Matt Jones is the online sports director for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A double graduate of the University of Arkansas, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, and voter for the Heisman Trophy.
Plunkett says he will return to Diamond Hogs in 2019
Arkansas catcher Zack Plunkett returns to the plate Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2017, during fall practice at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville.
FAYETTEVILLE Arkansas catcher Zack Plunkett will return to the program in 2019.
Plunkett, a 6-2, 225-pound redshirt junior, was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 37th round of the MLB Draft last month, but wrote on his Instagram page Monday that he has decided to turn down professional baseball this year.
"Very grateful to be drafted by the Diamondbacks, but there's some unfinished business in Fayetteville," Plunkett wrote. "Excited to announce that I'll be calling the Hogs another year."
Plunkett played in seven games off the bench in 2018. He was 2-for-9 and hit a home run during a game against Kentucky on March 17.
Plunkett sat out the 2017 season after transferring from TCU, where he made 19 starts and played in 39 games in two seasons. He and rising sophomore Casey Opitz will be Arkansas' returning catchers next season and will be vying to replace Grant Koch, a fifth-round draft pick who agreed to terms with the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday.
Plunkett is the only drafted Arkansas player to publicly announce he will return in 2019. Right-handed pitcher Isaiah Campbell, a redshirt sophomore who was drafted by the Los Angels Angels in the 24th round, is also expected to return.
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