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June 12, 2008
URI's Zach Zaneski signs with Texas Rangers
SOUTH KINGSTOWN -- Rhode Island catcher Zach Zaneski has signed with Major League Baseball’s Texas Rangers as a free agent and will report to the Rangers’ Single-A affiliate Spokane Indians on Friday, June 13.
“I am very excited about this opportunity,” said Zaneski. “I had a great four years at Rhode Island and wouldn’t be in this position right now without the support of my coaches and teammates. They have really helped prepare me for what lies ahead and I am looking forward to it.”
Zaneski, a two-time All-Atlantic 10 selection and recipient this year’s Rick Ligi Team MVP Award, finished the 2008 season with a team-best .355 batting average. He also led the squad with 77 hits, 49 runs, 46 RBI, 17 doubles, a .449 on-base percentage and 108 total bases. His 2008 hits, doubles and RBI totals rank as URI’s second-best single-season mark in each respective category.
Defensively, he led all A-10 catchers, having thrown out 27 potential base stealers. He ranks third all-time at URI with 1,027 career putouts and was one of 48 Division I student-athletes in the running for the 2008 Johnny Bench Award – which is presented annually to the nation's top catcher.
“I am really proud of Zach,” said head coach Jim Foster. “He had a great career here and certainly deserves this opportunity. He has been everything a coach could ask for – both on and off the field – and I couldn’t be happier for him.”
Zaneski is the sixth Rhode Island baseball player to sign with an MLB team since 2003. Most recently, Steve Holmes was selected by the New York Mets in the fifth round (154th overall) of the 2006 Draft, marking Rhode Island’s highest-ever draft pick. In 2005, Zack Zuercher was selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the ninth round (290th overall), while Dan Batz went to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the sixth round of the 2004 Draft (178th overall). In 2003, right-handed pitchers Reid Willett (21st Round - 613th pick, Chicago Cubs) and Jared Trout (28th Round - 842nd pick, Oakland Athletics) both were selected after their junior seasons and opted to sign professional contracts.
Posted by Corey Bourassa at 5:40 PM to Pro Baseball
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