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BASEBALL RECRUITING: Lake Orion southpaw, Mr. Baseball-contender Schaenzer chooses Kentucky

By: Scott Burnstein, August 5, 2013, 9:00 am

LAKE ORION – The state of Kentucky is known for its horse-breeding.

Well, the University of Kentucky came into Michigan over the weekend and snared itself a genuine thoroughbred on the baseball diamond.

On Saturday, Lake Orion lefty hurler Brad Schaenzer, an incoming senior and one of the candidates for the 2014 Mr. Baseball award, committed to play in college with the Wildcats, bringing a conclusion to an intense recruiting process.

He had scholarship offers from a boatload of prestigious Division I diamond programs, many spawning from hotbed areas in the south and out on the west coast.

Selected a Louisville Slugger pre-season All-American prior to the opening of the 2013 campaign as only a junior, Schaenzer (6-foot-2, 210 pounds) went 8-2 on the mound, sporting a 1.47 ERA and striking out 77 batters in 57 innings of work.

Composed and consistent toeing the slab, Schaenzer has a deadly change-up-slider combination and velocity on his fast ball that flirts with 90 MHP.

An all-state pick following the season, he helped take Lake Orion to its second straight district title and its first regional crown in six years. Joining him in the Dragons’ almost too-good-to-be-true pitching rotation was departing senior Nick Deeg (Central Michigan-Detroit Tigers draftee) and fellow incoming senior Josh Bays (Western Michigan).

Over the summer months, Schaenzer has been playing with the Midwest Elite for his travel ball.

In the fall, he’s Lake Orion’s starting punter on the Dragons state-power football team.

His brother, Cole, was an ace on the bump for Lake Orion a couple years back and currently pitches in college at Valparaiso in Indiana. Demonstrating his durability, the elder Schaenzer, who was a starting wide receiver on the gridiron, assumed the reins under center at quarterback for the Dragons as a senior in the 2010 playoffs, miraculously navigating them to a state championship.

Kentucky finished 30-25 in 2013.

This is the second time in the past three years the Wildcats have been able to pull a “sneak attack” on the Metro Detroit diamond-recruiting scene and walk away with a top-echelon talent. In 2011, Kentucky signed Madison Heights Lamphere all-state catcher Greg Fettes, currently about to be a redshirt sophomore in college in the Bluegrass State.