The last Saturday in April was a difficult time for Ole Miss baseball. With Double Decker convening across town, the Rebels were busy dropping a doubleheader to Arkansas in devastating fashion – first in extra innings and finally in a late-night blowout.
The day was a relative disaster, but three months later, a silver lining has emerged.
That dreadful day was visit day for Alex Yarbrough, and the young shortstop didn't let a defeat stop him from making a decision – Ole Miss was the place for his college career to take place.
Moving the Rebels to the top of his list, Yarbrough's wait for an offer was finally rewarded July 22nd when recruiting coordinator Rob Reinstetle made the call. Committing happened moments later.
"It was very exciting to pick up that offer," said Yarbrough, who is rated as the No. 154 overall prospect nationally by Perfect Game. "The crowds and the electricity at Ole Miss games are unmatched. Plus, you know there is the chance for big things every season. Being there makes you want to be on the field in front of that atmosphere."
Yarbrough's first look at the Rebels came away from Swayze Field, as the Dallas native made the short trek for Ole Miss' Sunday game at TCU in March. The Horned Frogs edged Ole Miss 2-1, but the hospitality of the Rebel contingent left an early mark.
"They asked me if I played ball, and I received a lot of information once I said I was interested in Ole Miss," Yarbrough said. "The fans told me all about the success and about the players going pro. It was great to see a group that really cares about the program."
Yarbrough is superb defensively, having made just three errors in his junior season where he earned District Defensive Player of the Year honors, and the switch hitter features gap power that displays his above average speed (6.85 60 time).
As a member of the Dallas Mustangs summer team, Yarbrough hit .455 and has a tremendous upside, being that he just turned 16 years old.
"I am a young senior, so this year is about getting stronger and improving my speed," Yarbrough said. "I'm not slow by any means, but that is something I can utilize hopefully in college."
Yarbrough, who selected the Rebels over TCU, Marshall and Baylor, is hoping for immediate playing time after this past season when the shortstop position was far from settled at Ole Miss.
"I have a chance for at least a little early playing time," Yarbrough said. "Coach Reinstetle explained their problems from last year. Ole Miss has talented players, and it is just good that I have a shot. That is all you can ask for."
The Rebels have added Kevin Mort to the 2008 signing class, while Tim Ferguson is a rising sophomore who may play shortstop or second base next season. Evan Button is eligible to be a senior in 2009 after a medical redshirt this past season.
Shortstop Set to Join Rebs
OM Spirit Top Stories
Spring Football: Photo Gallery XIOle Miss returned to the practice fields off of spring break with a week of full-pad practices. Now the Rebels are set to usher in week No. 4. Photos courtesy of Petre Thomas.
OM SpiritYesterday at 10:00 PM
Marquee MarquisThere's no doubt senior Rebel DE Marquis Haynes is a marquee player for the Ole Miss defense and it was important for the team that he decided to come back for his senior year…
OM SpiritYesterday at 10:00 PM
UA Dallas: Defensive PreviewScout identifies some of the top-rated defensive prospects expected to compete at Sunday's Under Armour Dalllas regional camp.
Scout FootballYesterday at 2:50 PM
UA Dallas: Offensive PreviewScout previews some of the top 2018 offensive prospects expected to compete at Sunday's UnderArmour Dallas camp at Cedar Hill High School.
Scout FootballYesterday at 1:55 PM
Mississippians in New Orleans Nike RegionalsSeveral of Mississippi's top prospects attended the Nike Regional that was held in New Orleans last week. The results are in.
OM SpiritYesterday at 11:31 AM