Thursday, August 22, 2013
KENNESAW, Ga. – Kennesaw State baseball junior catcher Max Pentecost has been named the Perfect Game College Summer Player of the Year, it was announced on Wednesday by Kendall Rogers of PerfectGame.org.
The Award comes after an MVP summer for Pentecost in the Cape Cod League playing for the Bourne Braves, accounting for a fifth of the team's total runs while batting .346 with 29 RBI, six home runs, a .538 slugging percentage and a .425 on-base percentage.
"I really thought I got more comfortable in my overall game while up there at the Cape," Pentecost said. "I've definitely shortened up my swing a lot. The beginning of last season (the spring), I was getting long with my swing and was fouling off a lot of fastballs and such. I just figured out to keep most my weight back and sit back on the off speed pitches. I definitely got more comfortable just letting the ball travel to me as opposed to just jabbing at it. Besides that, I really thought I improved my blocking skills this summer, while also becoming more of a leader."
The accolades are a culmination of hard work for the Winder, Ga., native, who was a seventh round pick by the Texas Rangers coming out of Winder-Barrow High School before opting to play for head coach Mike Sansing at Kennesaw State.
"It's truly an honor for Max," said Sansing. "Knowing the quality of players in the running for the award, it's obviously a huge step for him. He faced great competition this summer, but this is based off of his past three years of hard work and I'm just so happy to see it paying off for him."
As a freshman at KSU, he batted just .267 with 17 RBIs, with some gap power, but no home runs. Following that campaign, Pentecost went off to the New England Collegiate League for the summer, where he batted .303 for the Holyoke Blue Sox and impressed the Bourne Braves enough to give him a shot the following summer in the process.
Pentecost put together a .302 season at the plate for the Owls this past spring before joining the Bourne Braves over the summer months. Along with the third highest batting average on the team, the KSU catcher was good for 36 runs, 12 doubles four triples and three home runs while catching 13 runners attempting to steal.
"He got back here last week and the first thing I noticed -- his shoulders," said Sansing of his catcher's return to campus. "He's been lifting, his swing looks strong and his hands look quick, he's just physically more impressive, and has gotten much better."