Cal Ripken Collegiate League Top 10 Prospects
The Bethesda Big Train scored three runs in the third inning and went on to beat the Baltimore Redbirds, 8-4, and claim the Cal Ripken League championship for the second straight year. Lefthander Joe Mantiply (Virginia Tech) got the win for the Big Train, going six innings and striking out five while giving up two earned runs. Mason Morioka (San Francisco) went 2-for-4 with two RBIs in the championship game, capping a dominant postseason that earned him league championship series MVP honors.
A barnstorming team of Ripken League players traveled to Puerto Rico after the playoffs to face teams from Caguas, Cidra, and Guaynabo in a three-game series. Led by Cody Allen (High Point), Frank Florio (Tulane), Matt Marquis (Maryland), and Alex Frederick (UNC Greensboro), the Ripken Leaguers posted two wins and a draw in three games. Ripken League pitchers overmatched many of the Puerto Rican amateurs, tallying 49 strikeouts in 28 innings, led by Allen's 10 whiffs in four innings against Caguas.
Meanwhile, Youse's Orioles won their 27th AAABA national championship with a 4-0 win over Johnstown Delweld in Johnstown, Pa.
1. Glynn Davis, of/1b, Youse's Orioles (SIGNED: Orioles)
Davis went undrafted after his sophomore year at Catonsville (Md.) CC, but he signed with the Orioles after going 16-for-37 (.432) with two homers in a brief Ripken League stint. Davis' best tool is his speed—he has been clocked between 6.3 and 6.4 seconds in the 60-yard dash, making him a true 80 runner on the 20-80 scale. He has a good feel for using his speed on the basepaths, helping him go 6-for-6 in stolen base attempts this summer. He played shortstop this spring at Catonsville but will move to center field in pro ball. He shows average arm strength from the outfield. Davis' lean, 6-foot-2, 170-pound frame has projection, and his quick hands generate plus bat speed. The ball jumps off his bat when he connects from an upright stance, producing hard line drives to the gaps and occasional loft power. He likes the ball up in the zone and keeps his hands inside the ball well. His above-average hand-eye coordination should help him improve his pitch recognition as he sees more offspeed stuff in pro ball.
2. Blake Hauser, rhp, Youse's Orioles (So., Virginia Commonwealth)
The lean, loose, 6-foot-2, 175-pound Hauser is a poster-child for a projection righthander. He throws a lively 90-94 mph fastball from a high three-quarters slot and holds his plus velocity deep into games. He adds a developing 81-84 changeup and a 72-75 downer curve. Hauser has a very quick arm, but his pitches have below-average depth and movement. He tends to drift forward in his delivery and needs a more consistent arm slot. He also must stay on top of his pitches more consistently. Hauser saw limited league action because of an injury that ended his summer early, but he went 1-0, 0.53 with 14 strikeouts and nine walks in 17 innings. He was drafted in the 25th round by the Indians out of high school in 2009, when he was regarded as the top draft-eligible prospect in the state of Virginia.
3. Keenan Kish, rhp, Youse's Orioles (Fr., Florida)
The No. 5 prospect in a banner Pennsylvania draft class this spring, Kish was regarded as a fifth- to seventh-round talent by scouts, but he slipped to the Yankees in the 34th round because of his strong commitment to Florida. He held his own against older competition this summer, going 3-1, 3.86 with 16 strikeouts and 10 walks in 23 innings for Youse's Orioles. This summer, Kish showed two pitches with average velocity: an 88-91 mph fastball and a 74-75 curveball. He also mixed in a 78-80 mph changeup on occasion. Kish has a loose arm action and a projectable 6-foot-3, 190-pound frame. His mechanics are advanced for his age, and he repeats his mid-three-quarters arm slot and his delivery well. He has an advanced feel for pitching but did not show great control this summer. His size, arm action and delivery suggest Kish will add velocity as he matures, and he could develop into a premium prospect in three years at Florida.
4. Josh Conway, rhp/if, Baltimore (So., Coastal Carolina)
A 42nd-round pick by the Braves out of high school in 2009, Conway went 2-0, 3.30 in 46 innings of mostly relief as a freshman at Coastal Carolina, then went 0-2, 2.08 with 14 strikeouts and nine walks in 17 innings this summer. Conway is an athletic two-way player, and his pitching skills are ahead of his position-player skills. He features an average 89-91 mph fastball, and despite his smallish frame (6-foot-1, 165 pounds), he still sits around 87-89 late in games. Conway has a quick delivery, a loose arm action and a high three-quarters slot. He attacked righthanded hitters with a good 80-83 mph slider with late break away from the zone, and he made progress with his changeup as the summer progressed. He is very competitive and figures to add some velocity as his body matures. At the plate, Conway flashes some pop but has a tendency to chase offspeed stuff. He's a good runner with solid range in the infield, where his arm plays well.
