Prep Baseball Report

Q&A with Central Arkansas Commit RHP Kaleb Schmidt (Kickapoo, 2016)

Shon Plack
Missouri Scouting Director

Kaleb Schmidt (Kickapoo, 2016) is coming off a very successful 2015 season.  After leading the Chiefs to an appearance in the Class 5 Final Four, Schmidt was named Ozark Conference Pitcher of the Year and was named 1st Team All-Ozark Conference. Shortly after the state championship, he earned 2nd-Team All State Honors.   

In 2015, Schmidt finished with a 1.51 ERA, collecting 64 strikeouts in 51 innings and surrendering 25 walks.

As Schmidt's summer progressed, he started visiting schools and chose to play at Central Arkansas after he graduates.   Now, Schmidt and his teammates are ready to make another run at the Class 5 state championship.

Recently, Schmidt gave us some insight on his recruiting process, last season's run at a state championship, and how is preparing for the 2016 season.   

PBR: What were your expectations about the recruiting process? Was it as expected? Easy/Difficult?

Schmidt: The recruiting process was fairly simple for me. It was frustrating at times, but all in all it was a pretty easy process.

PBR: Did location or distance from home play a factor in your decision?

Schmidt: No, location and distance weren’t much of a factor in my decision.

PBR: Where did Central Arkansas first see you? How did your relationship with them develop?

Schmidt: This past spring they watched me throw in Little Rock at the beginning of the season. In the summer they watched me throw in Fayetteville, Memphis, and Springfield at the Premier World Series. Coach Harlan called me after my start in Springfield, which was my last start of the Summer, and that is when I received my offer.

PBR: Who is the best player you have faced in your state, and why?

Schmidt: The best player I have faced from Missouri is Connor Brumfield from Rock Bridge. He was fast, athletic, and strong. He could hit any pitch you threw to him and it was a constant battle to get him out in the Quarterfinal game this past year.

PBR: Describe your experience at the PBR Future Games.

Schmidt: The PBR Future Games was a great experience for any baseball player who has interest in playing baseball at the next level. The event was attended every day by 150+ college coaches from all over. Every player that attended was very good and it made for a competitive atmosphere in all the games.

PBR: What advice would you give to young baseball players striving to get where you are?

Schmidt: No matter how big or small you are, hard work can’t be beat. Never think you are too good to do extra work. Don’t rush your decision making.

PBR: What do you do in the offseason to keep yourself in baseball shape and prepare for the upcoming season?

Schmidt: In the offseason I lift on my own for a few months before starting morning workouts at Kickapoo in October. In November, I will begin to throw at 2K Sports Training in Nixa. Also, beginning in November with Kickapoo we will begin to workout indoors with speed training as well as hitting and pitching.

PBR: What is the most memorable moment in your baseball career to this point?

Schmidt: My most memorable moment in baseball so far would definitely be the experience I had in this past postseason during Spring ball. Making the run to the Final Four is something I will never forget. Even though it did not end like we wanted it to, it was still a great experience that I will always remember.

PBR: What other schools were on your short list before you made your final decision?

Schmidt: Missouri State, Saint Louis University, Lubbock Christian, and Harding were all on my short list of schools at the end of the recruiting process.

PBR: When did the recruiting process really start to heat up for you? Was there a particular game or event that you feel turned the corner for you?

Schmidt: The recruiting process really heated up for me in the middle of the spring season. I had recently thrown well in Little Rock, Arkansas and had another quality start against Ozark in the beginning of the next week. These two appearances really led to a great spring and the heating up of my recruiting process.

PBR: Preview your high school for us. How do you feel your team will be? What are expectations and goals? Name some players that will play a key role for Kickapoo in 2016.

Schmidt: Coming off this past season, we, as a team, are just looking to continue having success on the field. I think our team will be very discipline and we will all have the same expectations come the beginning of Spring time. We return a lot of players with post season experience: seniors Riley Herron, Kyle Giefer, Tristan Stevens, Westin Gann, and Preston Keisker as well as juniors Chandler Jones, Adam Link, and Robbie Merced will all play a big role in having success this coming spring.

PBR: Where do you play in the summer? And what has been your most memorable experience with them?

Schmidt: I play for my high school team in the summer. We compete in some of the top tournaments in the Midwest over the summer such as the Senior Premier World Series. My most memorable experience with them is winning a big tournament in Memphis, Tennessee with only 13 players on our roster compared to the 20-man rosters of every other showcase team in the tournament.

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