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Urban Academy Gives Players A Chance

Lorraine Cwelich -Premium Content

It is very difficult to soar as a fledgling baseball player when you've never been taught that batting practice isn't synonymous with hacking, or when the coach at your inner city public high school doesn't respond to invitations from scouts to recommend players for tryouts. It is even harder when you're lucky enough to somehow land a scholarship to a prestigious prep school, only to find that every black player is benched, every single game, and only white players start. It is nearly impossible when showcases such as Perfect Game can cost up to $600—before travel expenses. But during the week of July 21, angels of both the guardian and Anaheim persuasion intervened and in the city of Compton, a handful of miles away from the rubble of South Central L.A., a minor miracle occurred.

High School | #2008#High Heat

Martin Two-Way Ability Earns Top Honor

Nathan Rode -

Ethan Martin started a March game as just another high school prospect who splits his time between the mound and a position. Lots of prospects do it, but most are firmly planted one way or the other by the time they reach their senior seasons. Martin was considered a third baseman who had plus bat speed with plus power potential, but some evaluators also liked him on the mound. By the end of that night, he was clearly a pitching prospect, and on his way to becoming the 2008 High School Player of the Year.<br/>

High School | #2008#Awards#Player Of The Year

Final High School Top 50

American Heritage high claims this year's national championship after their 3-A title. Joining the list of state champions are No. 3 Plano (Texas) West (Texas 5-A), No. 5 Brookwood (Georgia 5-A) and No. 6 Don Bosco (New Jersey, Non-Public A). Simi Valley (Calif.) High is the newest member to the top 25, winning the CIF Division I Southern Section title over No. 14 Wilson High (Long Beach, Calif.).

High School | #2008#Team Rankings

High School Team Of The Year

Nathan Rode -

With the attention that American Heritage High (Plantation, Fla.) has been given this season, readers can relate to the bludgeoning that the Patriots put on opponents this season. They stormed through the regular season, knocking off just about every 6-A Florida school they faced, capturing the school's first 3-A state baseball title as well as a national championship. The Patriots can add one more title to their resume: Baseball America Team of the Year.

High School | #2008#Awards#Team Of The Year

High School Top 25: May 27

Nathan Rode -

American Heritage High held onto the No. 1 spot after capturing the 3-A title in Florida. Knoxville's Farragut High catapulted to No. 13 after being unranked and taking out now No. 16 Bartlett High (Memphis, Tenn.) in the state finals. Other state champions include Bishop Gorman (Nevada 4-A), Owasso (Oklahoma 6-A) and Lake Brantley (Florida 6-A).

High School | #2008#Team Rankings

Plenty Of Questions

Nathan Rode -Premium Content

Anthony Hewitt may be the definition of an enigma, a term used loosely in baseball. The spectrum on his draft projection is so wide that some think he's a first-round supplemental pick, while others don't think he is even on the board.

High School | #2008#High Heat

High School Top 25: May 13

American Heritage High (Plantation, Fla.) held on to the top spot, but Sarasota (Fla.) High and Moody High (Corpus Christi, Texas) took the biggest falls from No. 2 and 5 respectively after they were bounced from the postseason without making it out of the regional tournaments. Sunrise Mountain High (Peoria, Ariz.) fell to Horizon High (Scottsdale, Ariz.) in the state championship, bumping them from No. 9 to 16. Barbe High (Lake Charles, La.) returns to the top 25 after winning the Louisiana 5-A state tournament.

High School | #2008#Team Rankings

Tropical Trip

Nathan Rode -

Once the high school season concludes toward the end of the spring, the summer showcase circuit will kick into gear. Underclassmen from all over the country will make their stops at camps in an effort to hone their skills and get noticed by college recruiters or professional scouts. However, some high school players will bypass the circuit and head to the beautiful beaches of the Dominican Republic to play on the diamonds and experience the culture of the baseball-rich Caribbean island.

High School | #2008#High Heat