to respect the game of baseball. And I hope I showed them what confidence, but also having humility, looks like.”

Now, Bateman will look to do the same wherever he plays next. That could come in Baton Rouge as the pitcher committed to LSU this past October. 

Bateman’s recruiting process began in eighth grade and he originally pledged to join Arizona State at the beginning of his sophomore year. However, he eventually re-opened his recruitment to find a better fit. With around 50 schools contacting him, he narrowed his choices down to four: Georgia, Mississippi State, USC and LSU. Ultimately, the Tigers won out.

“At the end of the day I chose LSU because of the coaches and the people who I want to surround myself with,” Bateman said. “That’s always important, where I can develop the best and hopefully win a national championship, and become the first overall pick in that draft.

“It’s a pretty awesome opportunity and I’m extremely grateful for it.”

If Bateman does play for Jay Johnson as part of the No. 2-ranked recruiting class in the country, he is hoping to bring another national championship to Baton Rouge while also following in the footsteps of one of LSU’s recent stars, Paul Skenes, as the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.

“All the goals that are possible there,” Bateman said about what he hopes to accomplish at LSU. “Win a national championship, make a bunch of friends that will last a lifetime. Just get better every single day and become the first overall pick my junior year.”

Boston Bateman Adolfo Camarillo High School Scorpions California 2024 MLB Draft prospect LSU Tigers college baseball
Boston Bateman hopes to bring another national championship to Baton Rouge if he goes on to play for the LSU Tigers. (Credit: Juan Carlo-USA TODAY NETWORK)

No matter if he attends LSU or goes the MLB route, Bateman is focused on better controlling his body, increasing his velocity and getting stronger. Ultimately, that may just lead him to the lofty goals he has set for himself by the time all is said and done.

“Whether I end up there [LSU] or get drafted, those two roads lead to the same goal with my goal to play in MLB and become a Hall of Famer,” Bateman said. “I’m excited for both opportunities and it’s up to God now.

“My goal is to be a Hall of Famer and be one of the greatest left-handed pitchers to ever play this game. A big thing for me is dreaming big. You only get one time on this earth, so I’m going to live it to my fullest.”

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