Roster Updates - Fall 2017

New Fall Roster posted and we find out who made it in and who left:

Returnees:

  • Seniors: INF Cooper Coldiron, INF Connor Hollis, RHP Joey Pulido
  • Juniors: C/INF Joe Davis, INF Rey Fuentes, UTL Grayson Padgett, RHP Nolan Bond, RHP Aaron Fletcher, RHP Mitch Ullom, LHP Trey Cumbie
  • Sophomores: C Charlie Bartlett, C Nick Slaughter, INF Wendell Champion, INF Jared Triolo, OF Landon Etzel, RHP Hunter Edwards, RHP Carter Henry, RHP Dylan Lester, RHP Fred Villarreal, LHP Tyler Bielamowicz, LHP Brayson Hurdsman, LHP David Kanada, LHP/INF Lael Lockhart, LHP Jared Pettitte

Additions:
Transfers:

  • RHP Kyle Ott (Sr) from Baylor: Ott was a reliever for 3 years in Waco. He isn’t overpowering, but is pretty good at limiting hits. His biggest issue up until now is his walks; last year he walked 20 in 36 innings. Still, he’s a guy with good experience that should help the staff in the Spring.

  • RHP Spencer Juergens (Jr) from Jefferson College: Juergens was a workhorse for Jefferson last year as he tallied the most innings on a very good staff while going 8-4 in 13 starts and racking up 2 complete games. Juergens seems like a ground-ball pitcher with good control as he only gave up 2 HR and only walked 19; fits the prototypical Coog pitching profile. He’ll be in the mix for one of the starting spots.

  • INF Zach Needham (Jr) from Edmonds CC. Needham was drafted in the 40th round by the Seattle Mariners, but chose to come to Houston. He was the NWAC MVP last year after hitting .373 (5th) with 10HR (1st) and 55 RBIs (1st). He was primarily a SS/3B and will probably fill Jake Scheiner’s spot.

  • C Tucker Redden (Jr) from Angelina College. Redden played at 2 schools before arriving at UH as he played for Ranger College his freshman year. Redden hit .337 last year with a .410 OBP and only struck out 13 times in 189 plate appearances. Redden’s history shows that he’s going to go up there swinging and probably make good contact. Redden did throw out 13 runners last season which led the league, but he also allowed 22 runners to steal bases which was 9th most. Redden should be competing for the open catcher spot.

  • RHP Ryan Randel (Jr) from Orange Coast College. Randel was a tweener as he made a few starts and worked out of the bullpen for OCC last year. He did go 7-4 with 4 saves in 18 appearances last year while only allowing 10 walks in 54.2 IP and posting a 3.46 ERA. Randel did come up big in a clutch start to even up their Super Regional series as he gave up one run and four hits in a complete game. Pitched really well down the stretch as a starter so it’ll be interesting to see if the coaches give him a chance there.

  • OF Josh Elvir (Jr) from Angelina College. Elvir was a teammate of Tucker Redden and put together a monster season hitting .404 with 11 HR and 39 RBI. He also slugged 11 doubles and 4 triples on the season while leading the league in slugging percentage (.737). He was also 2nd in OBP at an eye-popping .528. Elvir should be in the mix in the OF.

Freshmen:

  • RHP D’Mond Lafond from Refugio. Lafond was probably the top prospect of this class and should have been drafted. Perfect Game has him as the 132nd best prospect of last year’s class, the 4th best player out of Texas, and had him as a 3rd Team All-American. Lafond was named to the 2A All-State team as a senior. Tall, athletic, good fastball, and a 2 sport star for Refugio, the only thing that scouts may have soured on was him missing his junior year due to TJ surgery. My guess is the coaches will give him every chance to compete for a starting spot immediately.

  • LHP Clay Aguilar from Deer Park. Aguilar was the Texas 6A Co-Player of the Year this past season as he led Deer Park to the 6A title while also making the All-state team again as a 1B. There isn’t much scouting info out there about him, but article after article mentions how clutch he was during the playoffs.

