Whetsel finds home with Generals

Mike Forman By Mike Forman

July 22, 2017 at 10:21 p.m.

Chase Whetsel, of the Generals, takes a swing during the second inning.

Chase Whetsel, of the Generals, takes a swing during the second inning.   Olivia Vanni for The Victoria Advocate

Victoria Generals coach Michael Oros was looking for an outfielder.

Chase Whetsel was searching for a place to play.

The match proved ideal for both parties.

"Chase kind of fell in our lap," Oros said. "It's worked out great. He's come in and fit exactly into our scheme of what we're trying to do. He's become an everyday player for us."

Whetsel attended summer school after outstanding sophomore season at New Mexico Junior College.

He was hoping for a chance to get back on the field before beginning his junior year at Lamar University.

"I just want to get back into it," Whetsel said. "Get as many bats as I can. See as many baseballs as I can before I head back up to Lamar. I thought it was something I really needed. I'll kind of have a step on people when I get back to school."

Whetsel began high school at Refugio, where he was a member of the Bobcats' 2011 state championship football team.

He transferred to Calallen as a sophomore and made three consecutive appearances in the regional final baseball playoffs with the Wildcats.

Whetsel played at Riverside Stadium for Refugio and Calallen and enjoyed the ballpark.

"This is a stadium I always loved," he said. "I always loved playing in it in high school. It was really nice. Now that they've turfed the infield, it's just an advantage to us guys who can run. I love it. It's a great place."

Whetsel began his college career with Grayson Community College."The freshman year you really learn how to get in the rhythm of things," Whetsel said. "You really learn the basics of things not just with school but with baseball too. You learn how to handle things inside and outside of school."

Whetsel had planned to transfer to San Jacinto Community College before changing his mind and heading to New Mexico Junior College when San Jacinto's assistant Jimmy Durham became the head coach in Hobbs.

The move paid off for Whetsel, who hit .400 with 17 home runs and 56 RBIs, scored 71 runs and had 12 stolen bases.

He was a first-team Western Junior College Athletic Conference selection and was named to the National Junior College Athletic Association Region 5 team.

Whetsel had a number of Division I offers, but decided to join coach Will Davis at Lamar.

"He's a new coach," Whetsel said. "He's a young guy. He's really determined. He wants to win. The facilities are unreal. It's a great program and they have a really big shot to do a lot of different things."

Whetsel hopes to help the Generals win a Texas Collegiate League championship, and Oros has liked what he's seen.

Whetsel went into Saturday night's game against the Acadiana Cane Cutters hitting .304 with a double, three RBIs and three stolen bases.

"He's really got all the tools at the plate and his defense has always been good," Oros said. "He's got quite a future ahead of him."



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