Feb. 12, 2009
DURHAM, N.C. — Baseball America named three Baylor student-athletes preseason All-Big 12 Conference, the publication announced Thursday. Third baseman Shaver Hansen, outfielder/left-handed pitcher Aaron Miller and right-handed pitcher Kendal Volz, all juniors, were so honored. Volz was selected as the league’s preseason pitcher of the year.
Hansen, a product of Fruita Monument High School in Grand Junction, Colo., led the Bears in several offensive categories last season, including batting average (.326), hits (72), triples (6), runs (48) and RBI (47). He also had 16 doubles, six home runs and eight stolen bases. Hansen, an honorable mention All-Big 12 pick by the league’s coaches last season, was fourth in the league and 29th nationally in triples last year.
Miller, who prepped at Channelview [Texas] High School, hit .295 with 12 home runs and 45 RBI in 2008. He led the Bears in home runs, extra-base hits (31), slugging percentage (.562), walks (34) and on base percentage (.425), and he and Hansen shared the team lead with 118 total bases each. Miller tied for ninth in the Big 12 in home runs last season, fourth among players who return in 2009.
Volz was 3-6 with a 4.20 ERA in 12 games, all starts, last season. The Smithson Valley [Texas] High School product led the Big 12 and ranked 18th nationally in 2008 with 10.83 strikeouts per nine innings, a Baylor single-season record. Volz finished the season with a staff-best 85 strikeouts against 28 walks over 70.2 innings. His 3.04 strikeout-to-walk ratio was the ninth-best season average in Baylor history.
Baseball America also picked Baylor to finish third in the Big 12 Conference, behind Texas A&M and Texas. Missouri was picked to finish fourth, followed by Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Nebraska, Texas Tech, Kansas and Kansas State.
Volz and Miller were two of four Bears listed on Baseball America’s top-10 prospects list for the 2009 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft from the Big 12. Volz was second, while Miller was 10th. Right-handers Shawn Tolleson and Craig Fritsch, both draft-eligible sophomores, ranked fifth and eighth, respectively.
Baylor opens its 2009 season Feb. 20-22, hosting Pacific for a three-game series at Baylor Ballpark.
For more Baylor baseball information, check out Straight from the Pen.