Ohio State Offer Ends In Commitment For Burdette


Bruce Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Senior Writer

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Ohio State Offer Ends In Commitment For Burdette

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Clayton Burdette

Class of 2023 / SS

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2023
  • Primary Position: SS
    Secondary Position: RHP
  • High School: Moeller
    State: OH
  • Summer Team: Midland
  • Height: 6-3
    Weight: 180lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/R

Statistics

Pitching
91
Max FB
(03/31/21)
87 - 90
FB
(03/31/21)
70 - 73
CB
(03/31/21)
79 - 80
CH
(03/31/21)
Pitching
Max FB
91
FB
87 - 90
CB
70 - 73
CH
79 - 80
Pitching
Max FB
83
FB
80 - 83
CB
66 - 67
Pitching
Max FB
83
FB
79 - 83
CB
66 - 68
Position
7.14
60-yard
(05/10/19)
74
INF Velo
90
Exit Velo
(05/10/19)

Ohio State Offer Ends In Commitment For Burdette

CINCINNATI - The plan was to take recruitment slowly. But when the time proved right, Clay Burdette jumped at the opportunity.

“From the get-go I wanted to take it slow,” the Moeller sophomore explained. “The process started last fall and into the winter it was a little slower. But in the summer it started to heat up. I wanted to take it slow but if I found the right fit there was no reason to wait around.”

In early September, the top-rated 2023 right-handed pitcher in the state was a Buckeye commit.

“I have the utmost confidence in the staff at Ohio State,” Burdette said. “I’m really confident in my decision.”

Conversation with OSU began last fall.

“I had a call with coach (Matt) Angle and we developed a relationship,” Burdette reflected. “I got to campus in the winter for a camp so I was around all of the coaches which helped a lot. From there on out through the summer season I had a strong relationship with (pitching) coach (Dan) DeLucia. Between all of that, everyone made me feel almost like I was on the team.”

An offer came three months ago, with an American Athletic Conference school and a Mid-American Conference school also under consideration by the 53rd-ranked 2023 RHP in the nation.

“It just felt like home to me,” Burdette reasoned as to why Ohio State was his top choice. “It’s only an hour-and-a-half away so it’s not too far. My relationship with, specifically coach DeLucia, felt like he’s already putting time in developing me even before I committed.”

The OSU staff saw a lot to like in the 244th-rated sophomore in the country.

“I think they like the possibility that I may be able to affect the game from both sides, on offense and as a pitcher,” the 6-3 180-pounder noted. “My versatility is one of the things they like.”

The chance to both pitch and play the field is a major plus in the eyes of the second-ranked 2023 in Ohio.

“It definitely was important to me,” admitted Burdette, a shortstop when not on the mound. “I want to do both for as long as I can. I want to develop both until the time seems right to just do one. Hopefully that time doesn’t come for a long time. I just have to let it all work out.”

Burdette understands the commitment needed to be a two-way player in the Big 10.

“Obviously with practice there will be people just pitching and people just being position players,” Burdette said. “It will take extra reps outside of practice to do both. If you really want to do it you can, it just takes a lot more work. You’ve got to manage your workload on the arm and manage your throwing.”

Making strides as a pitcher is currently the biggest focus for Burdette.

“I’m working on getting into my legs more,” Burdette explained. “I’ve been using a lot of my upper body, so I’m doing drills to obtain more of an efficient delivery to help get my arm on time.”

Playing at the next level is a dream come true for the 16-year-old.

“Growing up I always loved baseball,” Burdette said. “I’d go in my backyard and pitch by myself. Ever since then it’s been a goal of mine to play college baseball. Then this past fall when I started getting calls and talking to coaches saying - ‘I think you have the skill set and ability to play at a high level’ - it all started becoming realistic.”

Burdette, who at the Ohio Future 50 two years ago was judged to have the best movement on his fastball and best swing at the plate, points to a number of people that proved helpful along the way.

“Every single coach I’ve had, especially my high school coach (Tim) Held, has been a part of this,” Burdette said. “The entire Midland organization and coach Bart (Hammack) have facilitated a lot of this. Another person that helped with Ohio State was my pitching coach Greg Williams. I also want to thank coach (Jordan) Chiero (PBR Ohio Director of Scouting) and the PBR staff which has helped tremendously to get my name out there.”

With a 4.1 weighted GPA, Burdette looks forward to the challenges ahead and what he can bring at the next level.

“A goal of mine is to be the guy that can get there and prove he can play right away,” Burdette noted. “I feel I can get the job done with my performance on the field and off the field in the classroom and in the weight room. I also feel I can bring leadership to the program and have a positive effect pitching and on the offensive side.”

Whether it was slow or moving along quickly, Burdette is happy to have the recruiting process over.

“At first I didn’t know what it would be like, but once I got the first call it kind of took off,” Burdette related. “This spring it got more serious. It was definitely stressful, but it was a good experience. I’m grateful to have been in that position.

“It’s awesome to have it off my shoulders,” added Burdette, who a week before committing made another trip to OSU helping an older sister move onto campus. “Now I look forward to focusing on Ohio State and my development. The real work is just starting with trying to prove I can play there.”