Outlaws Baseball can be a ticket to college

Derrick Calhoun Star Staff Writer
Monday, July 8, 2019

Not one, not two, not three, but, count’em — Braelen Pippin, Cade Myrick, Dustin Benson and Shane Sinclair — four Miles City Outlaws, will be continuing their baseball careers at the collegiate level.

The mass signings continues a tradtion for the Coach Monty Frare’s travel baseball club, which has sent 21 players to college or professional baseball teams since 2011.

Frare said the four recruits commitment to Outlaws baseball was a factor in their being able to play at a higher level.

“They have all earned what they have. They have put in the work and sacrificed a lot to get where they are,” he said.

Sending four players on to the next level matches the club’s largest total reached in 2012, when the Outlaws saw pitcher Caleb Frare drafted by Major League Baseball’s New York Yankees in the 11th round of MLB annual amateur draft.

Frare currently pitches for the Chicago White Sox’s AAA International League team in Charlotte, North Carolina. He has had two stints on the Major League roster for the White Sox, including at the beginning of this season.

Aside from Frare, Brac Warren, a 2014 Outlaw Baseball Club alum and 2017 University of Oregon Ducks alum, was drafted in the 17th round of the 2017 MLB draft. He is the only other Outlaw alum playing professional baseball.

Warren is currently playing for a San Francisco Giants farm team, the Augusta GreenJackets in the Class A South Atlantic League.

Pippin, Myrick, Benson and Sinclair will play collegiately in 2019-20.

Pippin will pitch for coach Aaron Sutton at Montana State University at Billings. “I know a lot of the guys I’ll be playing with in Billings and it’s going to be a really good year,” Pippin said. “I’m really excited to be going there.”

Pippin has pitched 27 innings. He sports a 2-2 record with 44 strikeouts and a 2.852 ERA.

Pippin also plays the field for the Outlaws, but will be pitching exclusively in Billings.

“We like to see players who not only pitch but play other positions in high school because it shows their athleticism, but we are lucky to have a deep roster that won’t ask pitchers to play other positions as well,” Yellowjackets coach Aaron Sutton said.

Sutton said he has had his eye on Pippin for years, first seeing him in a tournament in Washington while Sutton was on a recruiting trip. Seeing a Montana local talent like that sparked Sutton’s intrigue and he kept watch on Pippin after that.

“We are always excited to be able to keep home-grown talent in state,” Sutton said.

The Yellowjackets have lost some of their top pitchers from this season, so Pippin should see some time on the mound as a freshman, Sutton said.

“It was one of the biggest selling point to Braelen,” Sutton said. “Having the chance to play right away.”

Benson will be headed to Norfolk, Nebraska, to pitch for the Northeast Community College (NCC) Hawks baseball program.

“I have been working toward the goal of playing at the next level and I’m really excited I get the chance to do it,” Benson said.

He has pitched 22 innings for the Outlaws this year, holding a 4.388 ERA with 38 strikeouts.

Coach Marcus Clapp’s Hawks went 37-19 last year in the program’s second season, and advanced to the NJCAA World Series.

Benson will help fill the staff for a team that lost important upperclassmen to fouryear colleges. “We are losing some big pieces but I feel we have a lot of talented kids coming in and I am excited to see what we can do,” Clapp said, adding Benson can be one of those pieces.

“I think he has raw athletic talent as a baseball player with a very high ceiling to develop on the mound,” Clapp said. “He will only continue to get better and that’s what we are looking for: high character kids that are coachable and want to compete and win at the next level.

Myrick will spend next fall in Maricopa County Arizona, as a member of the Chandler Gilbert Community College Coyote baseball team. Head coach Russ Luce’s program went 27-26 last season.

Myrick said he is excited to see his years of hard work pay off.

This season for the Outlaws, Myrick has 24 hits, 21 RBIs and two home runs in 74 at bats with a .419 batting average.

Luce said Myrick was recruited for his offense, and now he has to find a place for him in the field.

“We aren’t sure on a position just yet, but he has a lot of potential at a lot of spots,” Luce said.

Sinclair is headed to Spokane, Washington, to play for the Spokane Falls Community College Bigfoot baseball team.

In 120 at bats Sinclair has 43 hits, 26 RBIs and a .358 batting average for the Outlaws this season. He has pitched just over 48 innings with a 6-1 record, 65 strikeouts and a 2.589 ERA.

Spokane, under coach Bryan Winston, went 31-16 this year.

“I’m really excited. I have worked so hard at the game, I feel, and to be rewarded with the opportunity to continue to play is a dream come true,” Sinclair said.

Outlaws head coach Monty Frare talked about Sinclair, saying he had a really high ceiling and the opportunity to do something not always common at the next level of baseball, which is help a team in the outfield as well as on the pitchers mound.

“It’s not common in baseball at that level which is why he has a lot of value for Spokane,” Frare said.

Frare also mentioned that the program Sinclair will be going to does a really great job of building strength properly.

“Shane will be perfect for that environment because he has a lot of growing to do physically still,” Frare said.

(Contact Derrick Calhoun at 406-234-0450 or mcsportsreporter@gmail.com.)