Aug. 16, 2002
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Winthrop All-American right-handed pitcher Ben Thurmond has agreed to accept a scholarship to attend Arizona State University this fall, becoming one of the highest profile transfers during the college baseball offseason.
Thurmond, 5-11, 185, was a 24th round selection of the Chicago Cubs in the 2002 Major League Baseball draft. He is coming off a junior season in which he battled an arm injury to go 4-3 with a 3.52 ERA.
"It's a good fit," commented ASU head coach Pat Murphy. "He is a proven pitcher that has had great success and is hungry to pitch. He recently battled some arm problems, but he can help our program compete. Hopefully he will be healthy and with his experience will play a major role at ASU."
Thurmond, who was a two-way player during his three years at Winthrop, is two years removed from earning All-America status after going 14-3 with a 2.88 ERA as sophomore. During the 2001 season he struck out a Winthrop school record 148 batters in 150.0 innings and pitched 12 complete games. He joined Sun Devil teammate Mike Esposito on the 2001 USA Baseball National Team, going 4-2 with a 2.83 ERA on the Red, White and Blue tour. He entered the 2002 season as a second-team preseason All-American by Collegiate Baseball.
As a freshman Thurmond led the Big South Conference with a 2.41 ERA while going 4-3 with two saves. He was named an honorable mention Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball. Over his three years at Winthrop Thurmond combined to go 22-9 with a 2.87 ERA and struck out 287 batters in 303.2 innings.