Get to Know New MTSU Baseball Commits

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Signing Day has arrived for the Middle Tennessee baseball team. Head Coach Jim McGuire and staff are proud to announce the signing of seven future Blue Raiders.
Myles Christian|IF/OF|6’2″ 180 Ibs.|L/R|Olive Branch, Miss. /Olive Branch HS|
Christian can play multiple positions, but spends most of his time making plays in the outfield. The Olive Branch, Miss., native is the top-ranked outfielder and No. 2 ranked player in Mississippi according to Perfect Game. Christian is also ranked as the No. 64 outfield prospect in the nation. In addition, he was named as a 2016 All-District Athlete. He hit .317 with 31 runs, 22 stolen bases, 11 extra base hits, and nine RBI as a junior last season for Olive Branch, while also playing for the Memphis Tigers summer ball team. Christian comes from a family of athletes, as his mother (Leslee) played softball and basketball for Cumberland College, while his father (Tony) played basketball for Cumberland as well. His brother Laurence Bowers was a standout basketball player at Missouri and currently plays professionally overseas in Italy, while his other brother, Tony Christian, plays basketball for Kennedy-King College.

McGuire on Christian: “Tremendous athlete. Maybe one the best athletes we’ve ever signed here. He has a pro baseball future ahead of him for sure, and could be an immediate impact as a freshman in the outfield.”
Brett Stratinsky|1B|6’4″ 210 Ibs.|L/R|Palos Hills, Ill. /McHenry County College|
Stratinksy hit .354 with 42 runs, 11 home runs, 12 doubles, 42 RBI, and a .634 slugging percentage at McHenry County College in 2016. His big numbers earned him First-Team All-Conference and Second Team All-Region recognition in 2016, while also being named to the 2016 DII World Series Junior College All-Tournament Team. Stratinksy gets it done not only on the field, but also in the classroom as he received Academic All-American honors last year at McHenry County. His father (Tim) pitched at University of Texas Rio Grande Valley from 1984-85, earning him a spot with the New York Mets Rookie Ball Team in 1986.

McGuire on Stratinsky: “We were looking for an immediate junior college bat and he fits the mold at first base. He has power and handles himself around the bag, we look for him to be a middle of the lineup type bat.”
Brycen Thomas|RHP/1B/C|6’4″ 250 Ibs.|R/R|Columbia, Tenn. /Spring Hill HS|
Thomas is another utility guy that did it all for Spring Hill high school last season, batting .427 with 43 RBI, 18 doubles and five home runs, while pitching 39-2/3 innings, compiling a 4-1 record, with 1.76 ERA and 63 strikeouts as a junior last year. As a sophomore, the slugger hit .402 with 17 runs, 25 RBI, eight doubles and two home runs. Thomas was brilliant on the mound as a sophomore, boasting a 4-0 record, with a 0.47 ERA, and 31 strikeouts in 30 innings of work. Thomas is ranked as the No. 17 prospect in Tennessee and ranked No. 10 as a right-handed pitcher in Tennessee. He was named to the 2016 PG Evoshield Classic All-Tournament Team, while also being named to the 2016 TBCA All-State First Team. The right hander is familiar with Middle Tennessee as he led Spring Hill High School to a Class AA State Championship Win on Reese Smith Jr. Field this past spring.

McGuire on Thomas: “He’s a true two-way guy. Tremendous upside on the mound, good velocity. He really attacks hitters as a pitcher. Outstanding power at the plate, and he’s coming off a championship team. He brings a great amount of versatility to the team.”
Jake Hagenow|C|6’1″ 180 Ibs.|Knoxville, Tenn. /Farragut HS|
Hagenow was outstanding from the plate and from behind the plate last year for Farragut. As a junior he hit .378, with 14 doubles, five home runs, .455 on-base percentage, and a .608 slugging percentage. The Knoxville native, was named the District 4-AAA Rookie of the Year in 2015, along with being named the Farragut Defensive Player of the Year and named to the All-District Team in 2016. Hagenow was selected to Prep Baseball Report Team Tennessee. He is ranked as the No. 3 catcher in Tennessee and was named to the 2016 WWBA All-Tournament Team.

McGuire on Hagenow: “He’s a very good defensive catcher, which is something that we needed to bring in, to mix in with what we have. He has swung the bat better, and better over the years. We look for him to help us from behind the plate right away.”
Peyton Wigginton|LHP/1B|6’3″ 180 Ibs.|L/L|Franklin, Tenn. /Page HS|
Wigginton was stellar on the mound last season for Fred J. Page High School, with a 1.26 ERA and 1.02 WHIP in 49 innings pitched. The southpaw amassed 67 strikeouts last season. His performance through high school, earned him All-District honors all three years, while being named All-State last season as a junior. Wigginton played in the 2016 Sun Belt Games with the championship winning team, Team Tennessee. He was also selected to the Prep Baseball Report Team Tennessee. The lefty is ranked as the No. 25 pitcher in Tennessee and was named to the 2016 TBCA All-State First Team.

McGuire on Wigginton: “Tall, lean, left-handed pitcher, with good command. He just keeps getting better and better. He can also swing the bat and play first base. He should be an impact guy on the mound as a freshman.”
Ryan Scharf|RHP|6’4″ 225 Ibs.|R/R|Decatur, Ill. /Kaskaskia College|
Scharf was dominant on the mound this past season for Kaskaskia College, finishing with a 5-2 record, in 10 starts. The Decatur, Ill., native threw 66 innings of work, while fanning 64 batters a season ago. His performance earned him 2016 Kaskaskia College Freshman of the Year honors. In high school, Scharf amassed 105-2/3 innings of work combined in his last two years at Mt. Zion, while striking out an unheard of 141 batters, to go along with his impressive 14-3 record. His family is filled with athletes as both mom (Sandy) and dad (Greg) were letterwinners in various sports at near-by Trevecca Nazarene University. His grandpa also played basketball for the Blue Raiders from 1960-61.

McGuire on Scharf: “Another junior college right-handed pitcher with very good stuff. He’s a three pitch guy that could be a weekend rotation guy if he comes in and does, what we think he can do.”
Alex DuBord|RHP|6’5″ 210 Ibs.|R/R|Fargo, N.D. /Neosho County CC|
DuBord made 10 appearances in 2016 for Neosho County, hurling 23-1/3 innings, with a 3-0 record and 23 strikeouts. This upcoming season he is the projected number one starter on the Neosho pitching staff. DuBord played high school ball at Fargo South, and currently holds the Eastern Dakota Conference strikeout record, as he was named to the All-State Team as a senior. The right hander lettered in Hockey, Football, and Baseball all four years while attending Fargo South and had scholarship offers in all three sports his senior year.

McGuire on DuBord: “Big right-handed pitcher with tremendous upside. He comes from a great junior college program and I think he’ll have an opportunity to mix in with our rotation right away.”

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