Kerbow next ace in line at The Woodlands
The lineage of great pitchers to come through The Woodlands dates back decades from Major Leaguers Kyle Drabek, Jameson Taillon and Kevin McCanna to college baseball talents Chris Andristos (Texas A&M), Will Swope (Texas) and Devin Fontenot (LSU).
So, who is next?
Senior Dylan Kerbow will be the Highlander ace in 2021 after losing his junior year to COVID cancelling the season.
"It was really disappointing, because we were loaded and had a real shot at state last spring," he said. "I've had a good summer and look forward to the fall ball tournaments coming up."
Kerbow verbally committed to Texas State entering his junior year after hitting a few Bobcat camps and their coaches following him through the showcase circuit.
"I really like the coaches and what was really the difference-maker was that they were recruiting me as a two-way player," he said. "Being able to play the field, hit and pitch was key for me."
Kerbow hits 91-MPH consistently but it's his versatility that makes him so coveted by college and potentially pro scouts.
"I can beat people with my fastball, but I can locate well," he said. "I have a good curve ball and I think my change-up is my best pitch. I love to change speed, so people don't just sit on the fastball. A good team can get ready for that."
There's not a ton of tread on Kerbow's tires. He grew up playing golf, following in his dad's footsteps, who played at Texas. He picked up baseball at a young age but then also added basketball and football through middle school. After ninth grade, it would be straight baseball.
"It came down to baseball and football and I had to go straight baseball," he said. "I just didn't want to risk my future after I banged up my knee in football."
He played on a local select baseball team coming up before joining EPA and finally the Hunter Pence Academy.
"I had to go somewhere where I would get the right exposure," he said. "Hunter Pence has helped a lot. Along with my dad, who has kept me motivated. He'll drops whatever he's doing to go hit or get some throws in. He sacrifices a lot. Coach (Ron) Eastman has also been a great mentor for me. He's seen so many great players come through The Woodlands and he makes us better people."
For now, Kerbow is practicing every day and is in a throwing program. After the fall ball slate wraps up in early December, he will shut it down until the high school season which gets going in late January.
"I'm just going to be taking care of my arm, staying health and preparing my body for the season," he said. "I'll do some fishing, play some basketball and hang out with friends too."
There will also be discussions with pro scouts as the 2021 MLB Draft starts to identify prospects.
"I really do want to make baseball a career," he said. "A couple of pro teams have started to reach out to me, so we will see how that plays out. But for now, I'm just on the grind."