Holmen Vikings

MLB prospect Jeren Kendall, father Jeremey sit down with News 8

Holmen senior could be picked early in MLB Draft

MLB prospect Jeren Kendall, father Jeremey sit down with News 8

HOLMEN, Wis. (WKBT) - The Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft starts Thursday, and a Holmen senior is going to hear his name called.

With Major League scouts in attendance, Jeren Kendall stole the show at a showcase in California. Ever since, he's been projected as one of the top 50 players in the country.

In a sit-down interview with News 8, Jeren said 14 teams have come to his house to talk to him in person. He also said there's been a scout at every one of his games in Holmen.

"I'm thinking about it but during this season, it didn't really bother me because I've been through it all fall, too. I had six, seven scouts coming to every game," he said.

Jeren has been influenced deeply by his dad, Jeremey. He played professional baseball in the Phillies organization, making it as high as AA.

"What you see on the field is all him," Jeren said.

"He still has to hit it though," Jeremy joked.

"A Yankee scout asked us, how much is what he does, you? Ever since he was little, he could do this. We were just watching film of him when he was three. I actually was doing underhand toss to him and he was hitting the ball at three."

Jeren said the dynamics between them are great.

"Honestly, he's been the best coach ever, even though he's my dad, too. He's been with me for a long time," Jeren said.

"He's going to be a better player than I ever was," said Jeremey.

All of their hard work is about to pay off.

"First round is where I want to go," Jeren said.

Wherever he goes, he will have a big decision to make. Right now, Jeren is committed to play at SEC powerhouse Vanderbilt in the fall.

"It's going to be one of the biggest decisions of my life," he said.

"Our decision is based on if we want him to miss three years of probably the greatest time of his life to start his career," said Jeremey. "He wants to be a Major League Baseball player. What will it take to do that? You see it more nowadays, where college kids at some of the better conferences in the country are going right to AA, or they're going right to the big leagues. So it's a win-win situation for us."

When that call does come, where will Jeren be?

"Not sitting by a TV. That's number one. That's all I know so far is that I'm not going to be by a TV," Jeren said.

Odds are, he could be doing what he does best: playing baseball. Holmen opens the WIAA postseason Thursday against either Logan or Onalaska.

"They've advised us to just be a normal kid during draft day," Jeremey said, referring to their "adviser," the infamous Scott Boras.

"It's stressful, as you might have watched in the NFL Draft. Johnny Manziel dropping, you could see the stress level on his face. They're glad he has a game."

There is one thing that is certain, however.

"It's going to be a dream come true," Jeren said. "That's for sure."

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