Tulane's Kody Hoese has celebrated homers 21 times this year (Tulane Athletics)


Golden Spikes Spotlight: Tulane’s Kody Hoese

Tulane third baseman Kody Hoese leads Division I with 21 home runs, but his success this season is beyond surprising.

In fact, it almost never happened.

Hoese, now 21, hit just .213 with no homers in 44 games as a freshman, most of them at shortstop. As a sophomore, he moved to third base full-time and improved his OPS from .566 to .803 with five homers. He was draft eligible as a sophomore that year, and the Kansas City Royals selected him in the 35th round.

“It was a tough decision – I was pretty close to signing,” Hoese said. “Playing pro baseball has always been my dream.”

But Hoese – a Finance major and the son of an accountant – crunched the numbers and decided that the Royals’ offer wasn’t royal enough.

He came back to Tulane and has simply exploded, hitting .417/.500/.881, ranking second in the nation with a 1.381 OPS. He leads the American Athletic Conference in all those and many other categories, and he ranks among the national leaders, too.

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