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Hoosiers Sign Trace Knoblauch to NLI

TracySmithBLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Indiana baseball team has announced that Trace Knoblauch has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Hoosiers in the fall of 2009. Knoblauch, a 6-foot-4, 215-pound first baseman and outfielder, is currently in his third year with Bellaire High School in Houston, Texas, playing under Rocky Manuel.

“Trace has been a leader of one of the best baseball programs in the country, and he has a strong baseball pedigree,” IU Head Coach Tracy Smith said. “He is a power hitter who can drive the ball to all fields, and with his size, he could become a big-time player in the Big Ten. He’s also a young man who is gifted academically, so we know he’ll be a great addition to the university as a whole as well as to our team.”

Knoblauch comes from a baseball background, as he is the third generation of Knoblauchs to coach or play for Bellaire High School. The team plays on Ray Knoblauch Field, named after Trace’s grandfather, who was the longtime coach of the team. Ray and his brother Eddie Knoblauch both had long careers in the Texas League, and Trace’s uncle, Chuck Knoblauch, played 12 years in the major leagues and was a four-time all-star who finished his career with 407 stolen bases.

Knoblauch is currently hitting .450 with five home runs and 30 RBI. He is the team captain of a Bellaire squad that is ranked second in the nation by Baseball America at 20-1-1. The state playoffs are set to begin next week.

The switch-hitting Knoblauch has been invited to the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association All-Star Team as a first baseman. He is the only Bellaire player and the only player from his district to be selected for the squad. He was also named a Preseason High School All-American heading into this season by Baseball America, and he was given honorable mention on Perfect Game’s Preseason All-America list. He was also named Preseason All-Greater Houston this year.

In 2008, Knoblauch hit .350 with two home runs and 25 RBI on the year. He was named all-district and all-state for his accomplishments as Bellaire was a state semifinalist. He also helped the squad earn an area finalist finish in 2007 as a sophomore.

Knoblauch, who intends to enroll in the Kelley School of Business, has one sister, Hallie. The son of Mark and LuAnn Knoblauch was born on Sept. 13, 1990.

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