FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
JONESBORO, Ark. (11/20/08) – ASU head baseball coach Tommy Raffo has announced the signing of six players who will join the Arkansas State baseball team for the 2010 baseball season. Four freshman and two junior college transfers have signed to play for the Red Wolves and will join the team in fall 09.
“I would like to commend the efforts of assistant coaches Chris Cook and Justin Meccage for a quality early signing period for ASU Baseball,” said Raffo.
“We had three goals in mind going into the early signing period,” continued Raffo. “First, we wanted to find young men that show a passion, toughness, and a ‘want’ to play for ASU Baseball. Second, we wanted to create a balance for future Red Wolf teams by recruiting left handed hitters and left handed pitchers. Third, each young man we recruit must be able to compete and win in the Sun Belt quickly. With the new NCAA 35-man roster limit, it is crucial that we only recruit and sign the ‘Best 35’ to help ASU competitively vie for the Sun Belt conference championship year-in and year-out. We feel that that these young men give us a great recruiting base for the 2010 team.”
A native of Memphis, Tenn., Michael Faulkner is a 5-10, left handed centerfielder. Faulkner is the fourth best high school prospect in the state of Tennessee as named by Perfect Game. He is also listed as a three star high school prospect by Baseball America. Faulkner batted .431 his junior year at Germantown High School under head coach Joey Nesbit and played travel ball for APAK and head coach Alvin Rittman.
“Mike is a very talented and highly rated left-handed outfielder who will help this club with much needed team speed,” said Raffo. “His skills are tailored for Tomlinson Park and Kell Field.”
Ryan Emery comes to ASU from Franklin, Tenn., where he attended David Lipscomb High School. Emery batted .454 as a junior under head coach Ernie Smith and earned All-State honors in 2007. Emery is a 5-11 left-handed batter who can play the infield or the outfield. Emery also played travel ball for the Brentwood Bulldogs under head coach Chandler Gannick.
“Ryan is a quality ballplayer that can play multiple positions while providing outstanding offensive potential as a left-handed hitter,” added Rafffo. “He can play third base or second and play the outfield.”
Thomas Lundborg joins the Red Wolves from Brentwood Academy in Nashville, Tenn., where he played for head coach Buddy Alexander. Although injured in 2008, the 6-2 left-handed hitting catcher batted .325 in 2007 with 23 RBI’s and two home runs. He is listed as a prospect from the state of Tennessee by Perfect Game.
“Thomas is a switch-hitting catcher that can really defend behind the plate,” commented Raffo. “His defensive skills can contribute early in his career.”
One of the top 25 high school players in the State of Missouri, Logan Uxa comes to ASU from Ladue Horton Watkins High School. In 2008, he batted .508 with a .640 on base percentage with 34 runs, 33 hits and 23 RBI’s for head coach John Goble. The 6-3 left handed hitting outfielder also played travel ball with the St. Louis Pirates coached by Rick Strickland.
“Logan is very athletic and is another excellent left-handed hitter that plays outfield or first base and can pitch,” said Raffo.
Arkansas State also signed a pair of junior college pitchers. Wesley Dagestad will transfer to ASU from Forest Park Community College where he is coached by Mason Horne and is listed as the seventh-best junior college player in the state of Missouri by Perfect Game. At 6-4, 210 pounds, the left-handed pitcher will add size to the ASU pitching mound.
“Wes is a physical left-handed pitcher who we feel will help us immediately in 2010,” said Raffo. “He has good arm strength and is a strong competitor on the mound. He has a quality three pitch mix that will be a factor in the Sun Belt.”
Left-handed pitcher Andres Caceres will join ASU after helping Connors State College (Okla.) to the junior college world series last season. The highly recruited 6-3 native from Queens, N.Y. comes out of the same junior college program that produced current ASU players Derrick Coleman and Kyle DeGrace.
“Andres was a highly recruited left-handed pitcher from a quality junior college baseball program, Connors State, led by Coach Perry Keith,” added Raffo.