ROUND ROCK, Texas – The Round Rock Hairy Men are excited to announce the team’s preliminary roster for the upcoming 2020 Texas Collegiate League season. Highlighted by a talented group of local student-athletes, the initial roster features 24 players. Additional student-athletes will be announced in the near future. Under TCL rules, each team is allowed 30 active players in road games and 35 active players in home games.
The inaugural 2020 Hairy Men squad is dominated by Texans, with 21 of the 24 players calling the Lone Star State home. Student-athletes on the preliminary roster represent a total of 15 different colleges and universities, including programs from NCAA Division I, II and III as well as the NJCAA. The squad features players from nine different NCAA Division I programs, including Baylor, Dallas Baptist, Houston, Texas State and UTSA. Other Central Texas universities represented include Southwestern and St. Edward’s.
All 21 native Texans on the initial roster attended high school in the state. A total of 15 different Texas high schools are represented, including Cedar Park, Cedar Ridge, Georgetown, Hendrickson, Round Rock, Rouse and Stony Point locally.
The preliminary Round Rock Hairy Men roster is below and can also be downloaded via RRHairyMen.com.
INF Kendall Achilles hit .200 with four RBI in 16 games, including four starts, at the University of The Incarnate Word in 2020 during his first collegiate season. He earned 13-6A All-District honors for three consecutive seasons at Cedar Ridge High School in Round Rock. Achilles earned Team MVP and Central Texas All-Star Game MVP awards during his senior year with the Raiders.
INF Luke Almendarez began his collegiate career at the University of Houston in 2020, hitting .240 with three RBI in eight games, including six starts. He made his collegiate debut at Dell Diamond in February during the inaugural Round Rock Classic. Almendarez attended Round Rock High School, earning a trip to the Austin Area High School Baseball Coaches Association All-Star Game and a selection to the Class 6A All-State Third Team in 2019. He helped the Dragons to a 13-6A District Championship and was named the Defensive Player of the Year prior to playing for the Texas Rangers Area Code squad a year ago.
RHP Jacob Ashkinos has pitched in 34 games, including nine starts, over three seasons with Baylor University during his collegiate career, combining to go 2-7 with a 5.11 ERA. The righty was named a 2019 Academic All-Big 12 Second Team selection and was added to the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll in 2017. Prior to his time at Baylor, Ashkinos spent a season at Cisco College, going 1-1 with a 3.46 ERA. The Aledo High School product was named a 2016 Perfect Game All-Texas Region Honorable Mention and was a 2015 State Semifinalist.
INF Esteban Cardoza made 16 starts during his first season with Baylor University in 2020. The Navarro College transfer was named an All-Conference First Team shortstop with the Bulldogs in 2018. During his time at Navarro, the squad claimed Conference Championships in 2018 and 2019 and placed third in the NJCAA World Series. Cardoza was a four-year letterwinner at Richardson High School in the Metroplex, earning Freshman of the Year honors in 2014, the team’s Defensive MVP award in 2016 and an All-Shortstop First Team selection in 2017.
LHP Wes Engle has appeared in 41 games, including 25 starts, in four seasons with Texas State University. He started three games in 2020 after redshirting in 2019. During his junior campaign in 2018, Engle appeared in 13 games, including 10 starts, the third-most on the team. The lefty graduated from Trinity High School in Euless, Texas, where he was selected as a 3-6A All-District Honorable Mention as a pitcher and the team’s Offensive MVP as a hitter. He was also a unanimous 3-6A All-District First Team selection and the team’s MVP during his junior year.
INF Kyle Froemke hit an even .300 in 20 games with Santa Barbara City College to begin the 2020 season. He racked up five home runs and drove in 17 RBI during his first action with the Vaqueros. He began his collegiate career at the University of Oregon, where he appeared in 35 games for the Ducks in 2019. Froemke attended Round Rock High School and was named the Newcomer of the Year in the Austin American-Statesman’s All-Central Texas team as well as a First Team selection for the 13-6A All-District squad. The infielder is set to continue his collegiate career at Oregon State University this fall.
RHP Reese Grimes made eight appearances for Paris Junior College in 2020, his first collegiate action. He was named to the Dean’s List for Academic Achievement after his first semester. The righty left his name in the record books at Georgetown High School, ranking second all-time in program history with eight saves in 2019. His 19 appearances during his senior campaign are also the fourth-most for any Eagles pitcher in program history.
