Prep Baseball Report

Wisconsin-Milwaukee Adds Three At Early Signing Period

By Steve Nielsen
Scouting Supervisor – Wisconsin/Illinois

The national early signing period came and went last month, a week where NCAA Division I and II programs can sign prospective student-athletes to National Letters of Intent. Members of the Horizon League, Wisconsin-Milwaukee is the only Division I program in the state and recently announced their 2016 early signing class.

The Panthers got commitments from two of the state’s top prospects in Matt DeYoung (Xavier, 2016) and Nick Winter (Milwaukee Lutheran, 2016) along with a Junior College transfer Devin Rybacki out of Illinois (Oakton Community College).

Winter, a left-handed pitcher from reigning WIAA Division 2 state champion Milwaukee Lutheran, is one of the more polished arms in the state’s 2016 class. A big competitor on the mound, Winter received several year-end accolades after going 8-3 with a 1.32 ERA in just over 88 innings for the Red Knights. Winter possess a mid-80’s fastball with excellent feel and command, along with similar command of his breaking ball and changeup. His ability to change speeds within the strike zone so effectively is what makes Winter such an intriguing prospect, and a top 15 player in the state.

Panther pitching coach Cory Bigler said, “Nick is a left-handed pitcher with a special feel for pitching, it is very difficult to find Wisconsin high school players that possess the baseball IQ and intangibles that Nick has displayed at his age. He is an extremely mature kid and he loves to compete.  I look forward to seeing Nick take another step at this level."

The other Wisconsonite joining Winter in the Panther program is the big left-handed bat of Matt DeYoung. DeYoung is a left-handed power bat that could profile at either a corner infield or outfield spot as well as having a big enough arm to see time on the mound. At -6-foot-4, 205-pounds its hard not to like DeYoung in a uniform, a strong kid with a strong arm DeYoung has a ton of potential going forward, ranking as one of the top 30 prospects in Wisconsin’s 2016 class.

Head Coach Scott Doffek said, “Matt will bring a physical presence to our lineup, power potential from the left side of the plate is hard to come by. We really like his makeup and his desire to win and he is the type of kid that we want in our program both on and off the field."

The Panthers will kick off their 2016 campaign with a four game set at Texas Tech on February 19, hoping to improve on a 39-20 record and a third place regular season finish in the Horizon League.

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