Charging Lumber Cat

North Little Rock catcher and Arkansas signee Alex Gosser (6-0, 220) is ready to arrive in Fayetteville and throw his bat, glove and arm into the mix for the Razorbacks in 2014.

Perhaps the most exciting thing about former North Little Rock star and future Arkansas catcher Alex Gosser is summed up by the following quote.

In fact, it is something the Razorbacks could likely use from all their hitters on Wednesday morning when they meet Ole Miss in the SEC Tournament at 9:30 a.m.

"I am a real contact hitter and I don't miss when I swing," Gosser said. "The ball seems to find the sweet spot of my bat a lot. I am great hitter and a pretty good catcher. I know it is going to be a step up, but hopefully I can get up there and swing the stick a little bit and help."

Gosser (6-0, 220), hit .431 and .407 his final two high school season with a combined 3 homers and 37 RBIs, 17 walks and only 10 strikeouts in over 150 at bats during the two campaigns.

He brings the lumber and a great knowledge of the strike zone to the plate according to Charging Wildcats head baseball coach Randy Sandefur.

"He is such a good hitter that I let him take some liberties the last four years on normal counts where we didn't let others swing," Sandefur said. "We cut him loose because he understands the strike zone and we knew if we gave him the green light he was not going to go after a pitch he couldn't drive.

"I've been here for four decades now and he is by far the best baseball player to come through North Little Rock as far as a catcher," Sandefur added.

Sandefur believes the Razorbacks are adding a fundamentally solid player.

"Arkansas is getting a rock solid player," Sandefur said. "He is not flashy, just gets the job done. He really receives the ball well and is just one of those guys that just soaks everything in. He will not make a lot of mental mistakes at all."

Gosser is pumped about joining the Razorback program.

"Arkansas is an in an elite group of teams that has a legitimate chance to go to the College World Series year after year," Gosser said. "Obviously I am from North Little Rock and I have always wanted to be a Razorback.

"I had an awesome summer thanks to my coach Joe Caruso," Gosser said. "They came to me after that wanting me to play for them and I said I love to. I am real excited about it."

Caruso is the coach of the East Coast Grays, an elite traveling team that Gosser played for during the summers and one that matched up against competition against talent from a lot of the Southeastern states.

The Grays have a famous alum in current New York Mets pitching sensation Matt Harvey.

"He's been my coach, my mentor, my right hand man," Gosser said Caruso. "He's awesome. We have traveled and play in most of the SEC states and Memphis playing in tournaments."

One of the East Coast Grays tournaments last summer was at Baum Stadium so Gosser - who hit over .500 last summer - got a chance to play at his future college home.

"I have actually hit a couple pretty hard, but the wind pushed them back into the park," Gosser said. "It is an awesome place. The field is great, the stands are packed and awesome. It's like playing in heaven there."

Gosser is excited about the chance to play for Razorback head coach Dave Van Horn and hitting coach Todd Butler.

"He (Van Horn) is an awesome dude," Gosser said. "He loves the game and has been around it forever. He makes me feel like I am the only person that matters. He calls me as much as he can with whatever the rules are.

"I also really like Coach Butler, the hitting coach, who followed me around all summer," Gosser said. "He is a great coach and we got real close. He loves my swing and Coach Van Horn loves my defense so that kind of goes hand in hand."

Gosser's decision to play his college baseball at Arkansas was a big hit with dad Bobby and mom Donna.

"It's a big deal," Gosser said. "I think my parents are going to by an RV to save some money and come watch me play all my games."

Arkansas' current starting catcher is junior Jake Wise, who is expected to be taken in June's Major League Baseball Draft.

"If Jake Wise gets drafted and goes, it helps me out a little as far as playing time, but also if does stay, I can learn from him," Gosser said. "I am excited either way it goes. They have some more catchers coming, but I like competition."

"I just told Coach Van Horn that any way I could help I would be willing to do," Gosser said. "He told me he wins during the season to win the College World Series and that is the only goal that matters."

Sandefur knows that Gosser will be an asset to the Razorback program.

"I know Coach Van Horn pretty well and when he gets there, he'll find out that Alex is really ahead of the curve," Gosser said. "He'll be ahead because of how he works at it, how he approaches the game and how humble he is, which comes from his parents and his faith."

Gosser is likely to be taken in the MLB draft as well, but not high enough for him to turn away from playing college baseball.

"I've been hearing some stuff, but I want this opportunity that I am about to get at Arkansas," Gosser said. "That is what it is about for me."





Alex Gosser





Alex Gosser


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