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Diamond Hogs Ink15; Four Ranked in Baseball America Top 100

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Diamond Hogs Ink15; Four Ranked in Baseball America Top 100

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. –– Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn announced the signing of 15 baseball players for the 2009 season to national letters of intent on Tuesday.

The 15-player class features some of the most highly decorated signees in school history, including four players ranked among the Baseball America Top 100. Van Horn, along with recruiting coordinator Todd Butler and pitching Coach Dave Jorn signed three left-handed pitchers, four right-handed pitchers, including Zack Cox who also plays third base. The class includes three outfielders, four infielders and two catchers. The class contains 13 high school players and two junior college players.

“On paper this is one of our better classes,” Van Horn said. “I thought we went out and filled our needs for the next couple of years. We signed some high-profile future professional players, and it will be tough getting some of them on campus. But if we can get a few of them here to mix in with this year’s talented freshman class it is going to be a great combination in the future.”

Van Horn’s success during his tenure in Fayetteville has raised the Hogs visibility on a national scale and paid dividends on the recruiting trail from coast-to-coast. The Razorbacks’ 15-man class comes from 11 different states, stretching from California in the west to Michigan and Kentucky in the east.

“I thought Coach Butler and Coach Jorn did an outstanding job with this class,” Van Horn said. “We have been all over the country putting together this class. If you look at where these kids come from, they are from Arkansas, but there are guys from Michigan, California, Kentucky and Illinois. This program recruits from north to south and coast to coast.”

Below you will find a brief biographical sketch of each of the 15 players in the Razorbacks’ recruiting class and a roster of the new class.

2009 Arkansas Baseball Signees

Kyle Atkins, OF

DeQueen, Ark. (DeQueen)

Kyle Atkins is an athletic and speedy outfielder who coaches believe could develop into a talented leadoff man in the Razorbacks’ future lineups … possesses excellent speed with a 6.50 60-yard dash … named the Outstanding Senior Athlete at DeQueen High School … named to the 2007 Texarkana Gazette All-Area team as a junior … played for the Chicago White Sox in the 2007 Area Code Games … also quarterbacked the Leopards high school football team.

Bo Bigham, INF

Texarkana, Ark. (Arkansas)

Bo Bigham was one of the first players to commit to Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn in January of 2007 … the shortstop out of Arkansas High School in Texarkana led the Razorbacks to the 6A State Championship in 2007 … batted .475 with six home runs, including a solo shot in the state championship game … earned 6A All-State honors as a junior in 2007 … hit .538 as a sophomore in 2006, helping Arkansas High to the 5A State Championship Game … also quarterbacked the Razorbacks 2006 and 2007 6A State Championship football teams.

Bobby Bundy, RHP

Sperry, Okla. (Sperry)

Bobby Bundy is ranked 30th on Baseball America’s 2008 Top 100 College Prospects … the hard-throwing right-hander that can touch 94 mph with an excellent late-breaking slider … posted a 15-2 record with a 0.47 ERA as a junior at Sperry [Okla.] High School … posted 21 strikeouts in 12 innings of work in the 2007 Oklahoma 3A state semifinal game … played for the Chicago White Sox team in the 2007 Area Code games … ranked No. 6 on Baseball America’s 2008 WWBA 17-and-under prospects … ranked as the No. 44 prospect by Perfect Game and is No. 99 on the Perfect Game Crosschecker 2008 Top 300 MLB Draft Prospects, which includes all draft eligible players (high school and college).

Trevor Cousineau, LHP

Davison, Mich. (Davison)

The Arkansas coaching staff went to the state of Michigan to find hard-throwing left-hander hurler Trevor Cousineau out of Davison High School … the 6-foot, 5-inch athletic southpaw was a First-Team All-Big Nine selection as a sophomore and a second-team choice following his junior season … has 177 strikeouts in 148 innings during his high school career.

