The Illinois High School Baseball Coaches Association released its all-state baseball picks on Wednesday, honoring a handful of local players.
Class 2A showcased three area competitors on the 20-man roster in St. Anthony's Ben Hecht and the Teutopolis pitching duo of Jared Waldhoff and Kyle Pruemer. In Class 1A, Windsor/Stew-Stras' Christian Vonderheide and North Clay's Adam Cox got the nod.Waldhoff and Pruemer alternated games on the mound for the Wooden Shoes in the playoffs, helping Teutopolis post a third-place finish in Peoria. The two racked up a record of 16-2 between them, with Waldhoff closing at a perfect 9-0 and Pruemer at 7-2.Pruemer struck out 87 batters in 59 innings, boasting a 0.51 ERA in the process. Waldhoff struck out 64 in 56 frames for a 0.71 ERA.Their presence was also felt at the plate. Pruemer hit .341 with 22 RBIs and five homers, while Waldhoff batted .441 with 30 RBIs and went yard seven times. The pair closed their four-year high school run with three trips to the state tournament, including back-to-back titles in 2010 and 2011.Waldhoff will play for the Blue Devils of Kaskaskia in junior college ball next season, and Pruemer will take his powerful right arm to the Division I Salukis at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale.Hecht, the reigning Class 1A player of the year, adjusted to a tougher division just fine this season. The Illinois State Redbird commit and recent New York Mets draft pick boasted a 2.03 ERA and 4-3 record with four saves. Clocked in the upper 80s, Hecht struck out a whopping 97 batters in only 51.2 innings.Offensively, he led the Bulldogs with 29 runs scored and a team-high batting average of .422. Hecht also had 11 RBIs and 38 total hits.Vonderheide was the ace of the Blue Devils' staff, compiling a sub-1.00 ERA at 0.93 and 9-1 record on the hill. Vonderheide fanned 69 batters in his 52.2 innings, and will be an even bigger force for Windsor/Stew-Stras next year for his senior season. Cox, the youngest area selection as just a sophomore, was a key component to the offensive juggernaut that North Clay had this spring. Batting third, Cox hit .485 with 32 RBIs and a team-high 12 doubles to help the Cardinals average more than eight runs per outing.As well as being a gifted shortstop, Cox also pitched 55.1 innings with a 1.95 ERA. He surrendered just 12 earned runs on the season, closing with an 8-2 record.