Rafters Add Pair of Power Right-Handers
Hurlers From Oklahoma and St. Louis Look to Impact Pitching Staff
Wisconsin Rapids, Wis.- The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters have announced the additions of two players to the roster. Right-handed pitchers Keaton Hernandez (Oklahoma) and Luke Sommerfeld (St. Louis) have signed contracts to play for the Rafters during the 2015 season.
RHP-Keaton Hernandez 6’0” 220 lbs (R/R) Junior, Oklahoma
The meteoric rise of Keaton Hernandez is rather impressive considering he did not even play baseball at the high school level, though he did display quite the athletic prowess in another sport. He was a four-year football letterman at Desert Chapel High School in addition to being named Division 2 Christian Schools National Quarterback of the Year in 2008. In 2013 Hernandez saw his first action in collegiate baseball for Northeastern Oklahoma A&M. While there, he was named NJCAA Division I All-American and Region 2 MVP. He spent his next season at Weatherford Junior College where he compiled 54 strikeouts in 52.2 innings of work. Hernandez has gotten off to a good start with the Sooners in 2015, posting a 1.93 ERA in his first 2 innings of work. He is a native of Palm Springs, California and is majoring is Administrative Leadership.
“Keaton is a powerfully built back end of the bullpen arm,” said Rafters field manager Craig Noto. “Coach Pinzino loves his make-up and believes he will be a rock for Oklahoma in the Big 12 Conference this year. Hernandez features an upper 80’s to low 90’s fastball and a good array of off speed pitches. He’s been an All-Star in the California Southern Collegiate Baseball League and we expect him to add experience and solidify our bullpen this summer.”
RHP- Luke Sommerfeld 6’6” 205 lbs (R/R) Freshman, St. Louis
The Rafters are excited to bring a Wisconsin native back to the state for the 2015 Northwoods League season. Sommerfeld is an Elm Grove, Wisconsin native and attended Brookfield Central High School. While at Brookfield Central, Sommerfeld was a 3 sport athlete playing four years of volleyball, four years of baseball, and a year of basketball. The captain of two years led his baseball team to 3 consecutive regional championships. While Sommerfield has only made 1 appearance with the Billikens, it was an efficient one. He threw a 1-2-3 inning back on February 22 versus North Florida. While at St. Louis, Sommerfeld plans on majoring in Sports Business.
“Luke is a big bodied projectable power arm who consistently throws the baseball to the lower part of the zone,” said Noto. “He has been clocked as high as 93 MPH, and I anticipate him making an impact for us either in the rotation or the back end of our bullpen.”
Rafters all-you-can-eat 9-game packs, season tickets and group tickets are on sale now. To purchase your 9-game pack contact Jake Serwe at the Rafters ticket office by calling 715-424-5400 or emailing Jake@RaftersBaseball.com.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 22ndseason of summer collegiate baseball in 2015, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (BOS) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League Website. For more information, visit www.raftersbaseball.com.