(MSU Billings release)
BILLINGS - The baseball coaching staff at Montana State University Billings announced three recruits Thursday. Ethan Babcock, Isaiah Lopez, and Kevin Blair have signed a National Letter of Intent to join the program for the 2020-21 season.
Babcock is a catcher/first baseman from San Diego, California. Lopez can play catcher, first base, and outfield and hails from Temecula, California. Blair plays middle infield and is a native of Portland, Oregon. All three recruits will be true freshmen in their first season with the Yellowjackets.
San Diego, California
6-3 – First Base/Catcher
Babcock played three years of baseball at Scripps Ranch High School under head coach Chris Lamb and earned two letters. In 2019, he was named honorable mention all-western league and helped his team to the western league championship. Babcock also participated in both the San Diego junior showcase and the CBCA showcase. At the plate, he hit .273 with nine runs batted in. Other prep accolades include 2016 pitcher of the year, 2017 city conference champion, two-time union tribune all-academic.
“We are really excited to have Ethan join our baseball club,” said MSUB assistant coach Matt Hape. “He comes from a great family and has an opportunity to be really solid for us behind the dish and at the plate.”
6-2 – Catcher/First Base/Outfield
The right-handed Lopez played high school baseball for the Great Oak High School Wolfpack in Temecula, California before making the decision to play baseball for MSU Billings. He was named 2018 Division III second team all-conference as well as Division II second team all-league. Lopez’s primary position is catcher but has the ability to play first base and outfield. Lopez hit .333 as a freshman and helped his team to a 25-3 record.
“Isaiah meshed with our guys right away and is going to fit right in with our clubhouse,” commented Hape. “He is really solid offensively and we are looking forward to adding his bat to our line up.”
5-9, Shortstop/Second Base/Third Base
Blair played four years of baseball and two years of football at Jesuit High School in Portland, Oregon. As a junior, he was awarded first team all-league in the infield as well as second team all-state. In 31 games played, Blair hit .423 with a 1.042 OPS, 27 runs batted in, and 13 stolen bases. The previous year, Lopez was honorable mention all-league for the Crusaders.
“Kevin has competed really well at the highest level in Oregon,” Hape said. “He will bring some depth and versatility to our middle infield. Kevin is an athletic kid with a great work ethic and we are excited for him to join us next fall and get to work.”
MSUB’s baseball team won its fourth GNAC regular season title in the last five years in 2019, going 33-20 overall and taking a trip to the NCAA Division II region tournament as GNAC post-season champions. The 2020 campaign begins January 31-February 1 with a three game series against Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, California.