Fourteen Players Sign LOI’s To Play Baseball At UW

SEATTLE – Fourteen student-athletes signed letters of intent to play college baseball at Washington, coach Lindsay Meggs announced today.

The recruiting class fills needs at all positions and contains players from six different states.   Seven players listed as infielders, two outfielders, two catchers, two right-handed pitchers and a left-handed pitcher are all scheduled to join Washington in the fall of 2015.

Not only is the 2015 signing class large, it is talented and highly rated. Perfect Game ranks Washington’s class 34th nationally and the Huskies have landed the publications 36th-overall ranked player, pitcher Joe Demers.

“First of all I want to congratulate our associate head coach and recruiting coordinator Jason Kelly, as well as assistant coaches Donegal Fergus and Tanner Swanson for what I believe is an outstanding class,” said Meggs. 

“Each and every one of our 2015’s is first and foremost an outstanding student, and secondly talented enough to make an impression on our program the day they arrive.

The 2015 signing class is comprised of right-handed pitchers Demers and Karsen Lindell, left-handed pitcher Tyler Oldenberg, catchers David Irvine and Willie MacIver, infielders Blake Burton, AJ Graffanino, Jack Johnson, Karl Kani, Peyton Lacoste, Zach Needham and Dallas Tessar and a pair of outfielders from the state of Washington, Peter Perkins and Rex Stephan.

“While we went heavy on position players in the 2015 class, we believe the pitching in this group will more than hold their own before it’s all said and done.  And this has to be the most athletic group we have brought in to date, with the type of depth we need to continue to build our program.” 

Demers is the nation’s 11th-ranked right-handed pitcher overall, according to Perfect Game. He has represented the United States four times at USA National Team levels, earning gold medals with the U18 team in 2014 and 2013, plus 2011 as the youngest member of the U16 squad.

Also ranked in the Perfect Game’s national top-500 are Lindell (291), Graffanino (449) and Tessar (487). Burton, Kani, MacIver, Johnson and Irvine are all considered among the nation’s top 1,000 recruits according to the publication.

All 14 members of the class are exemplary students and expected to be able to continue Meggs’ team’s tradition of succeeding both in the classroom and on the field.

“Because we are the University of Washington, Husky Baseball will always be about graduating our players,” Meggs said. “However, it is just as much about the road to Omaha, and preparing them for professional baseball.  And with the recent success we’ve had in the area of facilities and player development, I think this class will have a chance to experience all three.”

Tune into, Twitter (@UW_Baseball), Instagram (UW_Baseball) and Facebook (UWHuskyBaseball) over the next week as we breakdown the entire class.

The 2015 Washington Baseball Class

Name                            Position              Hometown (School)
Blake Burton                  INF                       San Juan Capistrano, Calif. (Mater Dei)
Notes: Ranked No. 105 in California, 10th overall among third basemen; moves to Mater Dei after playing for Serra.

Joe Demers                    RHP                      Martinez, Calif. (College Park)
Notes: Represented USA National team four times; No. 36 overall prospect, No. 11 RHP, No. 6 overall in California.

AJ Graffanino                INF                       Peoria, Ariz. (Northwest Christian)
Notes: Son of former Major Leaguer Tony Graffanino; switch-hitter is No. 11 prospect from Arizona.

David Irvine                    C                           Roseburg, Ore. (Roseburg)
Notes: No. 5 prospect in Oregon; left-handed hitting catcher was honorable mention all-state.

Jack Johnson                  INF                       Seattle, Wash. (Roosevelt)
Notes: No. 14 overall player in Washington; hit .343 with 2 HR’s and 11 RBI in 22 games for Roosevelt.

Karl Kani                           INF                       Sherman Oaks, Calif. (Cathedral)
Notes: Speedster is ranked No. 79 overall in California; plays third base, but is an intriguing centerfield prospect.

Peyton Lacoste             INF                       Covington, La. (St. Paul’s)
Notes: Power-hitting prospect represented Louisiana in Power Showcase Home Run Derby.

Karsen Lindell                RHP                      West Linn, Ore. (West Linn)
Notes: No. 2 overall prospect from Oregon; 292nd overall nationally; 2nd highest rated player in UW class.

Willie MacIver               C                           Pleasant Hill, Calif. (College Park)
Notes: Battery mate with Joe Demers; hit .362 with 63 hits, 37 RBI last two seasons; No. 94 prospect in California.

Zach Needham             INF                       Puyallup, Wash. (Puyallup)
Notes: Left-handed hitter helped Puyallup to perfect season and 2014 4A State Championship.

Tyler Oldenberg           LHP                      Boise, Idaho (Bishop Kelly)
Notes: Played in 2014 Area Code Games for Royals with fellow signee Lindell; No. 6 prospect in Idaho.

Peter Perkins                 OF                        Bellevue, Wash. (Bear Creek)
Notes: No. 20 in Washington according to Perfect Game, No. 8 by Baseball Northwest; Emerald City League Co-MVP.

Rex Stephan                  OF                        Seattle, Wash. (O’Dea)
Notes: Left-handed hitter is state’s No. 19 prospect; hit .337 with a home run and 14 RBI for O’Dea.

Dallas Tessar                  INF                       Simi Valley, Calif. (Chaminade Prep)
Notes: Brother, Brando, pitched for Oregon; ranked No. 74 in California, 487th nationally.

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