Baseball recruit Spalding asks for release from WKU

Cole Claybourn

WKU pitching recruit Matt Spalding told the Herald on Friday that he plans to sign with the Boston Red Sox, forgoing his commitment to WKU.

Spalding said he asked for a release from WKU about three weeks ago for “several reasons,” so even if he didn’t sign with the Red Sox, he wouldn’t have come to WKU.

“There were several factors and I felt it was the best decision for me,” he said.

Spalding declined any further comment, including answering questions on whether or not WKU’s head coaching change had any impact.

The Louisville St. Xavier product was drafted in the 29th round of the MLB First Year Player Draft in June and was often regarded as the best high school pitcher in Kentucky.

Spalding told the Herald back in June that he would use the summer to be evaluated by the Red Sox upper management. At the time, he said he was in a “win-win situation” with both options on the table.

“If I don’t sign, I have been fortunate to have a scholarship to Western to get an education and play baseball for a great program,” he said in June.

Spalding’s decision comes just three days before the Aug. 15 deadline for players to sign with Major League teams.

Jerad Eickhoff, a pitching prospect from Olney Central Community College who was scheduled to be on the Hill this year,  also decided against sticking with WKU and signed with the Texas Rangers, who drafted him in the 15th round.