The 2009 “Players to Watch” list was chosen by NCAA Division III baseball coaches across the country, and spotlights a select group of student-athletes at each position. Kaczrowski was one of 24 featured shortstops.
Last spring, Kaczrowski was the 2008 MIAC Co-Player of the Year, the MIAC hitter of the week for the week ending on April 21, and earned D3baseball.com third team All-American honors. He was also named to the first team ABCA/Rawlings All-Region team.
Kaczrowski tore through conference pitching, hitting .500 against MIAC opponents with 18 RBI and 24 runs scored. He hit nine doubles, one triple and four homeruns in 2008. Overall in 2008, Kaczrowski hit .477 to lead the Pipers, with 40 RBI and 54 runs scored.
Over the summer, he lit up the Central Illinois Collegiate League (CICL) while playing for the Danville Dans. Kaczrowski concluded his season in Illinois by being named the Mike Schmidt Player of the Year for the CICL.
After bringing home the first half MVP award in the CICL, Kaczrowski book-ended that by winning the second half MVP honor, which led to him being named the league’s player of the year. The honor comes after a record-setting summer for the shortstop in a league typically dominated by Division I players.
Kaczrowski hit .389 for the Dans this summer and his 79 hits broke the 33-year old record for hits in a single season. The previous record of 77 hits had stood at the top of the record books since 1975. His next-closest competition for the batting title hit .324.
The Pipers will open the 2009 season on Tuesday, February 10 against North Central. The two teams will play a 6:00 p.m. double-header at the Metrodome in Minneapolis.