MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – One of the top commits as part of the WVU baseball 2023 recruiting class has made his decision regarding his future in baseball.
Gavin Van Kempen, a right-handed pitcher from Castleton, New York, was selected in the 20th and final round of this year’s Major League Baseball Draft by the St. Louis Cardinals. That is the same franchise that selected WVU outfielder Victor Scott II in the fifth round.
Van Kempen, who recently wrapped up his senior season of high school baseball, announced his future plans on Monday.
“It was an honor to be selected by the Cardinals in the MLB Draft. However, my time at WVU has just begun and I’m not ready to give that up,” he said in a tweet. “We have an incredible group of guys that will send us deep into the season, and our fans are second to none. I will do everything I can to become the best player I can be and help us get to Omaha. Let’s go Mountaineers!”
The New York native will now come to Morgantown with the chance to improve on his draft stock for future years.
Van Kempen is part of a WVU recruiting class that was ranked No. 34 by Perfect Game, and was the fifth consecutive top 40 class for Randy Mazey and company.
He and the 2023 class were announced prior to the group playing their senior seasons of high school baseball.
The right-hander capped off his high school career with a 6-1 record, 0.59 ERA, and 94 strikeouts through just 35 1/3 innings pitched.
Van Kempen is listed at 6 feet 6 inches tall, and with a maximum fastball velocity of 93-94 miles per hour.
Perfect Game ranks him as the No. 7 player, and No. 3 right-handed pitcher in the state of New York.