Baseball signs six recruits

Samuel Gordon

Head baseball coach John Anderson announced the signing of six recruits Monday.

Pitchers Alec Crawford and Dalton Sawyer, infielders Matt Stemper and Connor Schaefbauer, outfilder Dan Motl and catcher Troy Taxler have all signed National Letters of Intent and will join the Gophers baseball program in the fall of 2012.

“When we start to determine who we are going to recruit and offer scholarships to, we try to look for kids that are good fits for our program,” Anderson said in a release.

“All the young men in the class are gifted and have a strong physical ability. Looking at the overall class, all have been all-around athletes throughout their careers, and overall athleticism is something we really look for in recruiting.”

Crawford, a right-handed pitcher from Wilton, Iowa, is the ace of the Des Moines Area Community College pitching staff. He had a team leading 1.77 ERA in 15 appearances (12 starts) last season and posted a 10-2 record.

Sawyer, a native of Waconia, Minn., is a three time letterman at Waconia High School. He was an all-conference honorable mention as a junior, when he went 4-3 with 45 strikeouts.

Stemper hails from Burnsville, Minn. He was a first-team all-state selection as a member of the 2011 state-champion Burnsville High School team. He hit .500 with 36 RBI and three home runs. He was an all-state selection after his sophomore year, too.

Schaefbauer is from Sioux Falls, S.D. He plays for the Sioux Falls East Legion Team where he hit .464 with 22 doubles, six triples, 30 stolen bases and a .522 on-base percentage last summer. Sioux Falls East won the state championship in 2011.

Motl, also from Burnsville, Minn., joined his teammate Stemper on the all-state team in 2011. He hit .456 last season and stole 25 bases. The centerfielder also quarterbacked Burnsville’s football team this past season.

Traxler, out of La Crescent, Minn., was the Winona Daily News player of the year in 2011. He hit .457 during his junior year and scored 29 runs. He’s an excellent base-stealer, as he holds his school’s record for stolen bases in a career. He was an all-state selection last season.

“This year’s class is a very good class,” Anderson said in the release. “They all wanted to come here, got recruited by other schools, but made their decisions fairly quickly and decided they wanted to come here and this is where they wanted to be.”