2014 No. 53 Connor Kuiper Commits to Parkland

By Phil Wade

Director, PBR Indiana

Connor KuiperThe No. 53 ranked prospect in Indiana's 2014 class, Connor Kuiper, recently committed to Parkland. Kuiper is a 6-foot-3, 190 pound outfielder from Penn HS.  He has attended multiple PBR events throughout his HS career, most recently the Unsigned Senior Event Oct. 20th at Bishop Chatard HS in Indianapolis. 

Kuiper is an athletic player with a strong arm from the outfield at 88 mph.  His best tool is his bat.  At the plate he possesses high level bat speed and projectable power.  He posted an 89 mph exit velo at the Unsigned Senior event and runs a 7.10 60.

Below, Kuiper discusses his commitment to Parkland:

PBR: Why did you choose Parkland?

Kuiper: I chose Parkland because from the moment I got there I loved everything about it. Coach Webb and Coach Garcia are one of a kind and really made me feel like I was going to be a part of something big. I love the idea of it being close to the University of Illinois and I am in love with the weight room. I can already see myself putting in multiple hours in a place like that. I also chose the JUCO route because coming to a two year school, I'll really be able to just work on my skills and see the pitching that I've never been able to see since I have never played high school varsity baseball. I'll always have that chip on my shoulder and that only makes me want it more.

PBR: Where did Parkland first see you compete?

Kuiper: Coach Kennedy, although no longer there, first saw me in Ann Arbor for a tournament and then a few days later at the PBR Top Prospect Games. Even though he's no longer with the program, he was a huge part in the recruiting process for me and really helped me out along the way.

PBR: What other schools did you consider?

Kuiper: I also considered DACC and St. Josephs, but I knew right away that Parkland was the place for me.

PBR: What do the coaches expect of you when you first arrive on campus?

Kuiper: The coaches expect me to come in and be a big bat in the middle of the order while playing right field. I know I have what it takes and I'll just continue to grow in my hitting ability.

PBR: You have attended multiple PBR events throughout your HS career.  How has PBR helped you in the recruiting process?

Kuiper: PBR has helped me by just allowing me to be seen by colleges. It has also helped me not only finding a school, but making me better! Seeing the rankings and other players from the state and Midwest really gives you an idea of how many good ball players there are. It just makes you want to work harder.

PBR: Who has had the biggest impact on you as a baseball player?

Kuiper: My father and mother. As kids growing up in big families, they never got the opportunity to do the things that I am able to do today. They are both extremely hard working and I am thankful that they give me the opportunity to play so much baseball. I know one day I will pay them back for everything they have done for me.

PBR: You Played for the Indiana-Eastlake Chargers this summer, how did playing for them impact you as a baseball player?

Kuiper: This past summer I played for the Indiana-Eastlake Chargers and they did a great job getting me seen. They brought scouts out to nearly every game and called coaches for us. Everything about the organization is fantastic. This summer I will be playing for the Indiana Blue Jays. It should be a really good team and a great way for me to get ready to head to college.

PBR: What are your goals heading into the off-season?

Kuiper: My goals this off-season are to continue to get stronger and put on weight while also touching up my swing. Everyone knows how to swing it, just working on the fine details now to really maximize consistency at the plate.

PBR: What is your fondest memory as a baseball player to date?

Kuiper: My fondest memory as a baseball player is playing in the Babe Ruth World Series as a 13 year old in Salt Lake City. The competition was one of a kind as I played against kids from everywhere and seeing that some today are committed to top schools. It was a great experience breaking the hit record for one game and then having it tied the very next. The overall experience was unforgettable.

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