PASADENA, Calif. (Aug. 25, 2016) – The Caltech baseball team welcomes a crew of six incoming freshmen going into the 2016-17 season.
The class includes:
David Adams (Atlanta, Ga. / Holy Innocents' Episcopal School)
Alex Corado (San Diego, Calif. / Scripps Ranch)
Minjae Kim (West Vancouver, B.C. / West Vancouver Secondary School)
Grant Messner (Lake Forest, Ill. / Lake Forest)
Cortland Perry (New York, N.Y. / Dalton School)
Alexander Wuschner (Farmington, Conn. / Farmington)
"This class as a whole is really exciting," Head Coach Matt Mark said. "We only graduated one everyday player last year, so this was not a class to fill immediate needs, but rather one to help accompany a growing team. We have picked up depth both in the outfield and on the mound - two areas where we either needed the help or graduated players. I am really excited to count on this class early."
Atlanta, Ga. / Holy Innocents' Episcopal School
6-1 / Outfield
A three-year varsity player, Adams played travel ball for the Southern Prospects and Dunwoody Diablos. He was a 2015 Matt Molen Memorial Award recipient, played in the 2015 State Playoffs and helped his team make its way to the 2016 Final Four. Along with his success on the field, Adams was a National Merit Finalist, AP Scholar with Distinction, STAR Student, Georgia Certificate of Merit recipient and Eagle Scout.
"David is a huge piece to this incoming class," Mark said. "He brings us power and speed in the corner outfield spots as well as DH. He has been a big part of his team's top-4 finish in Georgia."
San Diego, Calif. / Scripps Ranch H.S.
6-1 / Outfielder / Lefthanded Pitcher / First Baseman
Corado is another new addition who can be a major contributor to the team. He was recognized as Student of the Month in March 2016 and an AP Scholar with Honor.
"Alex is going to be able to help us out both on the mound and in the field," Mark said. "He gives us more lefthanded pitching and hitting depth as well as working his way into our young outfield."
West Vancouver, B.C. / West Vancouver Secondary School
5-11 / Leftfielder / Pitcher
Kim played for the North Shore Twins in the B.C. Premier Baseball League since 2010, leading the team to the 2013 regular season and playoff titles, 2014 regular season title and playoff championship game and B.C. Summer Games title. Kim was also a member of his school's varsity basketball team his freshman and sophomore years, helping it to win a District Championship. In addition to his athletics, Kim was the Top All-Around student for two consecutive years, earned his IB diploma and a Student Government scholarship and was selected for the Shad Valley STEM summer camp. Kim demonstrated his leadership skills in such positions as Student Council president and a Student Ambassador for Canada during the Kizuna Project, which is a Japanese government-organized exchange program for the international understanding of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake recovery.
"Minjae comes to us from one of the best baseball programs in Canada," Mark said. "He has played in some of the best tournaments and leagues and will provide us with depth at the corners as well as on the mound. I am excited to see what he can do."
Lake Forest, Ill. / Lake Forest H.S.
6-0 / Righthanded Pitcher
Messner was selected to participate in the 2015 Under Armour Pre-Season All-America Tournament, as well as the 2015 Under Armour National East Showcase and 2015 Arizona Senior Fall Classic. He was named Academic All-Conference for both football and baseball his junior and senior years. Messner was also a Cum Laude Society member, Delegate to the 2015 Illinois Boys State, Delegate to the 2015 Congress of Future Science and Technology Leaders and a 2016 Illinois State Scholar.
"I have had the pleasure of recruiting Grant now for two full summers and he has only gotten better each time I saw him," Mark commented. "He gives us a big arm to help out our bullpen."
New York, N.Y. / The Dalton School
6-0 / Righthanded Pitcher / Infielder
In addition to playing for the Bayside Yankees as his summer team, Perry played at a high level for The Dalton School, where he was a First Team All-Ivy Prep League Baseball selection his sophomore, junior and senior years. He also received an Honorable mention for the MSG Varsity All-City Team his junior year and Honorable Mention for the All-Ivy Prep League Basketball his senior year. As a junior, Perry qualified for the American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME). He finished in fourth place at the Penn Classic coding competition and came in third place in the American Computer Science League.
"Cortland is a two-way player who has the ability to make an impact early at multiple spots," Mark said. "He has been one of the top hitters and pitchers in New York the last two years."
Farmington, Conn. / Farmington H.S.
6-0 / Outfielder / Second Baseman
Rounding out the recruiting class is Wuschner, who was a member of the team that placed second out of 63 teams in the 2016 Harvard Pre-Collegiate Economics Competition.
This band of freshmen will join a team that demonstrated significant improvement last season; the Caltech baseball offense scored an outstanding 19 runs in last year's Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges series, which was the most runs in a SCIAC series since the 15 put up against the University of Redlands on Apr. 23-24, 1999. On an individual level, rising sophomore Mark Burleson (Ladera Ranch, Calif. / Tesoro) tied the 27-year old Caltech baseball single-season program record for doubles at the conclusion of last year's season, while rising junior Garrett Levine (Columbus, Ohio / Columbus Acad.) became the third Beaver since 2008 to hit two home runs in one season and was joined by rising senior as Tim Menninger (Norristown, Pa. / Chestnut Hill Acad.) two of only three active Beavers, along with rising junior David Watson (Windsor, Colo. / Windsor), to have hit a homer in their career.