Zack Cox, 3B/RHP

Louisville, Ky. (Pleasure Ridge Park)

Zack Cox is one of the top two-way players in the country at third base and as a right-handed pitcher … coached by Bill Miller at Pleasure Ridge Park High School in Louisville, Ky. … Cox is ranked as the No. 24 prospect on Baseball America’s 2008 Top 100 College Prospects … he is also ranked as the 19th-best prospect in the nation by Perfect Game … he is No. 73 on the Perfect Game Crosschecker 2008 Top 300 MLB Draft Prospects, which includes all draft eligible players (high school and college) … Cox is a Pre-season All-American by Under Armor and the 2007 Kentucky 6A Player of the Year … selected to participate for the Yankees team in the Area Code Games … earned All-State honors as a sophomore and junior … 2007 Cape Cod Classic Home Run Derby Champion … batted .536 (66 of 123) as a junior with a .638 on-base percentage … drove in 58 runs with 20 doubles, five triples and 10 home runs … posted a 7-1 record on the mound with a 1.34 ERA and 73 strikeouts in 80 innings.

Geoffrey Davenport, LHP

Fort Worth, Texas (Paschal)

Geoffrey Davenport comes to the Razorbacks from Paschal High School in Forth Worth where he played for head coach Stephen Smith … named the District 4-5A Most Valuable Player and was a second-team member of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram “Super Team” … posted an 8-1 record on the mound with a 0.79 ERA in 70 innings of work … held opponents to a .148 batting average while striking out 74 … also batted .418 with a .540 on-base percentage … garnered District 4-5A honorable mention and was selected to the Texas Sunbelt Tournament team as a sophomore in 2006.

Seth Gardner, OF

Dallas, Texas (Highland Park)

Seth Gardner joins teammate Jonathan Pearlman as Razorback signees … Gardner is a speedy outfielder with good size at 6-foot, 4-inches and 190 pounds … hit .372 12 doubles, four triples and four home runs while driving in 39 runs … named the 10-4A Most Valuable Player … third-team 4A All-State outfielder as a junior … batted .360 with a double, triple and home run as a sophomore in 2006 … had six RBI and two stolen bases … also is one of the Scots top wide receivers on the football field with 58 catches for 1,125 yards and 18 touchdowns.

James McCann, C

Santa Barbara, Calif. (Dos Pueblos)

The Arkansas coaching staff ventured to Santa Barbara, Calif., for catcher James McCann … possesses a quality arm behind the plate with good footwork … batted .391 with 23 RBI and a home run in 23 games for Dos Pueblos High School in 2007 … earned first-team All-Channel League and all-county as a junior … selected to play for the Washington national team in the Area Code Games … hit .346 with 18 RBI, six doubles and a home run … garnered first-team All-Channel League as a sophomore in 2006 … is a perfect 9 for 9 in stolen bases in his high school career … an excellent student.

Jerrod McKinney, OF

Hughes Springs, Texas (Hughes Springs)

Jerrod McKinney is a gifted athlete who is considered one of the top prospects in the country … is ranked as the No. 70 prospect on Baseball America’s 2008 Top 100 College Prospects … he is also ranked as the 69th-best prospect in the nation by Perfect Game … is No. 138 on the Perfect Game Crosschecker 2008 Top 300 MLB Draft Prospects, which includes all draft eligible players (high school and college) … a two-time Texas All-State selection … selected to play for the Texas Rangers team in the Area Code Games … batted .556 with seven home runs and 30 RBI as a junior in 2007 … collected 11 doubles and stole 10 bases … also posted a 8-1 record on the mound with a 0.98 ERA and 85 strikeouts in 48 innings … named the District 18-2A MVP and All-East Texas MVP … hit .524 with nine home runs, 20 doubles, 60 RBI and 20 stolen bases as a sophomore in 2006 … All-East Texas Offensive MVP in 2006 and named to the All-State Tournament team.

Jonathan Perlman, INF

Dallas, Texas (Highland Park)

Jonathan Perlman joins high school teammate Seth Gardner at Highland Park High School … an athletic infielder who batted .327 as a junior in 2007 with 17 runs scored, three doubles, two triples, a home run and 10 RBI … also posted a 3-0 mark on the mound with a 2.30 ERA in 24.1 innings with 23 strikeouts … played for the WWBA 17-U National Championship in the summer of 2007 … played for the Texas Rangers team in the Area Code Games … chose Arkansas over Texas, Baylor, TCU and Oklahoma.

