Los Angeles Times' high school reporter Eric Sondheimer tweeted breaking news Tuesday evening that Harvard-Westlake High (Studio City, Calif.) righthander Lucas Giolito hit 100 mph in a start against El Camino Real High (Woodland Hills, Calif.). A quick text to head coach Matt LaCour confirmed the report and he assured Baseball America that the guns weren't hot.
"My gun is slow and he hit 97 in the sixth," he said. "The first pitch he threw in warm-ups, you could tell it was different."
Giolito went 6 1/3 innings against El Camino Real, allowing one hit and no walks while striking out eight. [...] Continue Reading »
• Stanford swept Texas this weekend, with the Cardinal outscoring the Longhorns 26-3. The offensive explosion was led by outfielder Jake Stewart, who went 7-for-13 on the weekend with two doubles, a home run and two stolen bases. Shortstop Kenny Diekroeger went 6-for-12 with three doubles and a stolen base, as well. Righthander Mark Appel pitched well Friday night, giving up one run on three hits over seven innings. He walked three and struck out 10 for the win.
• Louisiana State righthander Kevin Gausman shut down Appalachian State Friday night, scattering four hits over seven scoreless innings. The draft-eligible sophomore sat at 95 mph and didn't allow a walk and struck out seven. On the season, Gausman improved to 2-0, 0.69 with two walks and 14 strikeouts over 13 innings. LSU will take on Dartmouth at home next weekend.
• Texas A&M righthander Michael Wacha cruised through the Holy Cross lineup, striking out 11 over seven innings of work. Wacha has been stingy so far this season. He's only given up three hits over 13 innings and has yet to issue a walk. The Aggies host Michigan State next weekend.
• Texas Tech center fielder Barrett Barnes shined at the Brooks Wallace Memorial Classic, going 6-for-12 with a double, two home runs (one of which was inside-the-park), six walks and four stolen bases. On the season, Barnes is now hitting .464/.583/.857 and the Red Raiders will spend next weekend at Minute Maid Park for the Houston College Classic.
• Lefthander Tim Cooney is off to a great start for Wake Forest. Against Cincinnati on Saturday, Cooney allowed just three hits over seven scoreless innings while walking three and striking out 10. On the season, he is 1-1, 1.42 with six walks and 21 strikeouts over 13 innings.
Here are all of the weekend stats for the nation's top draft-eligible college players, listed alphabetically by school. The stats were collected by CollegeSplits.com. Follow CollegeSplits on Twitter @collegesplits. The list of players was selected before the season to include this year's top college talent for the draft.
In Georgia Southern's second game Feb. 25 against Radford, Eagles right fielder Victor Roache left the game in the second inning with an injury after diving for a ball.
Roache fractured his radius and dislocated his wrist.
"He was just playing hard, like he always does, and he came in on a ball and was diving straight ahead and his hand got caught in an awkward position," Georgia Southern head coach Rodney Hennon said. "You could tell when he fell, it looked like he was hurt pretty bad. . . It's about as sick of a feeling I've ever had on a baseball field. It kind of made you sick to your stomach to watch."
This marks the second-straight year a preseason All-American has been sidelined with a broken wrist and Roache's injury sounds similar to what Jackie Bradley went through at South Carolina last year.
According to Roache's Twitter feed, he said he could miss the rest of the season.
"He's a strong kid and he's had to deal with adversity before," Hennon said. "I know he'll make the best of this situation. He actually broke his ankle in the fall a year ago and went through that whole rehab process and came back strong from that. I'm sure he'll do the same with this injury."
Last year, with offense down in college baseball after the new bat regulations, Roache went out and hit .326/.428/.778 with 30 home runs. It was the most home runs in college baseball since Billy Becher hit 33 in 2003 for New Mexico State and more home runs than two of the teams (Virginia and Texas) that made it to the 2011 College World Series.
He entered the season ranked No. 9 on our Top 100 prospect list for the 2012 draft and was hitting .412/.600/.765 with two home runs this year before the injury.
Updated Feb. 27 with quotes and more detail.
