Nate Rupiper C/University of Memphis Connor White C/Monmouth University

By: Dutchmen Front Office

The key to any successful team is always being solid up the middle. Defense in center field, at shortstop, and behind the plate is of the upmost importance. Strong catchers are not only able to control the infield but are also responsible for keeping the pitchers focused and confident. With that in mind, Albany made sure to secure two strong defensive catchers for the 2013 season.

Memphis sophomore Nate Rupiper came to the Tigers organization from Collierville, Tennessee after earning All-State, All-Region, All-Conference, and All-Metro honors while hitting over .400 in two high school seasons. As a freshman, he appeared in twelve games, making six starts behind the dish, and compiling a .379 batting average. So far in his sophomore season, Rupiper has hit .279 with a .404 on-base percentage, while playing errorless defense behind the plate.

He’ll be joined behind the dish by Connor White from Monmouth University. An All-State selection from Wall, New Jersey, White comes to the Dutchmen with a reputation as a tough, gritty player. He hit .512 with four home runs and 27 RBIs during his senior year of high school on his way to being named Catcher and Hitter of the year. However, he makes his biggest impressions with his defense where he possesses a 1.8 pop time and a physical blocking mentality. So far in his freshman season, White has hit .263, knocking in 14 runs and compiling a .387 on-base percentage, while throwing out over 20% of baserunners.

With solid talent behind the plate, the Dutchmen hope that these two catchers can help lead a skilled pitching staff and help make the team strong defensively in all areas.

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