BLOOMINGTON — John Rave's Saturday afternoon turned "pretty surreal" when the Boston Red Sox selected the Central Catholic High School senior in the 35th round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
"Every high school kid playing wants to hear or see his name on board in the draft," said Rave. "Fortunately mine came up in the 35th round."
Rave, who was chosen as a center fielder with the 1,048th overall pick, admitted Boston was among the teams that heavily scouted him this season.
"I definitely say they were at the top of the interest list; they probably showed the most," he said. "There were other teams on board, but the Red Sox were most in contact."
Rave has signed to play at Illinois State and will have to weigh his options in deciding whether to attend college or sign a pro contract.
"Signing (with the Red Sox) would be great. But it's a business and I don't know if the money is going to be there to forgo playing at ISU," he said. "It's borderline, but we'll see how it all plays out in the next few days."
Rave hit .429 with four homers and 34 RBIs this year for the Saints, earning first-team all-Corn Belt Conference honors. He totaled 19 extra-base hits to go with 10 stolen bases.
"I thought it went great," he said of his senior season. "I just tried to keep my mind away from all the scouts being at the games. I just focused on the games and having fun with my buddies."
Central finished its season at 23-13 after reaching the championship game of the Class 2A St. Thomas More Sectional. Rave had four hits and three RBIs with a two-run homer in the sectional semifinal.
"I thought our team played great making it to the sectional championship," he said. "I couldn't be more proud of all the guys and I know we're all ready to continue our careers."
Rave will be among Central's representatives on the Intercity squad in Sunday's Pantagraph All-Star Game at Horenberger Field.
"I can't wait. I think it will be a lot of fun," he said. "I know everyone on the Intercity team and a lot of guys on the Area. We're all excited for one last go around before we go off our separate ways."
ISU's Ramirez to Rays: ISU senior catcher Jean Ramirez was selected in the 28th round by the Tampa Bay Rays and was the 840th overall selection.
Ramirez, a native of Fort Worth, Texas, had a .271 average this season. He started 52 games and led the team with six home runs to go with 27 RBIs.