Baseball
    USC Signs Five For 2012 Season
    Interim head baseball coach Frank Cruz signed five players for the 2012 season
    Interim head baseball coach Frank Cruz signed five players for the 2012 season

    Dec. 6, 2010

    LOS ANGELES -- Five players have signed a national letter-of-intent to play for the USC baseball program in 2012, interim head coach Frank Cruz announced today. The signees are: infielder Dante Flores (Norwalk/St. John Bosco HS), outfielder/first baseman Ryan Garvey (Indian Wells/Palm Desert HS), outfielder/pitcher Nigel Nootbaar (El Segundo/El Segundo HS), catcher Garrett Stubbs (La Jolla/Torrey Pines HS) and outfielder/pitcher Steven Tarpley (Gilbert, Ariz./Gilbert HS).

    Here are brief biographies on the key players:

    Dante Flores, IF, 5-10 160 (Norwalk/St. John Bosco HS) -- Flores is rated No. 50 in California by Perfect Game and played in the 2010 Area Code Games along with playing with the Brewers Elite Scout team. He was invited to the 2009 U-16 USA Trials and played in the 2008 and 2009 Southwest Futures All-Star Game. He earned 2008 All-Trinity League first team honors at St. John Bosco High and played on the 2007 gold medal team that won the U-14 Pan Am Games with Team USA.
    Cruz on Flores: "He is a premier West Coast middle infielder. He is a great left-handed hitter that makes consistent contact and has surprising power for his size."

    Ryan Garvey, OF/1B, 6-0 190 (Indian Wells/Palm Desert HS) -- Garvey is the son of former Los Angeles Dodger and San Diego Padre first baseman, Steve. He batted .404 with eight doubles, four triples, six home runs and 46 RBI in his 2010 junior season at Palm Desert High. He was named team most valuable player and offensive player of the year for Palm Desert and named All-CIF and All-Desert League first team. His team won the 2010 CIF championship and was a member of the top-ranked Bulldogs club team that won the 2008 World Wood Bat Tournament. Perfect Game has Garvey rated 21st in California and 115th in the nation.
    Cruz on Garvey: "Ryan has developed into one of the nation's elite hitters. He has that rare combination of being able to hit for average and power."

     

     

    Nigel Nootbaar, RHP/OF, 6-1 185 (El Segundo/El Segundo HS) -- Nootbaar batted .425 with nine doubles, three triples, nine home runs and 47 RBI while recording a 0.98 ERA on the mound in 57 innings with 63 strikeouts in his 2010 junior season. He was named Daily Breeze Player of the Year and earned All-CIF, all-area and all-league first team honors. He was named 2010 Max Preps All-American second team and earned Cal-Hi Sports All-State second team honors. He played in the 2010 Area Code Games and earned 2009 all-league second team honors as a sophomore. He is rated 30th in California by Perfect Game.
    Cruz on Nootbaar: "Nigel is a great athlete. We anticipate he will be a two-way player that will see time on the mound, in the outfield and at first base. We look forward to having his football mentality on the baseball field."

    Garrett Stubbs, C, 5-9 165 (La Jolla/Torrey Pines HS) -- Stubbs batted .345 with 11 doubles and 18 stolen bases in his 2010 junior season. He earned All-CIF Division I second team and All-Avocado League first team honors. He earned 2010 North County Times all-county second team honors and San Diego Union-Tribune all-academic team honors. He was named 2010 team defensive player of the year honors and was a member of the 2008 Avocado League championship team. He is rated No. 77 in the state by Perfect Game.
    Cruz on Stubbs: "Garrett is a true winner. He can play a couple of different positions. He is a polished catcher that brings a lot of intangibles to the table."

    Steven Tarpley, LHP/OF, 6-0 175 (Gilbert, Ariz./Gilbert HS) -- Tarpley batted .362 in his 2010 junior season with four doubles, seven home runs and 24 RBI while earning a 2.92 ERA on the mound with 21 strikeouts. He was an all-conference first team selection in 2009 along with playing in the Area Code Games that year. He is rated fourth in the state of Arizona by Perfect Game.
    Cruz on Tarpley: "Steven is a very exciting pitcher who we anticipate will pitch immediately. From June through November, he has developed as well as any player in the country. He performed very well in the showcases this summer and fall."

    USC opens the 2011 season on Feb. 18 by hosting Cal Poly, North Carolina and Missouri at Dedeaux Field for a yet-to-be-named tournament.