The next hurler in the strong lineage of tall, projectable pitchers from the state of Colorado, lefthander David Peterson, fractured his right fibula over the weekend and had surgery Wednesday. Peterson is expected to miss seven to 10 weeks following the surgery, and it is unlikely he will pitch in game action before the draft.
"The feedback from the surgeon was actually quite a bit better than what we actually we got Monday," said Peterson's mother, Shannon Dolce. "They took another look at the X-rays and the break is very clean. Based on what the doctor is saying it is not an impossibility for him to return by the end of the season if his team is able to advance deep into the postseason."
An Under Armour and Perfect Game All-American, Peterson broke his fibula on a non-contact layup attempt on the basketball court.
"On a baseball team retreat I went up for an easy layup just like I would do every time I play basketball," Peterson said. "I pushed off my foot and went up and it snapped. It was something the doctors said could have happened at practice running the bases, jumping for a line drive or fly ball."
As a general rule, springtime injuries leading up to the draft increase the likelihood of a player reaching campus. Peterson, one of the top high school lefthanders in the country and the top prospect in the state of Colorado, is committed to Oregon.
The 6-foot-6, 205-pound Peterson has a large frame with long extremities and a projectable body built to carry additional strength gains. With loose arm action from a three-quarters slot, Peterson hides the ball well and produces above-average fastball movement with sink and heavy arm-side run into lefthanded hitters. Peterson, whose arsenal shows the ability to induce ground balls consistently, touched 93 mph this fall and sat in the high 80s over extended innings on the showcase circuit.
His high-70s changeup showed the makings of an above-average offering at its best. Peterson's mid-to-high-70s breaking ball with sweeping action lags behind his changeup.
Peterson's high school, Regis Jesuit in Denver, is slated to open its season March 13 and will participate in the National High School Invitational in Cary, N.C., at the end of the March.