Outfielder Andrew Calica is a sophomore at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). The 6-1, 180 lb. switch-hitter is a teammate of ex-HarbourCats David Schuknecht, Robby Nesovic, Cameron Cuneo and Joe Record. He was drafted in the 17th round of the 2012 draft by the Cleveland Indians, although Baseball America had predicted that he might go much higher than that. He was expected to be an impact player in his freshman season at UCSB, but he was plagued by a back injury and only hit .130 in 23 at-bats. Calica is an on-base machine and a classic leadoff hitter who is very patient and controls the strike zone. In his senior year of high school he walked 23 times, yet only struck out on five occasions in 94 at-bats. Even in his disappointing debut season with UCSB, he still managed to register more walks (3) than strikeouts (1). Calica makes good contact and sprays the balls to all fields, so he should fit in nicely somewhere near the top of the HarbourCats batting order. He’s also a good fielder -- he went his entire senior year of high school without committing an error. Calica is one smart ballplayer who will be a lot of fun to watch this summer at Royal Athletic Park.
Is there anything more Canadian than having a Beaver on your team? The HarbourCats just gained one of those by signing power-hitting sophomore Gabe Clark of the Oregon State University (OSU) Beavers. Clark is a 6-0, 210 lb. first baseman from Riverside, California who can also play in the outfield or at third base. He only had a .161 BA / .278 OBP in 31 at-bats in his freshman season at OSU, but the Beavers’ lineup is not exactly easy to crack into as a rookie. Oregon State went on to participate in the 2013 College World Series, finishing the season as the fourth-ranked NCAA team. Clark then won a West Coast League championship with the Corvallis Knights last summer, hitting .198 in 81 regular season at-bats with three homers and 14 RBI. He may end up winning the starting job at first base for OSU this season, and he could be a big run producer in the heart of the HarbourCats lineup.
The first player from the University of Nevada Wolfpack to ever sign with the HarbourCats is pitcher Matt Susac from Roseville, California. The big right-hander has only made five appearances in the last two seasons and he missed all of last year due to elbow surgery. Susac transferred to the University of Nevada from Sacramento City College and spent his freshman season in 2011 hurling for American River College (ARC), where he went 1-2 with a 5.55 ERA in 35 ⅔ innings on the hill. Aside from staying healthy, control has been one of his biggest challenges over the last few years, as he walked 4.6 batters per nine innings in his senior year at Jesuit High School and 5.3 batters per nine with ARC. Susac did post a solid 5-1 record and 2.97 ERA in his final season of high school baseball, so he could surprise some people if he's fully recovered from his surgery.