Duke righthander Marcus Stroman had a rough transition to his starting role last week against Texas, walking six batters over five innings and taking the loss. While he didn't get a win in Week Two against Canisius, the results were a lot better.
Stroman didn't show the 97 mph fastball he flashed out of Team USA's bullpen this summer, but that's to be expected. His velocity was still above-average, sitting in the 92-94 mph range, and he held that velocity throughout the game. His final pitch of the game—and he threw about 100 of them—was clocked at 93 mph.
Stroman's slider was even more impressive. The pitch started out in the 79-82 mph range—with its typical sharp break and hard tilt—but it really gained steam as the game went on. In the later innings, the pitch was Wiffle ball-like in the 85-86 mph range. He also showed a 91 mph cutter.
In the fourth inning, Stroman began to mix in some changeups, and the 82-84 mph pitch moved just like his fastball, with very good fade and a little sink.
Stroman set up on the first-base side of the rubber and showed very good athleticism on the mound. He pitched with a quick pace, but did vary his tempo with runners on.
Stroman allowed two runs on six hits over seven innings. He walked two and struck out 10. He was in line to leave with a lead, but with two outs in the seventh inning and a runner on second base, Canisus second baseman Jose Torralba roped a single to tie the game at two and Canisus eventually won, 4-3 in the 10th inning.
Stroman will look for his first win of the season next Friday against George Washington.
Just a week into college baseball's season, scouts in the West are starting to chatter about San Francisco junior righthander Kyle Zimmer as a legitimate early candidate for the No. 1 overall pick. Expect scouts to flock to USF on Friday for Zimmer's matchup against dogged Missouri junior righty Eric Anderson.
USF's season opener at San Jose State last week was originally scheduled for 6 p.m. at San Jose Municipal Stadium, but the San Jose Giants were reseeding the field so the game had to be moved to Blethen Field and rescheduled for 2 p.m. That allowed the multitude of scouts who were in the area to see Stanford ace Mark Appel that evening to get a look at Zimmer first.
He did not disappoint, and we received multiple glowing reports after his outing.
"His first pitch was 97, the next was 98. He never threw a pitch under 93, and the first 22 pitches were all strikes," a National League area scout said. "He clearly jumped to the front of the pack for being 1-1 (the first pick in the first round). He has the best curveball in the area, and he's an 80 athlete. We're not talking about a guy that just has good stuff. He's an off-the-charts athlete—as good an athlete as you can get."
As we wrote in our preseason feature about Zimmer (subscribers only), he is still new to pitching, having thrown very sparingly in fill-in duty during his high school career, and five innings as a freshman in 2010. A converted corner infielder, the 6-foot-4, 220-pound Zimmer threw 92 innings last spring, capped by a four-hit, 11-strikeout shutout of UCLA in regionals to beat Gerrit Cole. Then Zimmer threw 48 more innings in the Cape Cod League, where he ranked as the No. 8 prospect. [...] Continue Reading »
Just six high school pitchers from Oklahoma have ever been selected in the first round of the draft, and half of them have been in the last three years with lefthander Chad James in 2009 and righthanders Dylan Bundy and Archie Bradley last year.
That recent trend could continue this year with righthander Ty Hensley from Santa Fe High in Edmond.
While Hensley's stuff isn't quite on the same level as his friends Bundy and Bradley, it isn't far behind.
With a big, physical presence on the mound, standing 6-foot-5 and 220 pounds, it's not hard to envision him becoming a workhorse in the middle of a big league rotation. Hensley shows good body control and an in-line delivery. Last summer, his fastball was 91-94 mph and he touched 95. He also throws a quality curveball between 74-78 mph and flashes a 79-80 mph changeup.
"I'll test anybody with my fastball," Hensley said. "That pitch is my bread and butter and you should never shy away from it, no matter who's hitting. I love throwing my breaking ball, my 12-to-6 curveball. I feel like that's my out pitch. And then my changeup has really come along. I've been really proud with the progress I've made with it."
