See Also: Byron Buxton scouting report
See Also: Byron Buxton video from Under Armour game
Baseball America headed south this weekend to check out a couple games from outfielder Byron Buxton and the Appling County High (Baxley, Ga.) Pirates. Over the two games against Long County High (Ludowici, Ga.) and Calvary Day School (Savannah, Ga.), Buxton went 4-for-6 with two doubles and two walks. He showed off his well above-average speed on the bases and in the outfield, where he ran down a ball easily in the left-center gap.
Of all those things—getting a hit, stealing a base, or making a good defensive play—there's one Buxton likes better than the other two.
"Running a ball down," Buxton said. "Because you're keeping somebody else from getting on base."
Buxton—"Buck" to most of the fans in the stands, except his grandma, who has always called him "Big Boy"—is the type of athlete who makes everything look easy. He doesn't get overanxious at the plate, remaining patient and waiting for his pitch. He's a smooth, gliding runner and he got on the mound to close out the first game and ran his fastball up to 94 mph.
On top of all that, he handles everything that comes with being the top prospect in the country—the scrutiny from other teams, as well as the fan and media attention—with a relaxed grace.
Buxton, a Georgia recruit, isn't likely to wind up on campus because he projects to be picked in the first five picks of the draft. That was evident on Saturday by the teams in attendance to scout the tooled-up outfielder. The Astros (picking first), Mariners (3rd), Orioles (4th) and Pirates (8th) all had scouts at the game to see Buxton play.
With four more stolen bases over the two games, Buxton is now 21-for-21 in steals on the season. He hasn't stolen home this year yet, but he did do it once last year and always has the green light—both at the plate and on the bases.
"I tell him, if he gets a good read, he's on his own," Appling County High head coach Jeremy Smith said.
Even with all the draft hype and attention this year, Buxton's goal remains simple.
"I want to lead us to the state championships, that's it," Buxton said.
Below is video of Buxton from April 13 & 14.
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