The movie starring the late Bernie Mac was the first thing that used to pop into Leugim Castillo's head whenever he thought about the Milwaukee Brewers.
That changed around 1:20 p.m. Wednesday when the Brewers turned Castillo's dream of being a Major League Baseball draft pick into reality.
The Brew Crew selected the Lancaster High School baseball star during the final day of the annual MLB Draft. Milwaukee nabbed the powerful, yet swift Castillo in the 17th round with the 504th overall selection.
"I feel like a new man," Castillo said in an interview with The News after his selection. "One of my dreams just came true.
"Mr. 3000, that's one of the first movies I remember so it's weird getting drafted by that team."
It's not so weird that Castillo, whose nickname is LG, became the sixth scholastic standout from Western New York to be selected by a big-league club over the past five years.
Castillo, the Buffalo News Prep Talk Awards Player of the Year in baseball, hit .588 with nine home runs, 26 RBIs, 10 stolen bases and received nine intentional walks during the just completed season with the Legends. The 17-year-old, who graduates later this month, had .622 on-base percentage and a 1.028 slugging percentage.
Castillo, a three-sport athlete who also earned first team All-Western New York in football for his skills as a wide receiver, helped Lancaster win the Section VI Class AA title in 2016 and reach the semifinals this past season. In fact he helped the Legends reach Section VI finals in three sports starting with baseball last season, football in the fall and basketball last winter – with Castillo having a big hand in football capturing its first championship since 1999.
The All-WNY baseball selection also participated in the USA Baseball Tournament of Stars last June.
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Castillo, whose Division I suitors included Florida, Miami (Fla.) and LSU, signed a full-ride scholarship to attend University of Oklahoma. He was in a win-win situation regardless of how the three-day MLB Draft, which began Monday, turned out.
It's for that reason he was calm and collected throughout the process, which can be a stressful occasion for some – especially when talents ranked in the top 200 prior to the draft find themselves still on the board after more than 300 selections. Castillo wasn't among the top 200 prospects, according to MLB.com, but was MaxPreps' preseason top prospect in New York State.
In addition to being able to hit tape-measure home runs, he runs the 40-yard dash in 4.3 seconds – something that did catch the attention of a few football coaches at the schools courting him for his baseball talents, he said.
"LG is the prototypical professional prospect," said Clarence coach Dave Smith, who had pitching prospect and Red Devils alumnus Mark Armstrong get drafted by Cincinnati in the third round in 2013. "It's a lot more than he puts up good numbers. There are guys every single year who have high averages and hit home runs, but professional athletes look and do the things that LG does. That makes him standout in a crowd."
After Castillo received the head's up from one of his advisors that the Brewers were about to select him, he made sure he didn't miss the moment his name was announced during the draft telecast on satellite radio.
"It's been pure blessings one after the other," Castillo said. "I'm thankful for my mom (Ana), dad (Jose), step dad (Jose Miguel) and my coaches (baseball, football, basketball). The whole Lancaster community has been behind me and I'm happy I can return the favor with something like this."
The other area high school standouts drafted the past five years are Canisius' Dan Dallas (San Diego, 2016), Lockport’s Nick Hamilton (2015, Boston), Orchard Park’s Dave “Bubba” Hollins (2014, Detroit), Clarence’s Armstrong and Amherst’s Jonah Heim (2013, Baltimore).
While Bernie Mac's character of Stan Ross was fictional one, the Brewers undoubtedly hope Castillo develops into someone who could someday become a real-life Mr. 3000 – just like Hall of Famers Robin Yount and Paul Molitor.
There is a possibility he could turn pro depending on the signing bonus Milwaukee is able to offer him based on what the club has left in its allotment pool. While players selected in rounds one through 10 have approximate bonus values assigned that count toward a team's bonus allotment, those selected in rounds 11-4o only count toward the bonus pool should the prospect sign for more than $125,000. The Brewers have the sixth-most bonus money allotment this season, per MLB.com.
The sides have until the end of the month to strike a deal.
For now, Castillo's living the dream.
"This is the happiest day of my life!" he tweeted.
This is the Happiest Day of my life!! https://t.co/iCufpz64R8
— ElMayimbe (@CastilloLG21) June 14, 2017
— MLB Draft Tracker (@MLBDraftTracker) June 14, 2017