Tyler Sample, RHP

Elizabeth, Colo. (Mullen)

Tyler Sample is a physical specimen on the mound at 6-foot, 7-inches and 220 pounds as a junior in high school … the hard-throwing right-hander pitches in the low 90s with an outstanding curveball … is ranked as the 120th-best prospect in the nation by Perfect Game … he is No. 248 on the Perfect Game Crosschecker 2008 Top 300 MLB Draft Prospects, which includes all draft eligible players (high school and college) … ranked No. 10 in ESPN’s Top 25 at the 2007 Area Code Games, which he participated in at Blair Field in Long Beach, Calif. … post a 1-0 record with a 4.73 ERA in 23.2 innings in 2007 with 33 strikeouts … coming off Tommy John surgery in 2006.

Braeden Schlehuber, C

Farmington, Utah (CC of Southern Nevada)

Braeden Schlehuber comes to Arkansas from the Community College of Southern Nevada … he joins teammate Colby Shreve from CCSN and is one of four players to join the Hogs from CCSN over the past three seasons … an excellent defensive catcher with a strong arm and a good receiver … threw out 21-of-51 base runners last season for an impressive .412 caught stealing percentage … batted .242 as a freshman at Southern Nevada where he also played with current Razorback Chase Leavitt … connected for three home runs while driving in 14 … play his high school baseball at Viewmont High School.

Colby Shreve, RHP

Las Vegas, Nev. (CC of Southern Nevada)

Colby Shreve was an eight-round draft pick (258 overall) by the Atlanta Braves in the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft … possesses a low- to mid-90s fastball … signed with UNLV out of high school … posted a 5-2 record as a freshman at Southern Nevada in 2007 with a 2.78 ERA and 59 strikeouts in 58.1 innings … started seven games and appeared in 17 … held opponents to a .220 batting average.

Kendall Wehrle, INF

Papillion, Neb. (Papillion-La Vista South HS)

Head coach Dave Van Horn landed another lauded Nebraska recruit in middle infielder Kendall Wehrle out of Papillion-La Vista South … earned first-team Super State, first-team all-metro and second-team All-Nebraska as a junior in 2007 … batted .484 with 10 doubles, five triples and three home runs to go along with 41 runs scored.

Austin Wright, LHP

Schaumburg, Ill. (Conant HS)

Austin Wright is a highly-sought-after left-handed pitcher out of Conant High School in Schaumburg, Ill. … Wright is ranked as the No. 57 prospect on Baseball America’s 2008 Top 100 College Prospects … he is also ranked as the 37th-best prospect in the nation by Perfect Game … he is No. 72 on the Perfect Game Crosschecker 2008 Top 300 MLB Draft Prospects, which includes all draft eligible players (high school and college) … selected to participate in the Area Code games in 2006 and 2007 … was chosen for the Aflac All-American Classic and pitching one inning in that game … posted a 3-4 mark as a junior at Conant High School with a 3.15 ERA and 68 strikeouts in 40 innings … went 6-2 with a 2.48 ERA and 75 strikeouts in 48 innings as a sophomore in 2006, earning all-conference and Daily Herald all-area honors.

2009 Newcomer Roster

Player Pos. Cl.-Exp Hometown/Previous Schools

Kyle Atkins OF FR-HS DeQueen, Ark./DeQueen HS

Bo Bigham INF FR-HS Texarkana, Ark./Arkansas HS

Bobby Bundy RHP FR-HS Sperry, Okla./Sperry HS

Trevor Cousineau LHP FR-HS Davison, Mich./Davison HS

Zack Cox INF/RHP FR-HS Louisville, Ky./Pleasure Ridge Park HS

Geoffrey Davenport LHP FR-HS Ft. Worth, Texas/Paschal HS

Seth Gardner OF FR-HS Dallas, Texas/Highland Park HS

James McCann C FR-HS Santa Barbara, Calif./Dos Pueblos HS

Jarrod McKinney OF FR-HS Hughes Springs, Texas/Hughes Springs HS

Jonathan Perlman INF FR-HS Dallas, Texas/Highland Park HS

Tyler Sample RHP FR-HS Elizabeth, Colo./Mullen HS

Braeden Schlehuber C JR-JC Farmington, Utah/Veiwmont HS/CC of Southern Nevada

Colby Shreve RHP JR-JC Las Vegas, Nev./ CC of Southern Nevada

Kendall Wehrle INF FR-HS Papillion, Neb./Papillion-La Vista South HS

Austin Wright LHP FR-HS Schaumburg, Ill./Conant HS



Sports Category : Baseball