Wesleyan's Jones is Gatorade Player of Year

Posted 6/6/2022

Wesleyan's Druw Jones is the 2022 Georgia Gatorade Player of the Year.

 

Gatorade Player of the Year

CHICAGO (June 3, 2022) — In its 37th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Gatorade announced Druw Jones of Wesleyan School is the 2021-22 Gatorade Georgia Baseball Player of the Year. Jones is the first Gatorade Georgia Baseball Player of the Year to be chosen from Wesleyan School. 

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Jones as Georgia’s best high school baseball player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Baseball Player of the Year award to be announced in June, Jones joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners in 12 sports, including Derek Jeter (1991-92, Kalamazoo High School, Mich.), Jon Lester (2001-02, Bellarmine Preparatory School, Wash.), David Price (2003-04, Blackman High School, Tenn.), Clayton Kershaw (2005-06, Highland Park High School, Texas), Rick Porcello (2006-07, Seaton Hall Preparatory School, N.J.) and Kris Bryant (2009-10, Bonanza High School, Nev.).

The 6-foot-3, 185-pound senior outfielder and right-handed pitcher led the Wolves to a 35-5 record and the Class 1A Private School state title this past season. Jones batted .570 with 13 home runs and 39 RBI, amassing an OPS of 1.702 and hitting safely in every game he played this season. He scored 72 runs, swiped 32 bases and drew 33 walks, also posting a 10-1 record on the mound with 53 strikeouts in 41 innings pitched. The nation’s No. 4 MLB Draft prospect according to Baseball America and also the No. 4 recruit in the Class of 2022 as rated by Perfect Game, he was a member of the 2021 Team USA 18U national team. 

Jones has volunteered locally on behalf of the Salvation Army as well as the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Atlanta and on behalf of multiple community service initiatives with his school’s missions program. “Druw Jones is by far the best player I’ve ever seen in high school,” said Ben Drust, head coach at Hebron Christian Academy. “His offensive abilities are obvious, but he just glides across the outfield and turns doubles into routine fly balls. I’ve never seen someone’s bat get on plane so fast and stay on plane and through the zone like his.” 

Jones has maintained a B average in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to play baseball on scholarship at Vanderbilt University this fall, but is projected as an early round selection in July’s Major League Baseball Draft. 

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media and others as sources to help evaluate and determine the state winners in each sport. 

Jones joins recent Gatorade Georgia Baseball Players of the Year Dylan Lesko (2020-21, Buford High School), Jordan Walker (2019-20, Decatur High School), C.J. Abrams (2018-19, Blessed Trinity High School), and Kumar Rocker (2017-18, North Oconee High School), among the state’s list of former award winners. 

Gatorade has a long-standing history of serving athlete communities and understands how sports instill valuable lifelong skills on and off the field. Through Gatorade’s “Play it Forward” platform, Jones has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national organization of their choosing that helps young athletes realize the benefits of playing sports. Jones is also eligible to submit a short video explaining why the organization they chose is deserving of one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants, which will be announced throughout the year. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants have totaled more than $3.5 million across more than 1,300 organizations. 

Since the program’s inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners and educators. 

To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com or follow us on social media on Facebook at facebook.com/GatoradePOY, Instagram at instagram.com/Gatorade and Twitter at twitter.com/Gatorade.