SEATTLE (AP) — In the past year, Braden Bishop became one of the top baseball prospects in the Pac-12 Conference through his play at Washington and gained notice for his efforts to help raise Alzheimer’s awareness after his mom was diagnosed with the disease at age 54.
His baseball dreams reached a new pinnacle on Tuesday after he was selected in the third round of the Major League Baseball draft by the Seattle Mariners.
“It was really exciting. It’s an honor to be picked at all in the MLB draft. I definitely don’t take that lightly and to be chosen by a team I’m familiar with and right here in town is an honor and I’m really, really thankful,” Bishop said.
Bishop was the first of Seattle’s selections on the second day of the draft — No. 94 overall. Bishop was a first-team all-Pac-12 selection last season after hitting .295 with four homers and 25 RBIs in 49 games. He was also a defensive ace in the outfield, twice being named to the Pac-12 all-defensive team.
Bishop said he’s looking forward to trying to disprove critics who said his offensive game will suffer at the pro level.
“I have heard a lot and through the draft process been made pretty public that I have a weak bat but I’ve never believed that,” he said.
But for all his accomplishments on the field, Bishop has gained just as much attention this past year for his efforts with Alzheimer’s awareness after his mom, Suzy, was diagnosed with early-onset. Only 5 percent of Alzheimer’s patients are diagnosed with early-onset.
Bishop said he is looking to put together a charity softball game this September to raise funds for Alzheimer’s awareness.
“It’s very important to me. My mom is my biggest advocate,” Bishop said. “It’s tough to see her struggle but it definitely puts things in perspective for me. If I struggle, I know it’s much tougher for her.”