University of Texas inks five on first day of early signing

Augie Garrido

AUSTIN, Texas — University of Texas Baseball received National Letters of Intent from five of the top high school student-athletes in the nation on the first day of the early signing period head coach Augie Garrido announced on Wednesday.

“Every year, Coach (Tommy) Harmon proves he can bring in the top recruits in the country,” Garrido said. “He has brought in players that will make can contribute to our success in 2011. Coach Harmon always anticipates where we will need talent in the future and fills in that talent.”

The group included a catcher, an outfielder, two pitchers and a pitcher/first baseman.

All five of the first-day signees hail from Texas. The Horns also added local product Nathan Thornhill, a right-handed pitcher from Cedar Park HS. Trever Teykl is another right-handed pitcher from Central Texas, hailing from Kempner HS in Fort Bend. The Longhorns hit the panhandle to find standout outfielder Dex Kjerstad from Randall HS in Canyon, Texas. The final two players to sign on the first day are products of Southeast Texas – left-handed pitcher and first baseman Kirby Bellow from Nederland and catcher Jacob Felts from Orangefield.

The Longhorns are expected to finalize the paperwork on more recruits before the early signing period ends on Nov. 18.

2009-10 University of Texas Baseball signing class (as of Nov. 11, 2009)

Kirby Bellow – LHP/1B – Nederland, Texas (Nederland HS)

Jacob Felts – C – Orangefield, Texas (Orangefield HS)

Dex Kjerstad – OF – Canyon, Texas (Randall HS)

Trevor Teykl – RHP – Fort Bend, Texas (Kempner HS)

Nathan Thornhill – RHP – Cedar Park, Texas (Cedar Park HS)

Kirby Bellow – LHP/1B – Nederland, Texas (Nederland HS)
• Earned District 20-4A Most Valuable Player as a junior
• Led Nederland to a 25-9 record and a regional final appearance
• Starting QB at Nederland
• Named District 22-4A Newcomer of the Year in football in 2007
• Passed for 1,707 yards and 18 TDs as a junior

Quote from recruiting coordinator and associate head coach Tommy Harmon: Kirby is a two-way guy. He’s very good defensively at second base. He is also a good left-handed pitcher that will probably project into relief role along with first base. He has a nice stroke and has power. Defensively, he’s ready to play now. He’s the quarterback of their football team. He got hurt the first or second game, but we expect him to be fine.

Jacob Felts – C – Orangefield, Texas (Orangefield HS)

• Named Second-Team Class 3A All-Texas by the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association as a junior
• Named First-team Class 4A All-Texas by the Texas Sports Writers Association as a junior
• Named 2009 Preseason High School Underclassman All-American Honorable Mention by Perfect Game USA
• Member of the 2009 Texas Rangers Area Code Team
• Participated in the 2009 Under Armour All-American Game at Wrigley Field
• Named one of the Top 10 players in Orange County by The Orange Leader as a junior
• Hit .471 with six home runs and 38 RBI as a junior
• Ranked as the 152nd best player eligible for the 2010 draft by Perfect Game Cross Checker

Quote from recruiting coordinator and associate head coach Tommy Harmon: Jacob is a catcher that plays with more energy than anybody I’ve ever seen. He has a strong arm, quick release, and good power. When he gets refined a little bit he’s going to be good.

Dex Kjerstad – OF – Canyon, Texas (Randall HS)
• Named 2009 Preseason High School Underclassman All-American Honorable Mention by Perfect Game USA junior
• Member of the 2009 Texas Rangers Area Code Team
• Named the Amarillo Globe News Super Team Player of the Year in 2009
• Hit .516 with 46 runs, eight home runs and 51 RBI as a junior.

Quote from recruiting coordinator and associate head coach Tommy Harmon: Dex is a strong, physical guy. He is a guy that’s going to bring some power to the lineup. He is a very hard-nosed player.

Trevor Teykl – RHP – Fort Bend, Texas (Kempner HS)
• Named District 23-5A Newcomer of the Year in 2008
• Member of the 2009 Texas Rangers Area Code Team

Quote from recruiting coordinator and associate head coach Tommy Harmon: Trevor is a big, strong guy. He has the potential to be in the mid 90’s on his fastball. He needs to get a little better command of the strike zone, but I have a very high feeling for him.

Nathan Thornhill – RHP – Cedar Park, Texas (Cedar Park HS)

• Named 2009 Preseason High School Underclassman All-American Second-Team by Perfect Game USA

• First-team All-District 16-5A as a junior

• Went 5-3 with a 1.80 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 62.1 innings as a junior

• Also batted .316 with six doubles and 14 RBI as a junior

• Was 9-4 as a sophomorez

• Starting QB at Cedar Park

Quote from recruiting coordinator and associate head coach Tommy Harmon: Nathan is a quick arm right hander. He hits the high 80’s, low 90’s, and has a good breaking ball. He throws strikes and is a leader type. He’s the quarterback on their football team. He’s a solid guy that’s mature enough to pitch as a freshman.