After signing 18 players in his first recruiting class, Baylor baseball head coach Steve Rodriguez brought in nine players for his second class to make an impact in the 2018 season.
“As a staff we are very excited about this well-rounded and talented signing class,” said Rodriguez. “We were able to address some depth needs with quality left- and right-handed arms. We also added some talented and skilled athletes in the infield, outfield and behind the plate. Last year’s big class helped us get a solid foundation to the future of Baylor baseball and this year’s class just adds to that. Our coaching staff has been aggressive on the recruiting landscape and we’re excited about the direction of this program.”
The class features six players from Texas, one from California, one from Illinois and one from Kentucky. Position-wise, four are pitchers (three left-handed, one right-handed), two are catchers, two are infielders, one is an outfielder and one is a first baseman (also LHP). Bios for each signee are below.
DAVION DOWNEY | OF | L-L | 6-0, 200 | FR | WARREN EAST H.S. | BOWLING GREEN, KY
High School: Four-year letterwinner at Warren East High School for Coach Wes Sanford … Named all-district in 2014-2016 … Named all-region in 2015-2016 … Named all-state in 2015-2016 … Selected for East/West all-star team in 2015-2016 … Broke school record for career doubles with 41 … Career .408 hitter with 60 stolen bases.
Personal: Born Dec. 6, 1998 … Son of William Downey and Tammy Watt … Plans to major in kinesiology.
KYLE HARPER | C | R-R | 6-0, 190 | FR | CYPRESS CREEK H.S. | HOUSTON, TX
High School: Four-year letterwinner for Coach Rusty Sample at Cypress Creek High School … Led team to two bi-district championships and area finals … Named to academic all-district team in 2014-16 … Named second-team all-district catcher in 2016 … Houston Area Baseball Coaches Association all-star in 2016 … Named Perfect Game 2016 Underclassman Honorable Mention.
Personal: Born on July 30, 1998 … Son of Kevin and Andrea Harper … Plans to major in business.
NICK LOFTIN | INF | R-R | 6-1, 165 | FR | W. B. RAY H.S. | CORPUS CHRISTI, TX
High School: Four-year letterman for Coach Orlando Ruiz at W.B. Ray High School … Helped team to district championship as junior … Over high school career had .454 batting average, 88 hits and 29 stolen bases … Named to MaxPreps Underclass All-American Team as an outfielder … Named to all-district academic team twice … Named all-district first team shortstop twice … USA Today All-USA Texas second team shortstop in 2016 … THSBCA all-state first team shortstop in 2016 … 2016 Perfect Game Underclassman Honorable Mention.
Personal: Born on Sept. 25, 1998 … Son of Jeffrey and Kathy Loftin … Intends to major in environmental science.
MADDUX MILLER | RHP | R-R | 6-4, 185 | FR | MARTIN H.S. | ARLINGTON, TX
High School: One-year letterwinner at Martin High School for Coach Curt Culbertson … Named all-district in 2016 after going 3-0 with 2.00 ERA … Received 2016 Perfect Game Underclassman Honorable Mention.
Personal: Born Nov. 13, 1998 … Son of Roy and Megan Miller … Father was a pro baseball player.
BILLY MOTE | INF | L-R | 6-1, 195 | FR | UNIVERSITY H.S. | BLOOMINGTON, IL
High School: Two-year letterwinner for Coach Steve Paxson at University High School … Led team to win Cornbelt Conference Championship in 2016 … As junior batted .368 with nine doubles, two triples and 36 runs scored … As sophomore batted .397 with nine doubles, one triple and 33 runs scored.
Personal: Born on Sept. 9, 1998 … Son of Gregory and Bridget Mote.
WESTON SMITH | LHP | R-L | 6-3, 180 | FR | SANDRA DAY O’CONNOR H.S. | HELOTES, TX
High School: Three-year letterwinner and district champion for Coach Dave Collenback at Sandra Day O’Connor High School … Named MaxPreps player of the week on Oct. 7, 2015 with 16 strikeouts in one game … As sophomore had three wins to go along with 2.88 ERA and 43 strikeouts … Started at QB as sophomore for OHS football team.
Personal: Born on Jan. 2, 1999 … Son of Gregory and Valerie Ann Smith … Plans on majoring in health sciences.
TYLER THOMAS | LHP | L-L | 6-1, 170 | FR | KELLER H.S. | KELLER, TX
High School: One-year letterwinner at Keller High School for Coach Rob Stramp … Spent year on varsity as pitcher but also played first base and outfield ... Named to Perfect Game’s all-tournament team three times … 2016 Perfect Game Honorable Mention … 2016 Rawlings/Perfect Game Underclassman All-American.
Personal: Born on Nov. 27, 1998 … Son of Chad and Candice Thomas.
CHASE WEHSENER | 1B/LHP | R-L | 6-1, 185 | FR | CHRISTIAN H.S. | LA MESA, CA
High School: Three-year letterwinner at Christian High School for Coach Mike Mitchell … Helped team win Central League twice … Helped team to 29-2 record and CIF Div III championship in 2015 … Named to San Diego 2016 all-academic team … 2016 All-East County Prep Baseball first team … 2016 San Diego Hall of Champions all-central team … East County Sports student athlete of the week in 2016 … Hit .400 with 54 RBI in career … Pitched in 13 games and posted 0.91 ERA with six complete games.
Personal: Born May 1, 1999 … Son of Chuck and Kristi Wehsener.
JACOB WYETH | C | S-R | 6-3, 215 | FR | LAKE TRAVIS H.S. | AUSTIN, TX
High School: Three-year letterwinner for Coach Rogers at Lake Travis High School … Two-time area champion and one-time regional quarterfinal champion … Hit .384 with six doubles and 28 RBI as junior … 2015 Perfect Game All-American Underclassman Team … Named 2016 first-team all-district catcher … Named 2016 all-central Texas catcher.
Personal: Born on July 27, 1998 … Son of Pete and Cindy Wyeth … Intends on majoring in engineering.