OF Jake Hahn appeared in seven games for St. Edward’s University in 2020, his second season with the club after transferring from Brookhaven Junior College. He hit .242 with a pair of homers and 20 RBI during his sophomore campaign in 2019. Hahn was named to the Lone Star Conference Commissioner’s Honor Roll in the Fall of 2019. A standout at Lubbock’s Cooper High School, Hahn was named to the 3-5A All-District First Team in 2016 and 2017 as well as All-Region First Team in 2017.
RHP Zach Heaton logged four starts for the Dallas Baptist University Patriots in 2020 during his second season on the team. The righty made 11 appearances with the Patriots in 2019 after redshirting in 2018. Heaton was a three-year letterwinner at Second Baptist School in Houston, where he played for Head Coach Lance Berkman and Pitching Coach Andy Pettitte. He was a two-time All-State selection and earned Perfect Game All-American Honorable Mention honors in 2017. He also collected the District MVP award and was a two-time All-District First Team selection at Second Baptist.
INF Ryan Hernandez started all 15 games for the University of Houston in 2020 as the team’s everyday first baseman. He led the Cougars with a .300 batting average, 18 hits, 13 runs scored, four doubles, five home runs and 14 RBI. Hernandez transferred to the University of Houston after spending the 2019 season at San Jacinto College. During his time with the Gators, he was named to the All-Region XIV Second Team and helped the squad win the Region XIV Championship. He was a multi-sport athlete at Dexter Southfield High School in Massachusetts, competing in baseball, football and basketball. He was named a Rawlings All-American during his time at Dexter.
RHP Jacob Little returned to action for Texas State University in 2020 after not pitching in 2019, making four relief appearances for the Bobcats this season. Prior to joining the squad in San Marcos, Little pitched for two seasons at Temple College, making 41 total appearances with a 8-5 record. The righty attended Salado High School, where he was named a Class 4A All-State Honorable Mention by the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association as well as the 27-4A District Offensive MVP in 2015.
RHP Luke Malone appeared in three games with the University of Texas-San Antonio in 2020 after pitching in seven games with Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi in 2019. A product of Round Rock High School, Malone posted a 10-1 record with a 1.81 ERA and a 0.818 WHIP with 53 strikeouts and 12 walks in 69.2 total innings during his senior season with the Dragons. He was named a 13-6A All-District pitcher and helped lead his squad to the State Semifinals and a Regional Championship.
OF Jared McKenzie burst onto the collegiate scene during his freshman year at Baylor University earlier this year. The Round Rock High School graduate hit .406 (28-69) with three doubles and five RBI in 16 games with the Bears this season. McKenzie was a three-year letterwinner with the Dragons, earning a unanimous selection as the 13-6A District Co-MVP in 2019, as well as Class 6A All-Star nominations from the Austin Area Baseball Coaches Association, Texas Sports Writers Association and the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association. He hit .535 with 34 RBI during his senior season to earn a spot on the Texas Rangers Area Code team. While at Round Rock, the outfielder compiled a 28-game hitting streak, the second-longest all-time in Texas high school history.
OF Rey Mendoza appeared in nine games, including five starts, with the University of Houston in 2020, hitting .220 with a home run and five RBI to begin his freshman campaign. He was a multi-sport athlete, lettering in baseball and football at Eagle Pass High School, where he was a two-time 29-6A District MVP as a junior and senior. Mendoza was named to the Class 6A All-State First Team and was invited to the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association All-Star Game as a senior.
RHP Hambleton Oliver pitched in six games, including two starts, during his freshman season at Baylor University in 2020, going 1-0 with a 1.86 ERA (2 ER/9.2 IP). A four-year letterwinner at Calallen High School in Corpus Christi, Oliver was named the 29-5A District MVP in 2019 and was a two-time South Texas Pitcher of the Year award recipient. During his time at Calallen, the righty won three 29-5A District Championships and capped off his senior season by pitching to a 0.90 ERA with 104 strikeouts.
LHP Jared Pettitte pitched in five games with the University of Houston in 2020, striking out eight in 11.2 total innings. He went 1-1 across 10.2 innings in six appearances with the Cougars during his first collegiate action in 2019. In high school, Pettitte helped lead Second Baptist School to a State Championship in 2016 and was named a to the All-State First Team and was crowned the District’s MVP. He posted a 12-1 record with a 1.20 ERA and 130 strikeouts en route to a Rawlings-Perfect Game All-American Honorable Mention selection in 2016. The son of MLB All-Star pitcher Andy Pettitte, he is set to continue his college career this fall at Dallas Baptist University.
