BE’s Daniel Brooks to play baseball for College of Charleston
It was as if Daniel Brooks clicked his baseball cleats three times and said, “There’s no place like home.”
Brooks, a rising junior at Bishop England who has played at some of the top venues in the South as a member of the Canes travel team, decided to stay home when it comes time to matriculate in 2022. The 6-foot-6, 235-pound first baseman/pitcher recently committed to play for the College of Charleston. He’s no stranger to the Cougars’ home field. He has played in their stadium during elite showcase tournaments.
Brooks’ family is very supportive of his baseball endeavors, and the College of Charleston will be just a short drive.
“It will be good for me to be close to home,” Brooks said. “It’s good for them as well. They’re probably more excited than me.”
Bishop England coach Mike Darnell says Brooks heading to the CofC is a natural fit.
“When Danny and I spoke about it he said he felt really comfortable with the coaches and the campus,” Darnell said. “I think the fact that he has played a ton of tournaments at CofC definitely helped with his comfort level. It is nice to see local guys stay in town. It is nice for us as coaches to be able to see our former players more often, and I know it makes his family happy that he will remain close to home.”
Brooks is a big target at first base because of his size, and his doctor feels he can add an inch or two to his frame. First base was the position he was projected to play early in his career. But he’s developed as a pitcher. The right-hander throws a fastball that should register in the 90s by the time he graduates. He still has two years to mature and become stronger. He also is refining two other pitches, a curveball and changeup, to complete his arsenal of pitches. His development on the mound was a pleasant surprise for Darnell as his team marched to yet another state title in May.
“Coach (Bill) Collier and I spoke a lot this year about how much Danny has improved as a pitcher,” Darnell said. “I think everyone here has always viewed Danny as a hitter. I believe he has tremendous upside at both positions. I think which one he ends up doing is still yet to be determined. He is such a big kid that the potential is almost limitless.”
Either way, Brooks shined any time he was on the diamond as he helped the Bishops win their third consecutive Class AAA state championship.
He pitched in 10 games and compiled a 2-1 record with a 1.45 ERA and 1.10 WHIP. He scattered 29 hits and struck out 40 batters in 43 1/3 innings.
He batted .263 with a .295 slugging percentage. He hit a homer and drove in 18 runs.
Brooks is committed to the CofC, but his official signing day won’t come until November 2021. He knows some athletes hit their ceiling because they don’t work as hard. But he’s not one of them.
“I’ll just keep doing the same things I’ve been doing,” he said. “I want to win and get better. I won’t slow down.”