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Arkansas baseball coach Dave Van Horn: MLB Draft is too early

Dave Van Horn is hardly alone in the opinion he levied Tuesday.

The MLB Draft is too early in the summer.

The Arkansas baseball head coach, heading into his 22nd season with the Razorbacks, spoke with the media on Tuesday ahead of the Diamond Hogs’ season-opening series against James Madison, which begins on Friday. Van Horn, who is no stranger to having his best players taken, isn’t a fan of where the draft currently sits in the calendar.

“he numbers don’t add up if enough kids don’t sign,” Van Horn said. “But you’ve got to have enough to compete in our league. It’s a tough pull. We need more time to get our roster squared away.”

What he means is when Arkansas or, really, any other team, is recruiting, if a player decides to turn pro when he is taken in mid-July, college teams are left in a bind. It’s too late at that point to hit the recruiting trail to make up for the loss of those bodies.

Most recently, the Diamond Hogs lost six players to the draft, including Aidan Miller, a third baseman who would have been in position to start this season. Instead, Miller chose to ink with the Philadelphia Phillies after being selected in the first round.

“You just have to get your guys in and hope the culture of your program will handle it,” Van Horn said. “It’s just like NIL and anything else. It’s what we have to deal with and that’s the way we have to go about it.”

The good news for Arkansas is that the losses from the summer don’t seem to have damaged the Diamond Hogs’ prospects for the 2024 season. Arkansas is ranked in the top four in all major college baseball polls.

Van Horn and the Razorbacks will go against a JMU in a four-game set starting Friday at 3 p.m.

Story originally appeared on Razorbacks Wire