F-S Wildcat baseball players sign to play college baseball

Keith Pyles/Franklin Favorite

Three members of the Franklin-Simpson High School baseball team signed to play for three colleges, May 8. Jacob Curtis (left) signed to Austin Pea State University, Cole Heinze signed to Volunteer State Community College and Zach Sliger signed to Roane State Community College.

STAFF REPORT

Three members of the Franklin-Simpson High School baseball team signed national letters of intent to play collegiate baseball during a signing ceremony on May 8 at the high school.

Seniors Jacob Curtis signed with Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee; Cole Heinze signed with Volunteer State Community College in Gallatin, Tennessee and Zach Sliger signed with Roane State Community College in Harriman, Tennessee.

Curtis is a catcher on the Wildcats' baseball team and plans to major in business and finance at Austin Peay.

"It has been a long process, but I am very excited and looking forward to playing at Austin Peay. I like the campus, the coaches are great to talk to and looking forward to compete with them," Curtis said. "They seem very excited to have me play for them and looking forward to contribute any way I can as I will be competing for a starting spot."

Heinze is a pitcher and infielder for the Wildcats and will major in in agronomy at Vol State.

"I had options in where I wanted to go and play but I chose Vol State as it is pretty close to home. It is also a junior college school so I have the chance to go to a Division One program after a couple of seasons. I met the coaches and they were nice," Heinze said. "Vol State is a strong team, got a quite a bit of wins over the past few seasons. Coming in, I should be in the starting rotation as the four or the five or be in the bullpen for relief. I'm looking forward to it. My plan is to get a scholarship and transfer to either Western Kentucky University of Murray State University."

Sliger is a third baseman this season for F-S and will major in nursing at Roane State.

"Pretty excited about Roane State. When I went there for my visit, the campus, it's a nice sized, not too big. Everybody can get to know one another and help each other out. They are going to let me redshirt my freshman year and come back and play as a redshirt sophomore and pitch a little bit," Sliger said. "I met the coaches and really like them a lot. One of the coaches pitched for the Philadelphia Phillies and he had Tommy John surgery and so he knows a lot of what I'm going through right now. I plan on getting my pre-nursing, my Associates of Science and then transferring to another university to finish the rest."

F-S Wildcats' head baseball coach Kyle Gammons has had six players in three seasons that have signed a scholarship to play baseball.

"I'm really excited for those three to be signing. They have been a big part of the program over the past three years and got a ton of wins. They were a big part of our 2017 run to the district and region championships," Gammons said. "I am excited for these guys' commitment and that has been their goal to try to play at the next level and I am happy to see that they accomplish that. Those three got in done in the classroom and on the field. They put in countless hours of extra time and work outside of practice. They are good examples for our young kids to see that if you set your mind to it, like those three did, it can be accomplished. I am glad that I could help them pit along the way a little bit and see them reach their goal."

Through May 7, Curtis and Heinze had each played in 27 games during the 2019 season while Sliger had played in 25 games.

Curtis had a .382 batting average, six home runs and 20 RBI. He had 26 hits and had drawn 21 walks.

Heinze had a .284 batting average and five RBI. He had 21 hits and had drawn nine walks. On the mound Heinze had pitched 47 and one third innings in ten games posting a 4-4 won loss record with one save and a 2.22 earned run average allowing 15 earned runs. He had struck out 49 opposing batters and walked 21.

And, Sliger had a .324 batting average and eight RBI. He had 22 hits and had drawn six walks.

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