13 Future Mountaineers Earn Preseason All-American Honors

Quinn Burkitt

With the announcement of the High School Preseason All-American and All-Regional baseball teams this season by Rawlings-Perfect Game, 13 future Mountaineers were recognized as a part of the teams.

Tyler Chadwick – RHP

The top West Virginia player, Tyler Chadwick, comes in on the third team senior preseason All-America list. The righty comes from Marshall High School in Marshall, Wisconsin where he was given a PG grade of 10 for his dominant high school career.

The three-year starter is ranked as the No. 2 right-handed pitcher and the No. 3 overall prospect from Wisconsin by Perfect Game and also appeared at the 2019 Perfect Game National Showcase.

Richard A. Benitez – SS

Benitez comes in as the top honorable mention for West Virginia on Perfect Game after being named an all-area honorable mention selection by the Miami Herald following a junior campaign which saw him slash .312 and steal 13 bags. Benitez comes from Westminster Christian High who is described by Randy Mazey as “a slick fielding shortstop who can really run.”

Ben Abernathy – SS

Abernathy is an infielder as well as making appearances as an outfielder and right-handed pitcher during his high school career. The Warrior, Alabama native hit .400 to go along with five homers throughout his high school playing days. He was ranked as the No. 4 shortstop and No. 23 overall player in Alabama by Perfect Game.

Braden Barry – OF

Barry comes from Trinity High in Louisville, Kentucky where the outfielder was named to the KHSAA All-Tournament team as well as being named an all-region selection. As a junior, he knocked seven home runs and was ranked as the No. 5 outfielder and No. 22 overall prospect in Kentucky.

William Bean – SS

Bean attended Langley High where he was a three-year varsity starter. The Great Falls, Virginia native is well known for his defensive glove work in the infield after winning his team’s Gold Glove Award as a sophomore as well as being named a 2019 Preseason Underclassmen All-American High honorable mention by Perfect Game.

Nate Blasick – 3B

The Halifax, Pennsylvania native is a primary third baseman but also served on his high school team as a right-handed pitcher at Halifax High. Blasick hit .493 with seven bombs as a two-time conference MVP and an all-area first-team player by Penn Live. He was also named a 2019 Preseason Underclassman All-American Second Team selection.

Justin Clark – RHP

Clark was a right-handed pitcher at Jesuit High in Tampa, Florida. The pitcher aided his high school in reaching a state championship while pitching to the tune of a 5-0 record and 2.95 ERA through 12 appearances. Clark pitched at the 2018 Junior National Showcase and is a two-time Preseason Underclassman All-American High Honorable mention by Perfect Game.

Ben Hampton – LHP

Hampton hails from De Pere, Wisconsin where he was a left-handed pitcher at West De Pere High. The lefty was named Bay Conference Pitcher of the Year and district player of the year as well as first-team all-state and West De Pere’s MVP. As a junior, Hampton struck out 112 batters and helped lead his team to a Wisconsin state tournament in 2019.

McGwire Holbrook – C

Holbrook played as a catcher at Bishop Moore High in Lake Mary, Florida. The catcher was named first-team all-district a pair of times and 2019 Utility District Player of the Year. He also led his team to the FHSAA 5A state semifinals in his junior year. Perfect Game ranked Holbrook as the No. 6 catcher and No. 53 overall prospect in his class.

Ethan Jones – LHP

Jones is from Wesley Chapel, Florida and played as a left-handed pitcher at Wesley Chapel High under coach Gary Moye. The pitcher was a part of the 2019 Perfect Game Super 25 national championship team and was also named to the WWBA World Championship All-Tournament team. As a junior, he led his team to a regional tournament and is a top 200 prospect from Florida by Perfect Game.

Michael Kluska – SS

The infielder currently plays shortstop at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. Kluska recently hit an astounding .431 with 25 hits and 14 RBI’s in 2019 and is the No. 1 ranked shortstop and No. 2 overall prospect by West Virginia.

Carlson Reed – RHP

Reed is from Marietta, Georgia where he pitches at Marietta High School. He was named a 2020 preseason all-state selection and was also named as the Cy Young Award and Scholar-Athlete Award recipient. As a junior, Reed delivered with a 2.58 ERA and currently ranks as the No. 55 overall prospect in Georgia.

Trevor Sharp – LHP

Sharp is one of the only in-state recruits in this class as he comes from Inwood, West Virginia where he pitched at Musselman High School. The four-year letterman was named a first-team All-EPAC selection while finishing his sophomore campaign with a 2.19 ERA. Perfect Game named Sharp as a 2019 Preseason Underclassman All-American High Honorable mention and was also named the No. 1 left-handed pitcher and No. 3 overall prospect in West Virginia.

Randy Mazey and his Mountaineers are in store for another solid class this upcoming year after all 13 players were either named to the third team senior All-America list or the honorable mention list. All of these players should look forward to serving large roles on the West Virginia baseball team in the coming years.