6 things to know about San Diego Padres draft pick Eric Yost of Northeastern University

Eric Yost pitching
Eric Yost. Photo by Jim Pierce/Northeastern Athletics

It was 115 degrees on Tuesday in Peoria, Arizona, the spring training home of the San Diego Padres. But Eric Yost didn’t mind the heat. After all, he was there to sign his first professional baseball contract.

A 6-foot-1, 190-pound right-handed pitcher for Northeastern University the past three seasons, Yost was selected by the San Diego Padres in the 17th round of last week’s MLB Draft.

A native of Ossining, New York, Yost is the 59th Northeastern baseball player to be drafted and 12th since 2019. This spring, he went 6-1 with a 3.61 ERA, striking out 57 batters and walking just 14 in 78⅔ innings as the Huskies advanced to the NCAA tournament.

Eric Yost pitching

Eric Yost

2023 pitching statistics:


Northeastern Global News spoke to Yost about his collegiate career, the draft process and what his future holds as a professional athlete. The conversation has been edited for brevity and clarity.

Where were you when you learned that the Padres had drafted you?

I was playing in the Cape Cod Baseball League with the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox. We were actually at the field. It was about an hour before the game and a bunch of guys on the team were watching the draft, hoping to hear their names. 

My adviser called me and said the Padres would be taking me with their 17th-round pick. I’m just super excited and happy for the opportunity. Getting drafted had been my goal and I just kept working toward it. 

Once it actually happened, it felt surreal. And it still feels surreal that I’m playing in the San Diego Padres organization. All of the people reaching out and saying congratulations is also surreal—just knowing I have that many people supporting me.

Was it a difficult decision to turn pro?

Baseball is something I’ve been doing my whole life and getting drafted was my goal. So, once I had that opportunity, I don’t think I could’ve passed it up. You never know what may happen next year. I had a great support system with my family, coaches, teammates and people close to me. 

Coach (Mike) Glavine was super supportive. He called me about an hour after the draft and told me congratulations. He wished me the best with whatever decision I made. He was really helpful throughout my whole career and I can’t thank him enough for everything he’s done for me.

What do you know about the Padres?

My former Northeastern teammate, Thomas Balboni, was drafted by the Padres last year so I know a little bit about them and their system. Tom is someone I’ve been talking to a lot, learning how pro baseball works and everything. 

But in the short time I’ve been here in Arizona, I’ve learned a lot too. Just the amount of technology and resources they have available for the players is unbelievable. That’s going to be good for my development as a pitcher.

What are your plans for the rest of the year? Will you be assigned to a minor-league team?

They haven’t told me. When I decided to sign, I had to book a flight to Arizona within three or four days. I’m probably going to stay here at the complex for a while and throw bullpens with the coaches. I’ll have the opportunity to learn from them and see what they think I can improve on. 

How would you describe yourself as a pitcher—strengths and weaknesses? 

I’m someone who attacks the strike zone with all my pitches and won’t give free bases away, won’t give hitters any free passes. I’m just going to attack with everything I have and let them beat me. I’m not going to beat myself. 

At the same time, I know I can get stronger and add more velocity to all my pitches. A good changeup is also something that I’ve been working on, but overall there’s a lot I can improve upon.

Recap your baseball career, including another NCAA berth with Northeastern

It’s been a long journey, starting when I was probably 5 or 6 years old. I spent a lot of hours playing Little League, summer ball, high school and college. I’ve played on a lot of different teams with a lot of different people. It’s just been a crazy journey and I’m so grateful where it ended up.

This past season was awesome. We had a great group of guys and had a lot of success. As a pitcher, I’m excited for what I learned this year and how it’ll help me at the next level.

David Nordman is executive editor of Northeastern Global News. Follow him on Twitter @davenordman.