Joe Dunand, the nephew of MLB great Alex Rodriguez, was drafted by the Miami Marlins with the 51st overall pick in the MLB Draft.
In a video posted to Instagram, Alex Rodriguez celebrated the selection of his nephew with other family members. He mobbed the new member of the Marlins farm system in joy.
Joe Dunand has drawn many comparisons to his uncle. In fact, he was drafted as a shortstop, but he could move to third base. Rodriguez did the same during his MLB career. However, the Marlins would love if he could just be anywhere near the skill of his Hall of Fame bound family.
According to the Miami Herald, the Marlins Scouting Director Stan Meek said “you can see some of A-Rod in him.”
Dunand was a standout at North Carolina State University before being drafted Monday. This season, he hit .287 with 18 home runs and 51 RBI.
Dunand being drafted by the Marlins is a perfect fit with his roots in the area. He was a star for Gulliver Prep in Pinecrest, Florida. Gulliver is just 30 minutes from Miami.
In high school, he set a national high school record by hitting a home run in eight straight at-bats. Miami hopes he can bring that same power to the minor leagues and maybe the big leagues in a few years.
Rodriguez’s nephew is no stranger to the MLB Draft. In 2014, he was drafted by the Cleveland Indians, but elected to stay at NC State. The choice paid off with a much higher place in the draft.
The 2017 MLB Draft was part of a long rebuilding process for the Miami Marlins. They haven’t been to the playoffs since winning the World Series in 2003. As of Tuesday, they sit in 4th in the NL East, 10.5 games behind the Washington Nationals.