11/27/09

The Keepers - #12 - OF - Kirk Nieuwenhuis

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12. Kirk Nieuwenhuis – OF –

From: www.apu.edu:

Junior center fielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Baseball America’s 2008 NAIA Preseason Player of the Year, returns after a standout sophomore season to lead the Azusa Pacific offense … Had a breakout summer campaign in which he earned Alaska Baseball League MVP honors … Will be the centerpiece and hit in the middle of the Cougar lineup … Possesses a dangerous power/speed combination … Will make a run at several program career records.

Also from www.apu.edu:

Nieuwenhuis, Baseball America’s 2008 NAIA Preseason Player of the Year and a 2008 NAIA All-American first team selection, batted .400 (90-for-225) with 20 doubles, 15 home runs, 68 RBIs, and a program single-season record 84 runs for the Cougars as they advanced to the NAIA World Series for the second straight season, just the second time in program history the program had made back-to-back World Series trips. Through 3 seasons at Azusa Pacific, Nieuwenhuis has also set 2 career marks with 12 triples and 190 runs.

The 6-foot-3 centerfielder was named the 2007 MVP of the prestigious Alaska Baseball League, a summer collegiate wood-bat league that regularly showcases future professional baseball talent. Nieuwenhuis batted .333 (52-for-156) in 40 games for the Athletes In Action Fire squad, registering 8 doubles, 4 triples, 4 home runs, and team-highs of 35 runs and 30 RBIs.

From: http://naia.cstv.com:

Azusa Pacific (Calif.) University junior centerfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis was selected by the New York Mets with their third-round selection, the 100th overall pick of the 2008 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Nieuwenhuis was the lone NAIA baseball player selected on Day 1. The second and final day of the draft continues on Friday (June 6) from the Disney Sports Complex. For complete coverage of the draft, click here.

"I really had no idea who was going to pick me, or even if I would go the first day (of the 2-day draft)," said Nieuwenhuis. "I had gotten calls from a lot of different teams, and I didn't guess it would be the third round, but God is good, and it came earlier than I expected. I was ecstatic."

Nieuwenhuis, Baseball America's 2008 NAIA Preseason Player of the Year and a 2008 NAIA All-American first team selection, batted .400 (90-for-225) with 20 doubles, 15 home runs, 68 RBIs, and a program single-season record 84 runs for the Cougars as they advanced to the NAIA World Series for the second straight season, just the second time in program history the program had made back-to-back World Series trips. Through through seasons at Azusa Pacific, Nieuwenhuis has also set two career marks with 12 triples and 190 runs.


In August 2009, Nieuwenhuis made the Baseball America Hot List with: “Sorry Kirk, but we just blew the lid off your stealth campaign in the Florida State League. Only a five-homer showing by Brett Wallace in Triple-A stood in the way of a No. 1 ranking. Batting .259/.346/.441 with 15 homers, 27 doubles, 64 RBIs and 16 steals (in 20 attempts), Nieuwenhuis leads the FSL in home runs, extra-base hits (46) and runs scored (81). And he's just four off the leaders for RBIs and doubles. Don't be fooled by that age; the physical, lefty-swinging Nieuwenhuis celebrated a birthday two weeks ago and actually spent most of the season as a 21-year-old. An '08 third-round pick, he skipped right over low Class A on his way from NAIA Azusa Pacific (Calif.) to the FSL this season. It's hard to argue with the results.”

9-9-9 From www.hardballtimes.com: - Nieuwenhuis, a centerfielder out of Azusa Pacific University, was having a pretty good year until August started. Then he had an excellent year. Nieu's combination of speed and power was a lethal combination, leading to a .193 ISO and sixteen stolen bases in twenty tries. With a .383 wOBA in St. Lucie, the lefty, who spent most of the year as a 21 year-old, moved up to Binghamton and finished the year strong, hitting .406/.472/.656 in 36 plate appearances.

In 2009, Nieuwenhuis was third in the league in home runs (16), tied for 5th in RBIs (71), and led the league for St. Lucie with a .367 slugging average.

Forecast:

Very quietly, Nieuwenhuis is becoming quite the draft pick. His test will come in the spring when we begin to find out if he can duplicate this kind of year at the AA level. If he can, this just might be the real deal, folks.

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