5. Cody Allen, rhp, Bethesda (Jr., High Point)
Allen was drafted by the Indians in the 16th round after his sophomore year at St. Petersburg (Fla.) JC this spring, but he did not sign and will spend his junior year at High Point. Allen flashes an average to plus 90-93 mph fastball and 76-78 curve from a mid-three-quarters delivery. He also shows an occasional two-seam fastball at 84-86 and a changeup at 80-82. Allen has a quick arm and pounds both sides of the plate with his heavy fastball. While his arm is quick over the top, his pitches tend to flatten out, showing a need to pitch more on top than on the side of the ball.
6. Ben Carhart, rhp/3b, Youse's Orioles (Jr., Stetson)
A 19th-round pick by the Dodgers out of Palm Beach (Fla.) CC this June, Carhart dominated in the Ripken League this summer, going 3-0, 0.00 with 15 strikeouts and five walks in 18 innings. A two-way player, he also hit .308/.400/.429 with two homers and 28 RBIs and won league MVP honors. He did not sign before the mid-August deadline and will play at Stetson in 2011. Carhart pitched only in relief this summer, showing an average fastball with sink and arm-side run that he spots on either side of the plate. His 75-77 curve has late break—often out of the strike zone to righthanded hitters. On offense, he has an advanced hitting approach, he keeps his hands back and can power the ball into the gaps. His pitch recognition is above-average, but his speed is well below-average. Undersized at 5-foot-10, 190 pounds, Carhart projects best as a middle reliever at the next level.
7. Johnny Bladel, of, Herndon (So., James Madison)
A line-drive, gap-power hitter, Bladel hit .317/.385/.439 this summer and stole a league-best 29 bases in 32 tries. He rarely swings at bad pitches (18 strikeouts and 15 walks), making opposing pitchers run up their pitch counts. A 6-foot, 180-pound righthanded hitter, Bladel's offensive tools aren't flashy (other than his plus-plus speed), and he projects as a fourth outfielder at the next level. He is a good defender with a strong, accurate arm.
8. Patrick Scoggin, rhp, Baltimore (So., Virginia Tech)
At 6-foot-4, 270 pounds, Scoggin is a major mound presence. He's also a major projection, showing an average fastball at 87-91 that touches 92 at times. He features a two-seam fastball with occasional sink to lefthanded hitters and movement away from righties. He shows an 80-82 changeup that's under-developed and a soft 77-80 curve. After posting a 9.00 ERA and a 2.21 WHIP as a freshman this spring, Scoggin improved with work this summer, going 2-0, 1.97 with 34 strikeouts and 14 walks in 32 innings.
9. Rand Ravnaas, of, Alexandria (Jr., Georgetown)
Ravnaas, a lefthanded hitter, had a breakout spring, hitting .347/.439/.626 with 11 homers for Georgetown, and kept on hitting this summer, finishing at .313/.359/.504 with three homers and 26 RBIs in 131 at-bats. He also stole 15 bases in 17 tries, showing the ability to use his solid-average speed very well on the basepaths. His speed plays in the outfield as well, as he gets good reads off the bat and has an average arm. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Ravnaas has gap power and a quick bat but is a free-swinger and must refine his offensive approach.
10. Bryan Hamilton, rhp, Bethesda (Sr., Charlotte)
After having Tommy John surgery and redshirting in 2009, Hamilton bounced back very strong as a fourth-year junior this spring, going 4-0, 2.01 with 40 strikeouts and five walks in 31 innings of relief. He was just as dominant this summer, going 2-1, 0.42 with 31 strikeouts and 11 walks in 22 innings. Hamilton attacks hitters with a plus fastball in the 89-94 range. His second pitch is an 11-to-5 curveball at 75-78 mph. His delivery turned off some scouts: He forms a large circle with his hands from the stretch position, then lifts his left leg inside the circle, pushes forward from the rubber, breaks his hands and delivers from a mid-three-quarters slot. It's an unconventional motion, but it gets results.