In the new age of college athletics, transfers are like shiny, new toys for coaches across all sports, especially in the SEC. As we are seeing in portal season for basketball, players are jumping ship for a multitude of reasons.
The same can be said for baseball, as last offseason saw arguably the most high-profile transfers to date. With a stacked pool of players to choose from, Best of Arkansas Sports has put together a Midseason SEC All-Transfer Team.
This squad consists of newcomers from other colleges – mostly from other four-year schools who changed teams via the transfer portal, but junior college transfers were also considered. We were also flexible with the positions in order to produce a list of the top all-around transfers midway through the 2023 season.
(NOTE: Only first-year transfers were considered for this list, so that excludes the likes of Jace Bohrofen at Arkansas and B.T. Riopelle at Florida, who transferred earlier in their careers.)
2023 Midseason SEC Baseball All-Transfer First Team
Starting Pitcher — Paul Skenes (LSU via Air Force)
STATS: 1.14 ERA, 0.61 WHIP, 91 K/8 BB, 47 1/3 IP
A two-time All-American at Air Force, the expectations for Paul Skenes were sky high when he transferred to LSU — and he’s still found a way to exceed them. He has notched double-digit strikeouts in all eight of his starts, each of which have met the criteria for a quality start. He leads the SEC in ERA, strikeouts, batting average against and innings pitched, making him a frontrunner — along with teammate Dylan Crews — for the Golden Spikes Award.
Starting Pitcher — Hunter Hollan (Arkansas via San Jacinto J.C.)
STATS: 3.00 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 39 K/14 BB, 42 IP
Transitioning to Friday night starter for Arkansas, Hunter Hollan has fully embraced and thrived in his new role. Aside from a disastrous outing against Alabama, he has been exceptional, even out-dueling Paul Skenes in Baton Rouge. Hollan is currently top 10 in the SEC in ERA, innings pitched and wins.
Relief Pitcher — Rorik Maltrud (Missouri via New Mexico State)
STATS: 2.88 ERA, 0.79 WHIP, 48 K/8 BB, 34 1/3 IP
Considering he posted a 4.40 ERA over two seasons at New Mexico State, Rorik Maltrud arrived in Columbia, Mo., without much fanfare, but he’s evolved into one of the league’s top relievers. In addition to his ERA dropping to 2.88, he’s averaging 12.6 strikeouts per nine innings, has a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 6.0 and is limiting opponents to a .158 batting average – the latter of which ranks behind only Paul Skenes in the SEC.
Relief Pitcher — Andrew Lindsey (Tennessee via Charlotte)
STATS: 2.01 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, 26 K/8 BB, 22 1/3 IP
After taking a year off from baseball in 2022, former Charlotte pitcher Andrew Lindsey landed at Tennessee and has been a key bullpen arm for the Volunteers. Despite the jump in competition and year away from the game, he’s been even better than he was with the 49ers. His ERA has dropped from 4.89 to 2.01, his WHIP has dropped from 1.47 to 0.90 and his strikeouts have increased from 8.4 per nine innings to 10.5.
Catcher — Mac Guscette (Alabama via Florida)
STATS: .286/.400/.586, .986 OPS, 6 HR, 21 RBI, 13 K/8 BB
A transfer from Florida, Mac Guscette has more than outperformed his 2022 season with the Gators. His batting average is up nearly 50 points and he’s already exceeded last year’s home run (5) and RBI (18) totals. He was particularly productive in Alabama’s series loss to Arkansas two weekends ago, hitting .400 with a home run and a couple of RBIs. Interestingly, the Crimson Tide have been using a two-man rotation at catcher, with Guscette splitting time behind the plate with Dominic Tamez, who is in his second season at Alabama after beginning his career at Arkansas and playing a year at the JUCO level.
First Base — Gavin Casas (South Carolina via Vanderbilt)
STATS: .295/.453/.750, 1.203 OPS, 15 HR, 37 RBI, 36 K/25 BB
A former Vanderbilt Commodore, Gavin Casas played in only 31 games in two seasons for his former team, but has become a mainstay in South Carolina’s lineup. Casas has racked up nine games with two or more hits, including his 4-for-4 day against The Citadel with a home run and 3 RBIs. He currently ranks top 10 in the conference in slugging percentage (10th) and home runs (t-2nd).
Second Base — Will McGillis (South Carolina via Southern Miss)
STATS: .297/.480/.770, 1.250 OPS, 10 HR, 22 RBI, 12 K/16 BB
Coming from a top-notch mid-major program in Southern Miss, Will McGillis has performed admirably for the Gamecocks. In fact, his batting average is up 32 points from his best season with the Golden Eagles and he hasn’t lost his power, with his 10 home runs currently tied for 14th in the SEC. However, McGillis will spend some time on the shelf after breaking his arm when he was hit by a pitch.
