Lynch Will Attend Arkansas

Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn will add left-hander Cade Lynch to his pitching staff for 2011.

Former Valley View standout Cade Lynch will transfer to Arkansas, he said Friday. The left-hander will be eligible as a sophomore in 2011.

Lynch (6-foot-6, 220 pounds) played at Panola Junior College in Carthage, Texas, last season as a freshman. He originally had planned to transfer to Arkansas State, but said he couldn't pass up the opportunity to play in the Southeastern Conference.

"I want to play in that conference," Lynch said. "That was a big plus. I can't wait. It's going to be a blast."

Lynch started a team-high 13 games at Panola in 2010, but struggled in his first year with a 3-4 record and a 4.21 earned run average.

"It was a great learning experience," Lynch said. "We played great competition; the guys we played against every day are going to schools in the Big 12 and the SEC. I feel like I performed pretty well and was able to compete. Hopefully I can bring that to the SEC this year."

Lynch is one of the most decorated pitchers in Arkansas high school history. The southpaw finished his career with a 38-1 record and helped lead Valley View to back-to-back 4A state championships in 2008 and 2009.

Lynch finished both campaigns undefeated and had a career-best 0.92 ERA as a senior.

"I was very fortunate to have a successful career in high school," Lynch said. "I had a good group of guys backing me up and it was a lot of fun."

Lynch adds yet another left-hander to what could be a strong lefty pitching staff for the Razorbacks in 2011. Sophomore Randall Fant and incoming freshman Robbie Ray are also expected to be on campus. Ray was a 12th round draft selection by the Washington Nationals in June's MLB Draft.

Arkansas is also awaiting word whether Drew Smyly will return for the 2011 season. Smyly, a second round draft pick by the Detroit Tigers, has until Aug. 16 to sign a professional contract. Razorback coach Dave Van Horn said last month he is unsure whether the two sides will come to an agreement.

"With Smyly there's always a chance he could come back," Van Horn said. "With him having another year of bargaining power, I think Drew could go in the first round if he came back. He likes it here, he's got a fresh arm because he hasn't been playing this summer and he's getting a little antsy. I think if they don't get it close to his asking price there's always that opportunity for him to come back and we'd love to have him back heading up our pitching staff."

In addition, draft picks Zack Cox (St. Louis Cardinals), Brett Eibner (Kansas City Royals) and Collin Kuhn (Tigers) have yet to come to terms with their respective franchises, nor have right-handed pitching signees Ryne Stanek (Seattle Mariners) or Ben Wells (Chicago Cubs).

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