Beavers Sign Three In Baseball
Nov. 30, 2000
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Oregon State signed three baseball players to letters of intent during this fall's early signing period. All three are high school seniors who will join OSU in the fall of 2001: righthanded pitcher Andy Baldwin (Hood River, Ore./Hood River Valley HS), catcher Cody Gunn (Brewster, Wash./Brewster HS) and outfielder Kris Walker (Amboy, Wash./Battle Ground HS).
'We wanted to sign some players capable of coming in next year and helping us in places where we could have openings,' OSU head coach Pat Casey said. 'We were able to do that, and able to do it with some high school players who will have three or four years to contribute to our program. It's a good group, and these are three guys our staff is really looking forward to working with. Plus, all three of them have demonstrated a big interest in succeeding academically as well as athletically.'
Baldwin is still maturing into his 6-foot-5 frame. He impressed OSU's coaches with his performances for Team Oregon and Team Northwest during the summer season, as a junior on a young Hood River Valley squad last spring, he was 3-4 with a 4.74 earned run average but averaged nearly a strikeout per inning.
'He really came on and pitched well during the summer,' Casey said of Baldwin. 'He'll be a freshman pitcher who we think can be very good, he's going to mature and get stronger. He has the potential to be a very good pitcher in the Pac-10.'
Baldwin was also being recruited by Minnesota before choosing OSU.
'I felt very comfortable down there,' Baldwin said of Oregon State. 'The coaches seemed very knowledgeable and caring. Plus, that's where I want to be because it's close, and good things are happening there right now - I want to be there.'
Gunn was an first-team all-league selection last spring, batting .545 with 10 homers, 35 runs batted in and eight doubles. He also demonstrated good speed with three triples and 14 stolen bases for Brewster.
'He's very capable of being a Pacific-10 player as a freshman,' Casey said of Gunn. 'He's solid both defensively and offensively, I think he could play for any team in the country. He's got a great work ethic. He's very athletic, but he does everything he can to get the most out of his ability.'
Gunn was also being recruited by San Diego State, Nevada-Las Vegas, Washington State and Gonzaga before selecting Oregon State.
'I took my visit there and just really enjoyed it,' Gunn said. 'I liked the town, I liked the atmosphere, the coaches and the direction the program is headed. I liked the players, and it just felt like the right place for me.'
Walker was the leadoff hitter for Battle Ground last spring, batting .310 with 15 RBIs, one homer, six triples, four doubles and 18 stolen bases. The lefthander also got some time on the mound, saving four games and striking out 22 en route to a 2.40 ERA.
'We've been trying to improve our team speed, and Kris will really help us in that area,' Casey said of Walker. 'He's a hard-nosed player. We needed to add team speed and find a guy who can play center field, he's capable of being a true leadoff guy and he covers a lot of ground.'
During summer ball for the Vancouver Storm senior Babe Ruth team, Walker batted .360 with 4 homers, 16 triples, 12 doubles and 22 stolen bases.
OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY BASEBALL SIGNINGS - FALL, 2000
Andy Baldwin, righthanded pitcher - Hood River, Ore. (Hood River Valley HS)
2000 high school statistics - 3-4 record, 4.74 ERA, 62 innings, 77 hits, 39 walks, 56 strikeouts
Cody Gunn, catcher - Brewster, Wash. (Brewster HS)
2000 high school statistics - .545 batting average, 10 home runs, 3 triples, 8 doubles, 35 runs batted in, 14 stolen bases
Kris Walker, outfielder - Amboy, Wash. (Battle Ground HS)
2000 high school statistics - .310 batting average, 1 home run, 6 triples, 4 doubles, 15 runs batted in, 18 stolen bases