Vancena has decided to put his pro career on hold, after being drafted in the 26th round as the 786th overall pick in the 2014 Major League Baseball Draft by the Texas Rangers.
College Baseball Central spoke with the former Lake High School (Ohio) standout and Vancena went on record.
“Getting drafted by any Major League Baseball team is a great honor,” the 6 feet 5 inch 220 pound two way threat stated. “I was open to pro ball, but it just didn’t happen, and I’m happy with where I am. This has always been my number one school.”
Vancena comes in to Michigan leaving destruction in his wake, putting together one of the most impressive high school senior seasons witnessed in a long time.
In 55 innings pitched this past season at Lake; Vancena was a perfect 8-0 on the mound, while only giving up 15 hits, five earned runs, and 10 walks. Even more amazing, he managed 96 strikeouts, and registered a 0.63 ERA and a 0.45 WHIP.
Vancena possesses a four seam fast ball that sits at 91-93 (mph), and has touched 94, along with a two seam fastball that has a lot of movement and sits at 91, as well as a low 80’s curve ball and changeup that sits at 82-84.
“I am looking to add some velocity to my fast ball right now” Vancena said. “I want to start lifting, build muscle, slim down, and I am going to get to the College World Series and win it. I have high expectations.”
Michigan will be glad to add this kind of talent to the roster most assuredly. Head coach Erik Bakich led his 2014 Wolverine team to 30 wins and completed the season tied for fourth place in the Big Ten Conference. U-M also punched a ticket to the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament, in which the squad won two games for the first time since 2008. Vancena’s arrival puts expectations on high immediately for the coming year.
“I grew up a fan of Michigan,” the 18-year-old Millbury, OH. Native pointed out. “They were the second school to offer, and I jumped on it. I can’t wait to put that Maize and Blue on for my first game.”
In talking to Vancena one realizes this kid has the right approach to the game. He already has his goals in place and is going about achieving them as we speak.
If all goes as planned Vancena should be ready to fill a hole in the Wolverine rotation, after the loss of Michigan junior right-handed pitcher James Bourque (Ann Arbor, Mich./Huron) and junior left-handed pitcher Trent Szkutnik (Temperance, Mich./Bedford) who were selected on the third day of the 2014 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
“I am going to work on developing the use of my lower half, and get everything about my mechanics incorporated,” the 2014 Central – All Region 1st Team player expressed. “I kind of go in to my own world out there on the mound, and I like to think of myself as a strategist on the mound. I’m trying to think of what you’re not thinking. Focusing on the batter…just me and the batter, it comes natural.”
Natural is what Vancena encompasses. This kid was born to play ball, and you know that player when you see them – don’t you? That player that just has that swag, and that movement throughout the games moments that makes us as fans look, and smile, and point, and discuss, but most importantly cheer!