Third Base — Tommy White (LSU via North Carolina State)
STATS: .362/.439/.771, 1.210 OPS, 11 HR, 51 RBI, 13 K/8 BB
The big “get” out of the transfer portal last offseason, Tommy White blasted onto the scene with his freshman season at North Carolina State. His .362 average, 27 home runs and 74 RBIs helped him be named a Golden Spikes Award semifinalist his first collegiate season. Now at LSU, he’s picked up where he left off. He’s cut down on his strikeouts while maintaining his high average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage.
Shortstop — Hunter Haas (Texas A&M via Arizona State)
STATS: .383/.477/.563, 1.040 OPS, 4 HR, 20 RBI, 13 K/23 BB
A former member of the Pac-12 All-Defensive Team in 2021 at Arizona State, Hunter Haas has carried that success into his offensive game with the Aggies. Haas has recorded 15 games with multiple hits, including eight with three-plus. Haas’ average ranks top 10 in the SEC and his 49 hits are tied for 5th.
Outfield — Jared Wegner (Arkansas via Creighton)
STATS: .351/.482/.739, 1.221 OPS, 12 HR, 44 RBI, 30 K/26 BB
A first team All-Big East player in 2022, Jared Wegner’s 11 home runs while playing home games at Charles Schwab Field should have prepped Arkansas fans for what was to come in 2023. He is already at 12 this season, which is tied for fifth in the SEC. An RBI machine for the Razorbacks, Wegner has seven games with three-plus RBIs, including his five-RBI game against Oklahoma State in Arlington. Wegner currently ranks in the top 10 in walks, RBIs and home runs in the SEC.
Outfield — Colton Ledbetter (Mississippi State via Samford)
STATS: .339/.487/.568, 1.055 OPS, 6 HR, 38 RBI, 20 K/34 BB
Spending his first two seasons at Samford, Colton Ledbetter has been a bright spot for the Bulldogs midway through the 2023 season. After hitting .318 with 16 home runs and 57 RBIs last season, expectations were high for him as he jumped into the gauntlet of the SEC West – and he hasn’t disappointed. Ledbetter finds himself at the top of the SEC in a multitude of categories, including leading the SEC in walks and being tied for second in stolen bases, tied for 11th in RBIs and ranking 12th in on-base percentage.
Outfield — RJ Schreck (Vanderbilt via Duke)
STATS: .347/.477/.678, 1.155 OPS, 8 HR, 36 RBI, 16 K/22 BB
After putting up solid numbers in four years at Duke, RJ Schreck has taken his game to another level at Vanderbilt. He has 13 multi-hit games this season and has a pair of two-homer games, including one that resulted in an eight-RBI performance against Mississippi State back on March 24.
2023 Midseason SEC Baseball All-Transfer Second Team
Catcher — Hank Bard (Texas A&M via McLennan C.C.)
STATS: .208/.361/.354, .715 OPS, 2 HR, 10 RBI, 9 K/12 BB
First Base — Hunter Gilliam (Kentucky via Longwood)
STATS: .379/.457/.621, 1.077 OPS, 6 HR, 42 RBI, 25 K/14 BB
Second Base — Ed Johnson (Alabama via Tennessee Tech)
STATS: .359/.452/.519, .971 OPS, 4 HR, 27 RBI, 11 K/14 BB
Third Base — Zane Denton (Tennessee via Alabama)
STATS: .278/.426/.619, 1.045 OPS, 8 HR, 34 RBI, 28 K/27 BB
Shortstop — Maui Ahuna (Tennessee via Kansas)
STATS: .288/.414/.563, .977 OPS, 5 HR, 21 RBI, 29 K/15 BB
Outfield — Tavian Josenberger (Arkansas via Kansas)
STATS: .345/.433/.546, .979 OPS, 5 HR, 20 RBI, 23 K/18 BB
Outfield — Jackson Gray (Kentucky via Western Kentucky)
STATS: .319/.487/.504, .991 OPS, 2 HR, 20 RBI, 34 K/21 BB
Outfield — Ethan Groff (Ole Miss via Tulane)
STATS: .345/.473/.569, 1.042 OPS, 5 HR, 35 RBI, 19 K/23 BB
Starting Pitcher — Hurston Waldrep (Florida via Southern Miss
STATS: 4.60 ERA, 1.38 WHIP, 75 K/24 BB, 45 IP
Relief Pitcher — Evan Aschenbeck (Texas A&M via Blinn C.C.)
STATS: 2.59 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, 39 K/7 BB, 31 1/3 IP
Relief Pitcher — Nate Dohm (Mississippi State via Ball State)
STATS: 3.15 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 37 K/8 BB, 34 1/3 IP
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