by Tyler Peck, sports information graduate assistant
MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. - The Georgia College & State University baseball program and head coach Tom Carty close out the 2010 recruiting class with the addition of 10 new Bobcats.
Six pitchers, two infielders, two outfielders, and a utility player will join the Georgia College team in 2009-2010.
Shawn Ward - 6-2 195 OF, Martinez, Ga./Middle Georgia College
Shawn led his team to the NJCAA D1 World Series. He broke the school record with 28 doubles while hitting .387 tallying 13 HR and 68 RBI. Shawn earned First Team GJCAA All-Conference season and tournament honors. He was selected by the Seattle Mariners out of high school in the 47th round of the 2006 MLB Draft.
Carty Comments - "Shawn is a very strong athlete who can play both RF because of his arm strength and has enough speed to play CF as well. He is a physical hitter who should help the Bobcats replace some middle of the order power lost from 2009. We are excited about getting Shawn from a winning program like Middle Georgia."
Travis Echols - 6-1 190 Utility, Suwannee, Ga./Young Harris College
Travis helped Young Harris to a 44-12 record. He had 97 hits on the season with 7 HR, 13 2B and 75 RBI. Travis was First Team All-GJCAA Conference player batting .409, slugging .553 and had an OBP of .443.
Carty Comments - "Travis had a great season in a winning program. He has experience playing both infield and outfield so we like his versatility. He has some pop in his bat and we are excited about having Travis join the Bobcats."
Jason Veyna - 5-7 150 IF, Lamar, Colo./Trinidad State Junior College
Jason helped lead Trinidad to a Regular Season Conference Championship and an overall 43-19 record. He hit .401 with 14 2B, 3 3B and 5 HR while driving in 40 runs, walking 41 times and stealing 17 bases.
Carty Comments - "Jason fits our program well. His offensive numbers were all accomplished in a wood bat league. He is solid defensively, can run and hit with a little pop. He is an on-base machine."
Scott Laird - 5-8 170 IF, Visalia, Calif./College of Sequoias
Scott was a First Team All-Central Valley Conference selection and a Gold Glove IF selection. He hit .329 with 20 2B and 2 HR. Scott had .400 OBP while striking out only 14 times. He fielded a .975 while only making six errors on the season.
Carty Comments - "Scott comes from a great baseball state and junior college system. He put up impressive numbers there both offensively and defensively. He will offer even more strength to our infield defense."
Shawn Haley - 6-1 180 OF/RHP, Canton, Ga./Woodstock
Shawn hit .490 with 2 HR, stealing 13 bases. He also went 2-1 on the mound.
Carty Comments - "Shawn is a gifted athlete and will have the opportunity to grow in our program as a position player and pitcher. We are very excited to add Shawn to our freshman class."
Jason Nicholas - 6-2 230 LHP, Warrenton, Mo./St. Louis Community College
Jason went 4-3 throwing 56 innings allowing only 45 hits with 61 K and 24 BB.
Carty Comments - "Jason brings a physical presence on the mound. He has three workable pitches and competes well . He reminds me a lot of a bigger Mike Antonini who pitched here in 2006-2007."
Matt Kaplan - 6-5 245 LHP, Alpharetta, Ga./Pensacola Junior College
Matt was 4-2 in 38 IP with 35 strikeouts and 11 walks.
Carty Comments - "Matt is another very strong physical pitcher who has good command of three pitches. He pitched in a very good junior college program at Pensacola and we are looking forward to working with him here at GCSU."
Brady Kuntzi - 6-3 210 RHP, Springfield, Ill./Lincoln Land CC
Brady pitched 54 innings allowing only 51 hits, striking out 80 all on a 7-3 mark.
Carty Comments - "Brady is a very strong pitcher with good velocity. We think he will help improve the depth of our right handed pitching. Very big upside with his stuff and size."
Ryan Hayine - 6-2 175 RHP, Fayetteville, Ga./Georgia Perimeter College
Ryan along with Bobcat teammate Will Mathis formed two-thirds of the Georgia Perimeter rotation which went on to win the regular season GJCAA Championship. As a Second Team All-GJCAA selection went 6-2 with a 2.64 ERA with 17 BB in 71 IP.
Carty Comments - "Ryan had a very good year at Georgia Perimeter and he knows how to compete and win. He does not beat himself and will really be a good addition to the Georgia College pitching staff."
Brendon Malkowski - 6-6 230 RHP, Schenectady, N.Y./College of St. Rose
Brendon, the only four year school transfer coming to Georgia College, was a rock for the St. Rose pitching staff for three years. After coming off an injury last season, he pitched 69.1 going 4-6 with a 2.73 ERA. He fanned 78 batters while giving up 15 walks.
Carty Comments - "Brendon is a good addition to our staff. He brings frontline starter credentials and a physical presence on the mound. He has the ability to pitch beyond this level and wants to win. We are very excited about having Brendon join the Bobcats for the 2010 season."
The GCSU Department of Athletics, winners of the 2008-09 PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 10 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, GCSU prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the Bobcats' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at Twitter.com username GCSUSID for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit www.GCSUBobcats.com to nominate your favorite former Bobcats and Colonials to the GCSU Athletics Hall of Fame.