Franklin High pitcher Octavio Rodriguez committed to Oklahoma University this week.
Rodriguez, a 6-4, 190-pound lefty chose the Sooners over Texas A&M. He also had offers from Oregon, Arkansas and Texas Tech.
“Basically, the Oklahoma pitching coach (Jack Giese) sold me and made me decide to choose Oklahoma over Texas A&M,” said Rodriguez, who is entering his senior year at Franklin. “People told me he was one of the best in the country and I felt that way when I meant him and that he could take me to the next level.”
Rodriguez also said he knew many of the players who had already committed to Oklahoma as he played with them in a Dallas summer league. The Sooners also reached the Super Regional before losing to South Carolina this past season.
Rodriguez said he would not change his mind.
“I’m really excited and I can’t wait,” said Rodriguez.
Rodriguez is a big southpaw who gives opponents trouble. He features a fastball that consistently hits 88-90 mph on the radar gun with a devastating change-up he developed as a sophomore. He also throws a slider and a curveball.
Rodriguez finished the 2011 season with a 1.05 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 33 1/3 innings pitched. He gave up just 29 hits and walked 13.
“He’s a big guy coming from the left-handed side and that makes it difficult on hitters,” Franklin coach Andy Powers said. “You don’t see that very often, plus he’s learning how to pitch and has three maybe four quality pitches. He can definitely play and excel at the next level, especially if he continues to develop.”
Rodriguez is a two-time Perfect Game Underclass High Honorable Mention.