2023 Rays Division I Alumni College Preview

We are just days aways from the college baseball season getting underway so we wanted to take some time to preview the Rays alums getting ready to hit the diamond. First preview will take a look at the former Rays at the Division I level, with Division II, III, NAIA and JUCO previews being released in the coming weeks.

Last season was a banner year for Rays alums at the college level, with two former players garnering their respective conference Player of the Year honors. Max Wagner was named the ACC Player of the Year, while Alan Roden earned the Big East Player of the Year award. Eight former Rays made it to the Division I NCAA Tournament with their teams and a handful earned All-Conference honors.

MINNESOTA – The 2023 edition of the Minnesota Golden Gophers will feature six former Rays on the roster, with many of them slated to play a large role this season. RHP GEORGE KLASSEN was recently rated the No. 56 prospect in the 2023 MLB Draft and the No. 3 draft prospect in the Big Ten. The junior righty features a fastball in the low 100 mph range and will fit into the weekend rotation. Another rotation candidate is RHP WILL SEMB. Semb was also on the Big Ten Draft prospect list, checking in at No. 25. Madison College transfer OF BRADY JURGELLA is coming off a pair of All-American seasons in Madison, helping lead the Wolfpack to a runner-up finish in the NJCAA World Series. RHPs RANDON DAUMAN and freshman CADEN CAPOMACCIO will look to earn innings on the mound while junior INF JOE HAUSER is back from an injury that sidelined him for the back-half of the 2022 season.

TEXAS TECH – Sophomore OF OWEN WASHBURN is fresh off a breakout freshman season for the Red Raiders where he hit .277 with seven homers, 10 doubles and 48 RBIs. RHP JACK WASHBURN, Owen’s brother, joins the Red Raiders staff after transferring from Ole Miss where he helped the Rebels capture the 2022 NCAA College World Series championship.

MISSOURI STATE – Senior OF CAM CRATIC returns to the Bears’ lineup after helping guide Missouri State to a MVC tournament title and a NCAA Tournament bid a year ago. Cratic hit .285 with eight homers, while driving in 33 runs last season.

NEBRASKA – Sophomore C JOSH CARON enjoyed a breakout Summer with the Madison Mallards of the Northwoods League. Caron finished the Summer with 10 homers, 10 doubles, two triples to go along with 51 RBIs. The right-handed slugger is expected to play a key role in the Husker lineup in 2023.

XAVIER – Sophomore C MATT DePREY will expect to be a key piece to the Musketeer lineup behind the dish. DePrey hit .266 with three homers a season ago. Senior RHP ETHAN BOSACKER returns to the Xavier rotation after rehabbing from Tommy John surgery last season.

BRADLEY – A trio of former Rays look to lead the Braves to a Missouri Valley Conference title in 2023. 1B/DH CONNOR MANTHEY hit .246 with six long balls a season ago. INF CAL McGINNIS enjoyed a great freshman campaign where he hit .264 with two homers and four doubles. Freshman RHP THEO ZEIDLER will be in the mix for innings on the mound and was recently named an impact freshman by d1baseball.com.

LIPSCOMB – Junior C JAKE BERG, a transfer from Jacksonville, started 38 games, all behind the plate a season ago. Berg is slated to be in the lineup behind the dish for the Bison early in the season.

MILWAUKEE – Junior LHP RILEY FREY fashioned a 4.10 ERA a season ago, striking out 85 batters in 79 innings pitched. Frey looks to be the Friday starter for the Panthers. Frey was a second-team All-Horizon selection a season ago. RHP ELIOT TURNQUIST looks to be a key bullpen piece along with RHP KEAGON KAUFMANN. As a freshman, 1B JUSTIN HAUSSER batted .357 with a homer and 12 RBIs and will battle for a spot in the lineup early. Hausser landed on the Horizon League All-Freshman team last year. INF MARCUS CLINE and C THOMAS OTTO both return after a year off with injury.

NORTH DAKOTA STATE – Three former Rays will suit up for the Bison this season. C/DH STEPHEN LUND, a transfer from Gonzaga, looks to play a key role in the middle of the lineup joining the team as a graduate transfer. Freshman INF DAVIS HAMILTON will look to compete for a spot early in the infield. Transfer RHP HUNTER ROSENBAUM figures to be in the rotation mix after throwing 10.1 innings at Texas-Rio Grande Valley last season.

MIAMI (OH) – Junior RHP TYLER CHADWICK is slated to be a front-line starter for the Red Hawks. Chadwick was a 20th round selection in the 2022 MLB Draft while at Iowa Western. Freshman LHP LUKE ROSS is looking to earn a spot in the bullpen.

YOUNGSTOWN STATE – Junior C EDUARDO SAUCEDO will compete for a spot behind the plate for the Penguins. Saucedo is a transfer from Madison College where he helped the Wolfpack to a NJCAA World Series runner up finish a season ago.

NORTHERN ILLINOIS – A pair of former Rays will be in the Huskie lineup as we head into 2023. OF SPENCER BARTEL, a transfer from Madison College, will be a middle of the lineup piece, while LHP REAGAN KLAWITER will again be featured atop the Northern Illinois rotation. Kalwiter made 10 starts for the Huskies last year.

NORTHERN KENTUCKY – Junior C BRYCE MILLER transferred to Northern Kentucky after standout seasons with Jefferson CC. Miller batted .294 with three homers a season ago.

ILLINOIS-CHICAGO – Three former Rays will wear the Flames jersey in 2023. Transfer RHP VINCENT TRAPANI is rehabbing from Tommy John surgery this past Summer, while fellow Rays RHP REECE LAWLER and LHP VINCENT GOHLKE look to crack a strong UIC pitching staff early.

ST. THOMAS – Four former Rays will be in the lineup for the Tommies as the 2023 season gets rolling. Freshman INF DYLAN O’CONNELL was recently named the Summit League Preseason Freshman of the Year, while OF TANNER MARSH and C BRIGS RICHARTZ look to build upon strong seasons a year ago. Marsh played in 22 games last year, while Richartz hit .260 with three homers. Sophomore RHP BRYCE LEEDLE pitched in six games, sporting a 4.90 ERA last season.

UTAH VALLEY – Junior RHP MITCHELL MUELLER, a transfer from Parkland College has been up to 95 mph, and will compete for a spot on the mound right away.

GONZAGA – Freshman LHP MITCHELL MUELLER enjoyed a strong Fall and will be in contention for a role on the mound for the Zags, who won the West Coast Conference again last season.

WASHINGTON STATE – Senior C NATE STEVENS appeared in nine games a season ago for the Cougars and will look to make an impact behind the dish.

EVANSVILLE – Junior RHP RYAN SCHNEIDER is looking to find a spot on the Aces staff after returning from injury last season.

CREIGHTON – Freshman OF CUYLER ZUKOWSKI will look to earn innings early for the Blue Jays. Zukowski was named an impact freshman for Creighton.

VALPARAISO – Junior RHP JOSH COTTRILL will compete for a spot in the bullpen for the Beacons.

KENT STATE – Freshman INF KOLTON SCHALLER has the eye of the Golden Flash staff and will look to break the lineup early.

DALLAS BAPTISTOF JOEY NERAT will begin his freshman season with perennial power Dallas Baptist.