Katy Pitcher a Future Arm for Texas

The Katy Tigers are off to another impressive start in 2009 at 9-3 and most recently finishing second in the Klein ISD tournament. As has been the case the last two seasons, right-handed pitcher Keifer Nuncio is leading the Tigers. The future Longhorn is 3-0 this season and 23-4 in his career. Burnt Orange Beat spoke with Nuncio about his senior season and plans as a Longhorn.

Right-handed pitcher Keifer Nuncio has been a staple of the Katy Tigers pitching staff for more than three years. Entering the 2009 season, the Longhorn signee had a career record of 20-4 in addition to three home runs in the 2008 season in which the Tigers went 26-7.

This season, Katy is off to another impressive start at 9-3 with a second place finish at last weekend's Klein ISD tournament. Nuncio, who sports a fastball in the 89-92 range, has three of those victories in three starts.

To go with his sinking fastball, the 6-0, 185-pounder mixes in a curve ball and change up from his ¾ arm angle.

It was Ole Miss that first offered the talented pitcher, but when Texas came calling after last season's playoff series against Bellaire, the recruiting process ended.

"The whole Texas recruitment was interesting," Nuncio said. "I had been recruited by Ole Miss, had visited there with my family and was a couple of days from committing. Texas offered me after the Bellaire playoff series just before I was going to commit to Ole Miss. When Texas offered, it was a no brainer. Texas is where I've always wanted to go since as long as I can remember."

Nuncio, who sports a 78-80 mile per hour curve and a changeup that normally registers 76-78 on the gun, says having a couple of former Houston Heat summer ball teammates at Texas also helped.

"I have a couple of former teammates that are pitching at Texas this year too. I played with Austin Dicharry and Sam Stafford on the Houston Heat. They pitched at Klein Collins last year," Nuncio said.

As is the case with many Texas signees, the major-league draft is something else that prospects have to entertain. That is the case with Nuncio as teams are already making in-home visits and showing up in numbers to watch the senior pitch.

"Of course, the draft runs through my mind. I've had home visits from scouts and they contact me to see when I'm going to pitch. I want to go to Texas more than anything, so we'll just have to see what happens," said Nuncio, who has been tabbed by some publications as one of the top 100 seniors in the country.

While the draft is three months away, the part-time first baseman is concentrating on the season at hand. On Sunday afternoon, Nuncio had a sour taste in his mouth stemming from a Saturday loss to Klein Oak in which a grand slam by the Panthers was called fair and is still being questioned by Katy players and fans.

"I threw good on Friday against Klein. I gave up three hits and we won. We had the chance to win the tournament, but there was a home run called fair with the bases loaded against Klein Oak," Nuncio said.

Nuncio was the 2006 Houston area Newcomer of the Year as a freshman and followed with 18-5A first team all-district selections as a sophomore and junior. He was a pre-season all-greater Houston first team pick headed into the 2009 season.

Katy will play their last tournament of the season this weekend at Spring. Nuncio will likely take the mound for his fourth start of the season on Thursday or Friday.

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