Alan Matthews

Mixed Results Cloud Johnson’s Draft Stock

Alan Matthews -Premium Content

For seniors hopeful of being drafted in June, the months leading up to their final high school season can crawl by agonizingly slow. But few in this year's class have awaited Opening Day as eagerly as Cody Johnson. Though Johnson, a laid-back, unassuming 6-foot-5 slugger from the Florida panhandle, rarely feels restless, the start of his senior season represents a fresh start and it couldn't come a moment too soon.

Draft | #2006#Early Draft Preview

Fast Hands In Fort Meade

Alan Matthews -Premium Content

With a population of less than 5,000, it's easy to miss Fort Meade, Fla. But baseball scouts have gone out of their way to find it this spring, in search of the righthanded-hitting center fielder who has shot up the draft charts. Fort Meade is right in the center of the state, about 70 miles east of St. Petersburg. Phosphate mines employ many of the town's residents, including most of Andrew McCutchen's living and past relatives. It's the kind of place where high school athletes are icons and everyone knows everyone.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

Iowa Product Fights Northern Bias

Alan Matthews -Premium Content

isten closely as names are called June 7. And it might not be a bad idea to have an atlas handy. This year's draft crop features players from all corners of the country. Towns like Phenix City, Ala., New Richmond, Ohio, Aurora, Ill., and University Place, Wash., are all likely to produce high-round picks. Crosscheckers and scouting directors have booked flights to several unlikely destinations this spring, and Des Moines, Iowa, features another unlikely prospect with impact potential.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

High Heat: March 24

Alan Matthews -Premium Content

He was just a sophomore in high school, but the groundwork was already laid for this local legend. With his Jackson High Timberwolves facing elimination in the district playoffs, Travis Snider belted a pair of home runs against Edmonds-Woodway High (Edmonds, Wash.). A year later, he furthered his lore as one of the region's top power hitters when he smashed "the shot hear 'round the state."

High School | #2006#High Heat

USA Junior Squad Tops Cuba

Alan Matthews -

USA Baseball's junior national team eagerly awaited the chance to cleanse its palate. Last year's fourth-place finish at the World Junior Championships in Taipei City, Taiwan, ended a 20-year string in which the juniors had earned a medal at the biennial event, leaving it with a sour taste that served as incentive for this year's team as it prepared for international competition.

High School | #2005#Events#Team USA

Pitching Carries Team USA Junior Squad

Alan Matthews -

Team USA continued its otherworldly pitching performance with a 3-0 victory Wednesday against Panama at the COPABE AAA Pan American Junior Championships in Villahermosa, Mexico. Two junior national team pitchers, which consists of 20 of the nation's top players age 18 and under, allowed one hit in the nine-inning game, improving to 4-0 in pool play.

High School | #2005#Events#Team USA

O’Sullivan Stays Busy

Alan Matthews -

In a draft class heavily weighted with two-way standouts, Sean O'Sullivan, a senior righthander from Valhalla High in suburban San Diego has the moves to play professionally on the mound or at the plate. O'Sullivan's package of legitimate pitching and hitting tools is among the most intriguing in the class, and he enters the season ranked as the nation's No. 3 prep prospect.

Draft | #2005#Early Draft Preview