MSU Baseball Signees Update

Several of Mississippi State's baseball signees - pitchers Caleb Reed, Nick Routt, Tyler Johnson and Devin Jones - gave their thoughts about Mississippi State head baseball coach Ron Polk retiring and the upcoming Major League Baseball draft.

"It's hard because I really wanted to play for him, but I know that Mississippi State will hire the coach that is good for the team and the program," said Bayou Academy right-handed pitcher Caleb Reed (5-10, 195) who inked a scholarship with State during the fall signing period.

Nick Routt, also a fall signee, expressed pretty much the same feelings.

"I would love to be coached by one of the greatest baseball coaches of all time," he said. "That would be awesome, but if it doesn't work out, it doesn't work out."

Nick, a 6-4, 208-pound left-hander who throws in the 87-89 range, has received a little interest from Major League Baseball scouts, but appears to be leaning to college at the moment.

"It's every kid's dream to play pro baseball," noted Nick. "But right now I'm leaning toward college because I haven't gotten that much interest from the scouts."

Fall signee Tyler Johnson (RHP, 6-2, 190) also hasn't let the retirement affect his feelings about Mississippi State.

"I was really looking forward to playing for him, but I know they will get someone good to replace him," said Tyler.

As for Major League Baseball, it appears that will come after his college career has concluded.

"Scouts are talking to me, but not too much," said Tyler, who normally pitched in front of 4 to 5 scouts a game this past season. "I don't think I will go that high (in the draft), and I'm not sure I am going that route yet. It would be nice to get drafted, but you have to see what the situation is and where you are going to be put, the organization and things like that."

LHP Devin Jones, like the others, will miss the chance to play for Polk, but also understands.

"It would have been great to play for one of the greatest coaches there is, but I understand he had to do what was best for him," said Devin, one of the top two senior players in the state of Mississippi this year. "I appreciate him signing me, along with the other recruits."

As for his feelings about Mississippi State, Polk retiring didn't affect that at all.

"Mississippi State is Mississippi State, it doesn't affect how I feel about it," said Devin, who was told by a pro scout that he consistently threw his fastball 91-92 miles per hour with a high of 94 his last outing of the season.

The burning question with MSU fans is will he be at Mississippi State next year or will he be playing pro ball if he's drafted in the Major League Baseball draft?

"Scouts have told me I could go anywhere from the top 3 to 4 rounds to somewhere in between the 5th and 10th rounds," said the youngster who averaged 4 to 5 Major League Baseball scouts a game with a high of 12 early in the year during the just-completed season. "But with the draft you never know what is going to happen."

While he can't control the draft, he does control one thing.

"I have a certain (dollar) figure in my head. They'll have to come up with that for me to sign," said Devin.

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the website, the source for Mississippi State sports on the sports network. You can contact him by emailing

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