HawkeyeReport - Iowa lands baseball commit with Hawkeye ties
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Iowa lands baseball commit with Hawkeye ties

The grandson of Dan Gable has given his pledge to Iowa baseball. Photo: CR Gazette
The grandson of Dan Gable has given his pledge to Iowa baseball. Photo: CR Gazette

Coach Heller landed his fourth commit of the 2022 class Wednesday night, in the form of Iowa City High SS Gable Mitchell. Gable announced his commitment to the Iowa Baseball program via his Instagram Wednesday night.

The story of Gable goes a little bit deeper than just another commitment to the Hawkeyes, but first, a little info on the Little Hawks shortstop. Perfect Game rates Mitchell as the #2 SS and #7 overall prospect in Iowa for the 2022 class. He also is rated the #145 overall SS prospect in the country.

This season for the Little Hawks, Mitchell was the only player to start all 42 games in the season, batting .352 and posting a .454 OBP. Gable was second on the team in RBIs and had more walks (24) than strikeouts (9). He also has some good speed, stealing 32 bases on 36 attempts. He also wrestles, plays football, and runs track at Iowa City High.

Gable’s father Brian, the head baseball coach at Iowa City High, shared what he likes about the Iowa program and why he thinks Iowa is a good fit for his son.

“Coach Heller has developed a winning culture with a development focus. They compete at a high level, have been to regionals and seen success and continue to knock on the door to taking the next steps to competing in Omaha.”

Mitchell comes from a family that is well known around the University of Iowa and it starts with his father Brian. Brian, just like his son, played for Iowa City High and was drafted in the 47th Round of the 1995 MLB Draft by the Minnesota Twins. He decided to forgo that selection and headed to the University of Iowa where he played four seasons with the Hawkeyes. He set the career home run record at Iowa, which was later broken and was a First Team All-Big Ten selection.

Upon graduation, Mitchell was selected in the 40th Round of the 1999 MLB Draft by the Toronto Blue Jays, but spent just one season in the minors. He took over as head coach of the Iowa City High baseball team in 2012.

I asked Brian what advice he would give his son, as a former Iowa baseball player, who had a successful career.

“Know that cracking the lineup at Iowa will be a huge challenge and being prepared for the fall is essential. Stay true to your personal goals and aspirations and avoid distractions. Be a great teammate and leader in high school as those skills will be necessary while at the University of Iowa and beyond.”

The Iowa connection continues with Brian’s wife and Gable’s mom, Jenni, as her father is one of the most famous sports figures to ever be around the University of Iowa. Maybe you guessed based on his name. Yes, Gable Mitchell’s grandfather is former Iowa head wrestling coach and Olympic gold medalist Dan Gable.

“The biggest thing my grandpa (Dan) has taught me with sports is that there is never a time where you can be completely satisfied with where you are at…There is always something you can be doing better,” said Mitchell on the influence of his grandfather on his athletic career so far. “That has helped me keep the mindset of finding something to do every day to get better.”

There is definitely no shortage of competitiveness in his family and if you have heard stories of Dan Gable, you know how he takes his competitiveness to the next level. I asked Mitchell which of his parents is the most competitive, but he couldn’t choose one.

“It’s a close call on that…My dad has been my coach for baseball…and in the heat of games I see his competitiveness first hand, but my mom is very competitive and is always cheering and getting very into every game.”

Gable said it means a lot to him on a personal level to be the next one in his family to compete at the University of Iowa, but his focus is on the team first.

“My thing is to come into Iowa with the guys that will be around me, to have the same mindset and to first get to the College World Series and then second, win it all.”

There is no doubt that Gable will join the baseball team in 2022 and give his all for four seasons with the Hawkeyes. It is in his family’s blood to win at the University of Iowa.