03/07/2018 10:51 AM
Photo courtesy of NC State Athletics Communications
Thirty former Post 87 HiToms took the field for college baseball teams this season, with countless more members of the CPL HiToms playing collegiately as well.
Here’s a snapshot of some of the top HiTom performers in the early weeks of the season:
Cesar Trejo, UNC-Greensboro – The former CPL and Post 87 HiTom has already expanded upon his 2nd-team All-SoCon selection a season ago with a torrid start at the plate in 2018. He’s hit safely in all 11 games, including six multi-hit games, to raise his average to .488. That mark leads the SoCon and ranks 10th in all of Division I.
Trejo has also swatted 2 home runs and totaled eight more extra base hits, putting his slugging percentage at .902, which also leads the SoCon. It also ranks among the top 15 nationally.
That production vaulted Trejo into the cleanup spot in the order after batting eighth on opening night. He has led UNCG to a 7-4 record to open 2018.
Evan Edwards, NC State – Edwards proved to be a huge part of the CPL HiToms in the summer, batting .355 and belting 13 home runs, all while making just two errors at first base. So far, he has shown that same kind of value to NC State after starring for two seasons at USC-Lancaster.
It took a few games for Edwards to break into the lineup, but he has started every game since knocking his first Division I home run over the wall against Furman on February 24. But Edwards truly announced his presence the following weekend.
On Friday against Bowling Green, Edwards finished 2-for-4 with two home runs and three RBIs. But the encore against Campbell on Saturday was even better—4-for-4 with two home runs, five RBIs, and four runs scored.
Edwards’ five home runs trail only teammate Brett Kinneman for the ACC lead, and his 1.036 slugging percentage ranks fourth nationally. The Wolfpack have opened the season 10-2.
He will return to the HiToms this summer, after competing with the team a season ago and as a member of the Post 87 team for the three seasons prior.
Cody Grosse, Southeastern Louisiana – Grosse’s eight steals on the season rank in the top 10 nationally. He also sports a .340 batting average and a .426 on-base percentage and is a fixture at the top of the Southeastern Louisiana lineup. The Lions are off to an 8-5 start
Randy Norris, Winston-Salem State – Norris has hit safely in 16 of 17 games this season and has torched opposing pitchers to the tune of a .446 batting average. His 10 steals also rank in the top 15 nationally at the Division II level. His presence at the top of the order has led the Rams to an 11-6 record, including a current six-game winning streak.
Hunter Slater, Southern Miss – Slater has started all 11 games for the nationally ranked Golden Eagles, which opened the season with a three-game sweep against in-state rival Mississippi State. Slater boasts a .391 batting average, good for third on the team, while also ranking second on the team in RBIs with 13. The Mobile, Alabama, product played for the HiToms in 2015 and 2016.