BRYAN -- The Brazos Valley Bombers signed a trio of players to their 2009 roster today who they believe will make a large impact this summer. Clifton Thomas, Joaquin Hinojosa, and Jesse Payne will bring depth and talent to the Bombers this summer as they battle for the Texas Collegiate League crown.
Known for his exceptional defensive ability, Thomas has also been a terror at the plate this season for the Texas A&M-Kingsville Javelinas. In 50 games, the center fielder has hit .330 with 12 doubles, 10 home runs, 37 RBI and 20 stolen bases. Thomas starred at El Cajon Valley High School in San Diego, California as a multi-sport athlete and was selected in the 46th round of the Major League draft by the Texas Rangers. He earned First-Team All-San Diego honors during his senior season after setting an East-County record with 50 stolen bases. Thomas also earned First-Team All-San Diego honors in football his senior season after catching 92 passes.
Much like Tyson Seng, Hinojosa gives the Bombers a talented player capable of playing multiple positions. Playing his sophomore season at Texarkana Junior College, he has hit .404 this season with six doubles, seven home runs, 36 runs and 35 RBI. He also pitched in relief for Texarkana on their way to a Region 14 Eastern Zone conference title.
After an impressive sophomore season at North Central Texas College, Payne has committed to the University of Texas-Arlington for the upcoming season. He led NCTC with a .417 batting average and 35 hits, while providing solid defense at shortstop.