Feb. 18, 2008
WACO, Texas -- Baylor sophomore second baseman Raynor Campbell and junior shortstop Beamer Weems were named preseason All-Big 12 Conference by Baseball America, the publication announced Monday. Baseball America, which has Baylor ranked 15th in its preseason poll, picked the Bears to finish second in the Big 12 this season. The publication also listed sophomore right-handed pitcher Kendal Volz as the league's third-best prospect for the 2009 Major League Baseball Draft.
Campbell, a 2007 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American, moves to second base this season after serving as the Bears' primary starter at third base last year. A product of Katy-Taylor [Texas] High School, Campbell hit .321 with five home runs, 29 RBI, 38 runs, 13 doubles and six stolen bases. His batting average was best on the team among players with at least 2.5 at bats per game, becoming the first Baylor freshman to accomplish that feat since Marty Crawford in 1993.
A two-time All-Big 12 Conference honoree and a unanimous first-team all-league pick last season, Weems hit .321 and shared the team lead with nine home runs in 2007; he also led Baylor with 17 doubles, 59 RBI, 125 total bases and 35 walks last season. He was even stronger in Big 12 play, hitting .361 with five home runs, 27 RBI, seven doubles, three triples, a .649 slugging percentage and a .438 on base percentage in 24 games.
Known for his defensive prowess, Weems has committed only 22 errors in 110 career starts at shortstop with only six fielding errors (others were throwing errors). Weems was a 2006 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American.
Volz moved into Baylor's weekend rotation the week prior to the start of conference play in 2007 and never left. He finished the season 6-2 with a 5.16 ERA and 65 strikeouts over 68.0 innings. An honorable mention All-Big 12 pick, Volz became just the ninth Baylor freshman ever to record at least six victories. He earned all-tournament honors at the Big 12 Conference Championship after a record 13 strikeouts against Oklahoma.
No. 15 Baylor opens its 2008 season this weekend, hosting Purdue for a three-game series at Baylor Ballpark. The Bears and the Boilermakers meet Friday at 6:30 p.m. CST, Saturday at 3 p.m. and Sunday at noon.