Matt James picks his school, and other news

Matthew James, who’s currently ranked No. 9 in Illinois’ Class of 2013, has verbally committed to the University of Illinois. James, a 6-foot-2, 165-pound RHP/SS from Normal West HS, earned Prep Baseball Report second-team All-State honors as a sophomore last season after leading the Wildcats to the Class 4A sectional finals.

Last spring, James emerged as Normal West’s ace, as he posted a 9-1 record, which included six shutouts and one no-hitter. He finished with a 0.62 ERA, striking out 107 to 8 walks in 67.1 innings. James is also a left-handed hitting middle infielder who possesses arm strength and top-level hands.

James joins Harrisburg SS/RHP Ryne Roper, who’s currently ranked No. 1 in Illinois’ Class of 2013, as part of the University of Illinois’ 2013 recruiting class. James and Roper were teammates in the PBR Midwest Future Games last August. Illinois also recently received the state’s first 2014 commitment, Quintin Sefcik from Carmel HS.

In other recruiting news, Ben Kirchler, a MIF from Homewood-Flossmoor HS, has committed to Allegheny College in Meadville, PA. Kirchler has been a two-year standout for the Vikings.

John McLaughlin, a strong-bodied C from Crete-Monee HS, has committed to Kankakee CC. At January’s PBR Unsigned Senior Showcase, McLaughlin impressed with his arm strength.

Jordan Regez, an INF from Byron HS, has committed to Dominican University in River Forest, IL.

Send all Illinois recruiting information to [email protected]