MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — After winning a state championship with St. Albans back in June, it was now-junior pitcher Jake Carr receiving and offer from and then committing to WVU’s 2019 baseball recruiting class.
Scott junior pitcher Carter Lyles in December joined Carr in that class for WVU, while Spring Valley junior left-handed pitcher Cody Sharp committed to Marshall earlier in the fall, adding to the state’s pool of D-I baseball prospects for 2019.
“The coaching staff had heard some good things about me and they came to watch me – they thought I could come in as a freshman and perform for them,” Sharp said. “My family’s excited for me to be close to home (at Marshall) and they can come watch me whenever they want.”
After his sophomore campaign with Spring Valley, Sharp posted just a 0.82 ERA over the summer with the Gamers Baseball Academy.
“I had a tremendous summer this year – I trained hard and started using my lower half more on the mound and it helped a lot,” Sharp said. “I’m trying to get more flexible and use more of my legs, that’s been my main focus.”
Marshall currently has several in-state players on its roster in Huntington’s Andrew Zban, Cabell Midland’s Zac McNeel, Wahama’s Philip Hoffman and Nitro’s Jacob Bradley.
Lyles, meanwhile, emerged statewide as a sophomore at Scott, helping lead the Skyhawks to a 19-9 record and final No. 9 ranking in Class AA.
In a 19-0 win over Westside back in April, Lyles hit three home runs, including a grand slam, collected 10 RBIs and threw a five-inning shutout.
He picked WVU over an offer from Marshall as well.
“Growing up, I’ve always loved Mountaineer nation,” Lyles said. “It’s was an honor to have an honor from Marshall, but I think that WVU is my home and that’s where I’m meant to be.
“I went up to a showcase in Morgantown at WVU,” he continued. “We did a scrimmage and that’s what got their attention. They told me that I had a good arm and good control.”
The offer from Marshall actually came first, but WVU quickly followed.
“I went to a Marshall camp and Coach (Jeff) Waggoner gave me the offer,” Lyles said. “I put it on Twitter and within five minutes, assistant coach Steve Sabins called me. “They told me they were going to give me an offer (as well). It was crazy – I just had to (commit).”
West Virginia currently has a handful of in-state players on its roster as well in Preston’s Jimmy Galusky, Hampshire’s Shane Ennis and Wheeling Park’s Michael Grove.
Cabell Midland senior pitcher was also the lone in-state signee for WVU’s 2018 class as he signed earlier this past fall.