[...] Continue Reading »
As part of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, teams are now assigned an aggregate signing bonus pool for their picks in the first 10 rounds of the draft. Each has a predetermined value, from $7.2 million for the No. 1 choice to $125,000 for pick No. 300 and any subsequent .
Raul Ibanez has agreed to a contract with the Yankees, all but finalizing the draft order. Derrek Lee is the lone potential compensation free agent remaining on the market, but he won't generate a compensation pick if he signs a minor league deal, as expected. Unless Lee gets a major league contract, the aggregate bonus pools below are set in stone.
The pools range from $12,368,200 for the Twins (who own the No. 2 choice and added three selections for the loss of free agents Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel) to $1,645,700 for the Angels (who forfeited their first two picks to sign free agents Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson). The sum of all the pools is $189,903,500, a slight reduction from the $191,876,250 clubs spent on the first 10 rounds of the loaded 2011 draft.
Any team that exceeds its bonus pool by 0-5 percent must pay a 75 percent tax on the overage. The penalties escalate, with a 75 percent tax and the loss of a first-round pick for a 5-10 percent overage; a 100 percent tax and the loss of first- and second-rounders for a 10-15 percent overage; and a 100 percent tax and the loss of two first-rounders for an overage of 15 percent or more.
Below are the bonus pools for each club, along with how much it spent last year on draft bonuses, both in the first 10 rounds and in total.
|Team||Picks||Bonus Pool||2011/Top 10||2011/Total|
Here are the weekend stats for the nation's top draft-eligible college players, listed alphabetically by school. The stats were collected by CollegeSplits.com. Follow CollegeSplits on Twitter @collegesplits. The list of players was selected before the season to include this year's top college talent for the draft. CollegeSplits will start collecting season totals later in the season. . .
|Arizona State||Joey||DeMichele||3B||9||7||3||2||2B, SB|
|Arizona State||Andrew||Aplin||OF||10||7||4||3||2 2B, HR, SB|
|Arkansas||Matt||Reynolds||3B/SS||10||5||8||3||2 2B, 2 SB|
|California||Tony||Renda||2B||11||4||6||0||2B, 4 SB|
|Central Florida||Ronnie||Richardson||OF||8||4||1||7||2B, 2 SB|
|Florida||Preston||Tucker||OF||11||3||6||4||2B, 2 HR|
|Florida State||James||Ramsey||OF||8||7||5||1||2B, HR, SB|
|Florida State||Justin||Gonzalez||SS||10||4||4||2||2B, SB|
|Georgia Southern||Victor||Roache||OF||10||4||4||3||2 HR|
|Georgia Tech||Kyle||Wren||OF||8||2||1||0||2B, SB|
|Indiana||Micah||Johnson||2B||13||3||3||2||2B, 3B, HR, SB|
|Jacksonville||Dan||Gulbransen||OF||10||1||2||0||2B, 3B, SB|
|Long Beach State||Matt||Duffy||SS||10||1||2||0|
|Louisiana State||Austin||Nola||SS||8||3||2||3||2B, SB|
|Miami||Peter||O'Brien||C||15||5||7||3||2B, 2 HR|
|Nevada||Carlos||Escobar||C||11||1||2||1||2B, 2 SB|
|North Carolina||Cody||Stubbs||1B||12||4||4||4||3 2B|
|Purdue||Kevin||Plawecki||C||13||3||5||2||2B, 3B, SB|
|Santa Clara||Pat||Stover||OF||16||4||5||2||2B, SB|
|St. John's||Jeremy||Baltz||OF||11||2||2||4||3B, HR|
|Stanford||Stephen||Piscotty||3B||14||6||4||8||2B, 2 HR|
|Texas A&M||Krey||Bratsen||OF||7||3||1||0||3 SB|
|Texas A&M||Tyler||Naquin||OF||11||8||6||2||2 2B, 3 SB|
|Texas Tech||Barrett||Barnes||OF/1B||16||4||7||4||2B, HR, 2 SB|
We're posting video of some of the more intriguing draft prospects in the 2012 class. The following is an index of all of the videos we have posted. Byron Buxton is currently rated as our No. 3 draft prospect. Dahl is No. 10. Trahan ranks No. 12 overall. Matt Smoral (No. 13) and Carlos Correa (No. 17) also crack the Top 20. Winker also ranks in the Top 50 (at spot No. 50). and Copeland comes in at No. 98.
