Mitchell native Patrick signs at MichiganMitchell High School graduate Kendall Patrick has signed to play baseball at the University of Michigan, he confirmed Tuesday.
By: Luke Hagen, The Daily Republic
Mitchell High School graduate Kendall Patrick has signed to play baseball at the University of Michigan, he confirmed Tuesday.
A 6-foot-2 catcher, Patrick has been playing junior college baseball at Black Hawk College at Moline, Ill. He will finish playing at Black Hawk this spring as a sophomore and join Michigan, an NCAA Division I university, in the fall with junior eligibility.
“To sign that paper takes all the weight off your shoulders,” Patrick said. “It’s been a goal of mine to play Division I since high school. I don’t know how to explain it. Basically, it’s a dream come true.”
Patrick, who graduated high school in 2010, signed with Michigan the weekend before Thanksgiving but told family and close friends the news during the holidays before telling The Daily Republic Tuesday.
Patrick said he received interest from other major teams, including South Dakota State, Nebraska-Omaha, Indiana, Butler, Virginia Tech and Indiana State.
During an intra-squad scrimmage in November, Patrick said Michigan’s baseball coaches came to watch him play. Eventually, they invited him for an official visit on campus, where he got to see Michigan play Iowa in a Big Ten Conference football game.
“Once I went up there, I basically committed on the spot,” he said. “Couldn’t beat it.”
During the recruiting process, the Michigan coaches told Patrick he has a strong chance to compete for a starting spot right away. He expects to be a middle-of-the-order hitter and the starting catcher.
“Basically, they want a guy to make an impact right away,” said Patrick, who will be on an 80 percent scholarship based on his academics. “From what they could tell from the two games they saw me play, they’re pretty confident in what I can do.”
As a freshman at Black Hawk in 2011, Patrick played in 34 games. He batted .424 in 92 plate appearances with 14 extra-base hits and 36 RBIs. He was named a third-team All-American by the National Junior College Athletic Association.
At the end of his freshman year, he broke his ankle sliding into third base to end his season one week before the playoffs.
Once he rehabbed and was ready to play, he tore his labrum — an injury to the shoulder joint — in his non-throwing arm in March 2012 in the second game of what would have been his sophomore season. Instead, he took a redshirt season, which does not count against eligibility, and is playing as a sophomore this spring.
Patrick acknowledged his injury past and said he was injury prone.
“To say the least, yeah,” he said. “They know what happened. They’re aware of that and they believe that I’m healed and the shoulder is strong enough to play to for them.”
Patrick also holds three individual records for the Mitchell spring high school baseball team. Since records were held starting in 2004, Patrick’s seven triples, 32 RBIs and eight hit by pitches are all leading in their respective categories.