C Dylan Post appeared in seven games, including three starts, with the University of Houston in 2020 to begin his collegiate career. A four-year letterwinner at Lincoln-Way Central High School in New Lenox, Illinois, Post helped his team win Conference and Regional Championships as a junior. He also appeared in the Area Code Underclassmen Games during his time at LWCHS.
RHP Carter Poulson posted a 1-0 record with a 1.93 ERA in nine relief appearances with Wharton County Junior College in 2020, the first collegiate action of his career. A standout at Stony Point High School in Round Rock, Poulson currently holds the school’s single-season individual pitching records for wins with eight, strikeouts with 96 and complete games with seven. He also earned a spot in the Austin Area Baseball Coaches Association All-Star Game in 2019.
INF Ethan Ruiz suited up for Navarro College 21 times during his freshman season in 2020, combining to hit .258 with three home runs and 15 RBI. He was a key member of the Cedar Ridge High School squad that claimed a 13-6A District Championship in 2018. He earned Player of the Week honors from the Austin American-Statesman in April 2018 after hitting a game-tying home run that helped the Raiders earn the 13-6A District Championship.
RHP Austin Smith emerged as one of Southwestern University’s top pitchers in 2020, beginning the year 1-1 despite allowing just one unearned run in 8.0 total innings across three starts for the Pirates. The Cedar Park High School product tallied 14 strikeouts to only six walks on the year. Smith went 7-2 with a 3.18 ERA across 11 starts as a sophomore in 2019, collecting Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year honors in the process. He was also named to the All-SCAC First Team, American Baseball Coaches Association West All-Region Second Team and D3Baseball.com West All-Region Third Team.
RHP Hayden Thomas made five starts in 2020, going 2-1 with a 4.38 ERA for the Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi Islanders. He threw a complete game shutout on March 8 against University of The Incarnate Word, allowing just five hits and two walks while striking out six. During his freshman season in Corpus Christi, Thomas pitched in 16 games, including two starts. The righty was a two-sport athlete at Rouse High School in Leander, also competing on the Raiders’ football team.
OF River Town compiled a .508 batting average through 20 games with Louisiana State University-Eunice, helping guide the Bengals to a 21-0 record to start the 2020 season. He made 55 starts a year ago, finishing with a .339 batting average to go along with nine home runs and 47 RBI. Town was a member of the Zachary (Louisiana) High School squad that finished with a 35-4 record and reached a top 10 national ranking. The outfielder is set to continue his collegiate career at Dallas Baptist University this fall.
C Cody Vannoy hit .366 with a homer and seven RBI in 13 games, including 12 starts, for Tarleton State University in 2020. Before transferring to Tarleton to begin the 2020 season, Vannoy was a member of the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley’s Western Athletic Conference regular season championship team. He was also named to the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll each of his two semesters at UTRGV. Vannoy attended Rouse High School in Leander, where he lettered for two seasons after two years competing in TAPPS baseball as a homeschool athlete. The backstop was a three-sport athlete at Rouse and helped lead the team to a 17-5A District Championship during his senior season, earning 17-5A District MVP honors along the way.
RHP Colin Wyman pitched in seven games for Illinois State University in 2020, finishing 0-1 with a 3.60 ERA. Prior to joining the Redbirds program earlier this season, Wyman pitched at Navarro College, where he helped the Bulldogs to a third-place finish in the NJCAA World Series in 2019. The Pflugerville native attended Hendrickson High School, earning 13-6A District MVP honors during his senior season. He also garnered 13-6A All-District Third Team honors during his sophomore season and was named to the 13-6A All-District Second Team his junior year.
The Round Rock Hairy Men will be coached by Manager Chase Almendarez, Pitching Coach Tanner Driskill, Bench Coach Oscar Rodriguez and Student Assistant Jackson Ryan.
For more information about the Round Rock Hairy Men and the 2020 Texas Collegiate League season at Dell Diamond, visit RRHairyMen.com or call (512) 255-2255. Follow the Round Rock Hairy Men on Twitter to stay up to date with the latest news and information.