|Byron Buxton, OF||Jesse Winker, OF||Alex Bregman, SS/C||Stryker Trahan, C|
|David Dahl, OF||Carlos Correa, SS||Matt Smoral, LHP||Kolby Copeland, OF|
Outfielder Byron Buxton is one of the most exciting prospects in the 2012 draft. A natural athlete who makes things look easy between the lines, Buxton stands 6-foot-2 and 170 pounds. His explosive athleticism and five-tool potential has already led some scouts to compare the Georgia commit to a hybrid of the Upton brothers. This video was provided by our scouting partner, Baseball Factory, and was shot at the 2011 Under Armour All-America Game.
COMPTON, Calif.—Sammy Ayala impressed scouts last June at a showcase event at San Diego State, but many scouts had to wait until this weekend to get another look at him. Ayala is not a darling of showcases or scout ball because he played defensive end for La Jolla Country Day's football team.
Ayala, a UC Santa Barbara recruit, burst back onto the baseball prospect landscape in a big way at Saturday's Southern California Invitational at the Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy. In his first at-bat, the lefthanded-hitting Ayala ripped a hard line drive to center field against lefthander Max Fried—a potential first-round pick. The ball got by the center fielder and reached the wall, allowing Ayala to motor around the bases for an inside-the-park home run.
Ayala followed with an opposite-field RBI single later in the game against righthander Andrew Potter (shown in the video below). And the 6-foot-2, 195-pound Ayala did a solid job receiving and blocking behind the plate. Scouts came away buzzing that Ayala's performance was one of the big stories of the event.
"He's a big, strong-bodied lefthanded guy with some power and some arm strength," said an American League area scout who was in Compton. "He held his own catching; he did enough back there to be in the conversation with the other catchers there. He showed no fear against those guys—he looked like he belonged. And he made hard contact."
Winker has been on the prospect radar for a while. He played travel ball with Dante Bichette Jr. and is high school teammates with another top prospect for the 2012 draft, righthander Walker Weickel at Olympia High in Orlando.
The Florida recruit is a polished lefthanded hitter with big loft power, but his bat will have to carry him, as he's likely a future left fielder or first baseman. He has some arm strength, but is already a below-average runner with a thick lower half.
Winker has great makeup, is a student of the game and has a brother, Joey, in pro ball with the Dodgers.
Bregman put his name on the map by leading the 2010 USA Baseball 16U team to a gold medal by hitting .564/.596/.846. He followed that up by returning for the 2011 18U gold medal run and hitting .378/.500/.459.
As a junior at Albuquerque Academy, Bregman also broke New Mexico's single-season home run record with 18 jacks last year. While he won't be a slugger as a pro, Bregman does pack impressive strength into his 5-foot-11 frame. He has exceptionally quick hands and an extremely efficient, compact swing. He has bat speed, knows how to get leverage and sprays the ball to all parts of the field. So, as New Mexico high schools transition to using wood bats for games this year, Bregman will have no trouble adjusting.
Defensively, Bregman will play anywhere on the diamond. He's fine at shortstop or second base, making all the plays and displaying solid-average arm strength, and he's going to spend about half of his time this spring behind the plate. In brief looks there this summer, Bregman looked comfortable. He moves well and showed strong hands, but needs to work on his throwing mechanics to second base. Bregman is a solid-average runner with good instincts on the bases.
Regardless of where he winds up defensively, coaches, teammates and fans will love Bregman—not only for his knack for putting the bat on the ball, but for his hard-nosed hustle, smart play and quiet swagger.
Here is some video of Louisiana prep catcher Stryker Trahan, who ranks No. 12 in Baseball America's Overall Top 100 list. We profiled Trahan at the Area Code Games this summer and this video is from USA Baseball's Tournament of Stars. Check out Baseball America's YouTube channel for several other videos of players.
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