Inspired by College Baseball Daily’s list of the top 100 college baseball players, BluGrass Baseball is counting down the top 25 returning Kentucky collegians in advance of the 2011 season. We continue the list today with one of 2010’s top freshmen.
No. 11 — RHP Matt Koch — University of Louisville
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Matt Koch returns to UofL as a weekend starting pitcher after moving into that role late in the 2010 season. As a freshman Koch was 3-0 with a 3.27 ERA and 31 strikeouts to go with nine walks in 44 innings pitched. Koch appeared in 11 games for UofL last season, including six starts. Koch surrendered just one run in six innings against Vanderbilt in UofL’s win over the Commodores in the NCAA Regional, earning him a spot on the all-regional team.
Koch moved into the weekend rotation on April 30 in the second game of UofL’s series versus Rutgers and remained there for the rest of the season. Opponents batted just .227 against Koch as a freshman. Koch missed qualifying for the ERA title by 20 innings, but his 3.27 ERA was among the lowest of any Kentucky starter last season. The Iowa native was the 37th round pick of the Boston Red Sox in 2009.