  • 1B/DH Ronald Brown from Bellaire. Brown was arguably the leader of a Bellaire team that returned to the playoffs after surprisingly being absent from them the year before. Brown is a grinder as the coach described him as someone who was willing to do anything for the team whether it be pitching or playing in the field. Last year, he primarily played 1st/3rd, but has also played the middle infield spots in the past. There isn’t much scouting info on him, but he has a stocky frame (5’11" 212 lbs) that should allow for some power.

  • INF Trent McMeans from Dulles. Perfect Game has McMeans rated as the 216th best prospect in Texas and 40th best SS while also naming him an Honorable Mention Texas Region.

  • C Kyle Lovelace from Hudson. Perfect Game has Lovelace as the 109th best prospect in Texas and the 16th best catcher in the state as well as 2nd Team All-Texas region. He was 21-4A MVP last year and had been a 2-time district Defensive POY (would have had it a 3rd time, but won MVP instead). Kid is a defensive wiz behind the plate as I think I had seen that he had thrown out over 50% of runners going on him. He also hit .355 with 10 doubles as a senior. I believe he and McMeans were teammates during Fall/Summer.

  • RHP/OF Drew Minter from Clear Springs. Perfect Game has Minter as the 39th best prospect from Texas and 11th best OF as well as 1st Team All-Texas region. Prep Baseball Scouting Report: 6-foot-1, 195-pound athletic frame. Solid set-up at the dish with smooth load and good bat speed. Shows flashes of power taking good swings on fastballs. Entered game in relief working 90-91 mph with fastball from a short, high-¾ slot. Aggressive delivery with a quick arm at foot strike. Solid breaking breaking ball ranging from the low-to-mid 70’s with 11-5 shape. Minter was a 24-6A 2nd Team 1B in 2016 and was HM 1B this past year.

  • LHP Griffin Hattingh from Clements. Perfect Game has Hattingh as the 106th best prospect in Texas and the 13th best LHP while also adding him to the 2nd Team All-Texas Region team. Hattingh was 20-6A 2nd Team all-district the last two years.

  • RHP Trevis Sundgren from Silsbee. Perfect Game has Sundgren as the 84th best prospect in Texas and the 25th best RHP while also naming him to the 2nd Team All-Texas Region team. Sundgren was a 3rd Team All-State 3B as a junior and an honorable mention 3B as a senior.

  • INF Tyler Littlefield from Long Beach, CA. Perfect Game has him as the 320th best prospect from California and the 65th best SS. The Reds drafted him in the 38th round, but he chose to attend UH. Even though he was drafted, I can’t find much info on the kid as far as a scouting report.

  • INF Ian McMillan from Scottsdale, AZ. Perfect Game rated him as the 64th best prospect from Arizona and the 17th best IF. McMillan became sort of famous in 2011 when he selflessly gave a ball that he got at a Diamondbacks game to another kid after he thought the ball was intended for the other kid. Perfect Game’s scouting reports of him have him as a solid prospect with good fundamentals.


Departures
Drafted

  • OF Corey Julks
  • RHP John King
  • 3B Jake Scheiner
  • C Connor Wong
  • (technically RHP Seth Romero)

Left during season

  • IF Jacob Barfield
  • RHP Cody Erikson
  • LHP Kyle Fowler

Left during offseason

  • OF John Grimsley (Jr)
  • IF Brett Harris (So)
  • IF Jordan Monacy (So)
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The big takeaway going into this year is the large amount of stability compared to the previous year when I believe only 11 returned. This year, 24 return while the team welcomes 16 into the fold…which leads into the 2nd takeaway.

Roster limit for the season is 35 so 5 of those listed above won’t be with the team when the season starts. They are allowed to carry more than 35 until February so there will be competition for some spots going on in the fall.

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