It is with heavy hearts that we pass on this news. Kentucky Baseball Player Ben Jordan, who also played for the basketball team last season, has died at the age of 22. Zack Klemme, sports editor for The Daily Independent in Ashland, shared the news on Twitter this morning.
Grieved to report former West Carter star two-sport athlete Ben Jordan is dead. Jordan was 22.
He played baseball in Kentucky and was also on the Wildcats’ basketball list in 2019-20.
– Zack Klemme (@zklemmeADI) January 12, 2021
During his season as a walk-on, Jordan appeared in two games and took only one shot against Eastern Kentucky. Over the summer, he decided to return to baseball full time. He was a right-handed pitcher for the Cats and played both sports at West Carter High School in Olive Hill, Kentucky, where he was the team’s leading rebounder and shot blocker and eighth in the school’s history in career points. As a senior, he won the Eastern Kentucky Conference Defensive Player of the Year and added EKC First Team honors during his senior season.
“Like so many others in the state of Kentucky, basketball has been a part of my life since I was just a kid,” Jordan said in a statement after joining the basketball team last fall. “When the opportunity opened up to join the British basketball team, I wanted to go into it with an open mind, especially as I stepped away from the sport to focus on baseball. After a few days of practice, it is clear to me that this is something I will commit to.
Baseball has been and will remain my top priority, but I am excited about the opportunity and challenge of competing in two sports that I love to play. I’ve talked to Coach (Nick) Mingione about it, and we did it with his full blessing. I look forward to helping in practice and being a good teammate this season. ”
“I really appreciate that Ben helped our team and agreed to be a part of this,” John Calipari said at the time. “He has a good demeanor and a way around him that really fits well into this team. The guys have already embraced him as one of our own. I think he will be a great addition to this team. ”
As a baseball player, Jordan was an Under Armor All-American in 2016, the Rawlings-Perfect Game Second Team All-American in 2017 and was considered the No. 97 overall baseball prospect and the No. 33 right-handed pitcher in the 2017 class. his freshman year in Kentucky, Jordan returned to the field in 2019, appearing in 10 games and throwing 8.2 total innings, yielding eight hits and seven runs while striking out eight.
Our heart goes out to his family and friends in this devastating time.
UPDATE: UK has confirmed the news.
Our hearts are broken today. Rest easy, @ ben3jordan. You will always be a part of us. ? pic.twitter.com/n94brIHb1B
– Kentucky Baseball (@UKBaseball) January 12, 2021