Arkansas Signee Heading to Pro Baseball

FT. SMITH — Former Southside baseball standout Mark Clark signed a professional baseball contract Sunday.

The former Rebel, who signed with Arkansas last fall, only to have the Razorbacks pull their scholarship offer last month, signed with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. The signing capped a recent run of good baseball fortunes for Clark.

“I was playing in Joplin this past week and it was one of those weeks where I was on fire, and it just so happened that some scouts liked how I was playing,” Clark said. “After one of the games, he (Tampa scout David Murphy) started talking to me about pro ball. I thought it would be a good fit for me.”

Clark will fly to Port Charlotte on Thursday to begin his professional career. He will spend the month of August working out and playing intrasquad games. He’ll report to minor league spring training camp next spring.

Clark said the Rays signed him as both a catcher and an outfielder.

The 6-foot-4, 205-pound Clark hit 11 home runs in 2013. Despite hitting just three homers last spring, Clark still managed to still lead the team with a .446 average and 32 RBIs.

— Times-Record Staff