Dec. 22, 2009
BERKELEY, CALIF. - The University of California baseball program has signed seven in-state athletes to national letters of intent - featuring four pitchers (three of which are also position players), a catcher, a shortstop and an outfielder - it was announced by Cal head coach David Esquer.
The incoming class for fall 2010 includes Vince Bruno, a left-handed hitting junior college outfielder from Concord (Los Medanos Junior College); Derek Campbell, a shortstop from Irvine (Mater Dei High School) and Eric Jaffe, a right-handed pitcher/first baseman from Oakland's Bishop O'Dowd High School.
As a senior at Clayton Valley High School in 2009, Bruno batted .543 with 15 doubles, three triples, three home runs, 37 RBI and 17 stolen bases, earning second-team Collegiate Baseball High School All-America honors. He was selected Cal Hi Sports North Coast Section Player of the Year, Diablo Valley Athletic League MVP, ESPN/Cal Hi Sports first-team all-state and Contra Costa Times first-team All-East Bay, finishing with a .482 career batting average as a prep.
Campbell batted .340 with seven home runs and 21 RBI as a junior at Mater Dei High School in 2009, earning first-team All-Trinity League and second-team all-county honors. He was named Mater Dei's Offensive Player of the Year in 2009 after being tabbed as his squad's Defensive Player of the Year as a sophomore in 2008.
At the plate, Jaffe batted .471 with eight home runs and 25 RBI during his junior year at Bishop O'Dowd HS. On the mound, the right-hander went 3-0 with a 1.91 ERA, allowing only 11 hits in 33.0 innings with 47 strikeouts. Jaffe was selected a First-team Underclass All-American by Perfect Game USA, was rated the 95th top prospect in the country by Perfect Game Crosschecker and was first-team HAAL All-League as well.
Also signing national letters of intent with the Golden Bears were Andrew Knapp, a switch-hitting catcher from Granite Bay (Granite Bay High School); Louie Lechich, a left-handed pitcher/outfielder from Stockton (St. Mary's High School); Kyle Porter, a left-handed pitcher from El Dorado Hills (Oak Ridge High School) and Mike Theofanopoulos, a left-handed pitcher/outfielder from Pleasanton (Foothill High School).
At Granite Bay HS, Knapp batted .500 with 10 doubles, three triples, six home runs and 37 RBI, earning 2009 Maxpreps Junior Player of the Year honors. He was also named Sierra Foothill League MVP, Sacramento All-City and Sacramento Area All-Metro. Knapp is the son of Mike Knapp, a standout catcher for the Bears during 1985 and '86 seasons.
Left-hander Lechich hit .457 with eight home runs, 27 RBI and 14 stolen bases as a junior at St. Mary's HS, while also going 3-1 with a 2.48 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 48.0 innings on the mound. He was a 2009 TCAL MVP and a Cal Hi Sports second-team All-State selection as well.
Porter is a three-year varsity starter at Oak Ridge HS, where as a junior the left-hander went 7-2 with a 2.10 ERA, striking out 75 batters in 56.2 innings. He was named a 2009 Rawlings Preseason All-American and was a 2009 first-team all-league selection.
Left-hander Theofanopoulos was 4-2 with a 3.26 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 34.1 innings as a junior at Foothill HS, earning second-team all-league honors. He is also a two-year high school team captain and helped pitch the Danville Hoots to the Connie Mack World Series this past summer.
"This recruiting class definitely fills our needs at every position," said Esquer. "This group provides us with an infielder, a catcher and an outfielder, plus pitchers who are also good athletes and can help us as position players. Combining this class with the talented freshmen we have makes me real optimistic about the future of our program."
CALIFORNIA'S 2009 BASEBALL RECRUITING CLASS
Name Pos B/T Last School (Hometown) Vince Bruno OF L/R Los Medanos Junior College (Concord, Calif.) Derek Campbell SS R/R Mater Dei HS (Irvine, Calif.) Eric Jaffe RHP/1B R/R Bishop O'Dowd HS (Oakland, Calif.) Andrew Knapp C S/R Granite Bay HS (Granite Bay, Calif.) Louie Lechich LHP/OF L/L St. Mary's HS (Stockton, Calif.) Kyle Porter LHP L/L Oak Ridge HS (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) Mike Theofanopoulos LHP/OF L/L Foothill HS (Pleasanton, Calif.)