Players from fan-favorite colleges among recent signings
Among the Disco Turkeys’ recent roster signings are highly-skilled young players from some of North Carolina's top college baseball programs.
In the past few days the Disco Turkeys announced signings from players who are freshmen this spring at Wake Forest (Dane Stewart, OF), East Carolina (Austin St. Laurent, IF/P) and UNC Greensboro (Caleb Smith, OF).
Stewart was ranked by Perfect Game as one of the top 500 prospects in the nation in the recruiting class of 2020 before coming to the Demon Deacons. He spent a year at Pro5 Academy after graduating from Raleigh’s Cardinal Gibbons High School in 2019, where he was an all-conference performer.
St. Laurent was also a top-500 prospect in the country out of Western Alamance and among the nation's very best high school short stops. This year, he is spending time on an ECU team that's having a strong season. The No. 11 Pirates will be the top seed in the American Athletic Conference Baseball Championship, which starts Tuesday in Clearwater, Fla. St. Laurent could be a late arrival for the Disco Turkeys if his school fares well in the NCAA Tournament, as expected. Once here, he’ll play in the infield and also pitch out of the bullpen.
A Winston-Salem native and very likely a soon-to-be crowd favorite, Smith was a standout performer at Atkins High School before moving on to the Spartans. While listed for UNC Greensboro as a second baseman, Smith looks to get work in a talented outfield for the Disco Turkeys, along with Stewart.
St. Laurent is far from the only Disco Turkey on a postseason team. The team is represented across the collegiate post-season landscape, including notably with players on Division II powerhouses West Texas A&M (Kix Ferrel, INF; Kason Haggard, INF) and Lindenwood (Alex Canty, 3B) who are real possibilities to send their players to Winston-Salem as Division II national champions.
At the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) Baseball World Series in Easley, SC, meanwhile, local college Carolina University picked up a pair of wins over the weekend in pool play. Disco Turkeys head coach Kirk Cabana is a full-time assistant on the team's coaching staff and three Disco Turkeys players (Logan Conklin, Dino Tharp and Daniel Musser) are competing with the Bruins for the title in their school's first-ever appearance in the national event.
The Disco Turkeys open their season on the road with a challenging match-up against the High Point-Thomasville Hi-Toms on Saturday. With no Cape Cod League last season, the Hi-Toms were arguably the top summer collegiate team in the country in 2020.
In an earlier version of their schedule, the Disco Turkeys were supposed to open with games early this week but scheduling partners and the team agreed to push two early road games into July. With the extra time, the Disco Turkeys now begin practices in Winston-Salem on Wednesday. They play five road games starting Saturday, including three against Coastal Plain League opponents, before their first home game on June 4 at 8 pm against the Martinsville Ponies.