Madison, WI – February 17, 2009. With today’s signing of Texas A&M freshman pitcher Denny Clement, the Mallards roster now boasts a pair of Aggies for the first time in the franchise’s nine year history. A four-year letterwinner at Cascia Hall Prep. School (Tulsa, Okla.), Clement compiled a 39-8 career record on the mound with 457 strikeouts in 298 innings of work. As a senior he earned All-America honors from Louisville Slugger and MaxPreps after going 9-1 with a 0.42 ERA. He also led the area with 142 strikeouts, earning Tulsa Metro Pitcher of the Year and conference MVP. A standout three-sport athlete, Clement was an Oklahoma All-State selection at running back in leading the Commandos to the 2007 OSSAA Class 2A State Championship that same year. On the wrestling mat he was a three-time individual state champion, claiming titles in 2006, ’07, and ’08. Clement was selected in the 39th round of the 2008 MLB Draft by the Oakland Athletics.
Mallards Manager C.J. Thieleke is excited to get a young power arm in Clement, who he believes will give opposing coaches something to think about in the latter innings of ballgames this summer.
“Denny is a kid who has good enough stuff to strike out anybody and everybody,” said Thieleke.
“We’re excited to help him transition into becoming a pitcher rather than just a thrower. After a full season in A&M’s bullpen Denny definitely won’t be coming to us as a freshman, so we fully expect him to thrive in the highly competitive Northwoods League. If you look up the word ‘competitor’ in Webster’s Dictionary, you’ll find the name ‘Denny Clement.’”
Thieleke points to Clement’s prep wrestling career as being the telling factor behind the youngster’s overall toughness.
“I grew up in Iowa, a hotbed for wrestling, so there isn’t a sport that I have more respect for in terms of developing toughness and tenacity,” said Thieleke.
“For me, that’s a very key attribute for a late-innings pitcher to have, especially since Denny will be given every opportunity to become the Mallards’ closer this summer.”
Did you know?
Denny plans on majoring in Kinesiology with hopes of working in the medical field and becoming a doctor after graduating. Also, his grandfather played at the Triple-A level in the Chicago Cubs organization.