Scouting Reports: Indiana




2007 MLB Draft Righthander Jarrod Parker won't become the highest-drafted player in Indiana history, but he won't fall far behind former No. 1 overall picks Andy Benes (1988) and Bryan Bullington (2002).

Parker headlines one of the best groups of high school pitching the state ever has produced.
THIS YEAR'S CROP
*****One for the books
****Banner year
***Solid, not spectacular
**Not up to par
*Nothing to see here
Indiana offers little else, however, as the college arms regressed and Southern Indiana second baseman Darin Mastroianni may be the lone position player selected in the first 15 rounds.

National Top 200 Prospects

1. Jarrod Parker, rhp, Norwell (Ind.) HS
2. Drew Storen, rhp, Brownsburg (Ind.) HS

Other Prospects Of Note

3. Brock Huntzinger, rhp, Pendleton Heights HS, Pendleton, Ind.
4. Sean Green, rhp, Chesterton (Ind.) HS
5. Joey Williamson, rhp, Notre Dame
6. Ryan Tatusko, rhp, Indiana State
7. Andy Groves, rhp, Purdue
8. Ben Norton, rhp, Evansville
9. Darin Mastroianni, 2b, Southern Indiana
10. Jon Clarence, lhp, Columbus (Ind.) North HS
11. Kyle Leiendecker, lhp, Homestead HS, Fort Wayne, Ind.
12. Dallas Cawiezell, rhp, Valparaiso
13. Jon Ringenberg, rhp, Blackhawk Christian HS, Fort Wayne, Ind.
14. Chad Dawson, rhp, Indiana State
15. Dan Kapala, rhp, Notre Dame
16. Josh Judy, rhp, Indiana Tech
17. Ty Adams, 1b, Brebeuf Jesuit HS, Indianapolis
18. Fred Jones, rhp, Evansville
19. T.J. Baumet, ss/3b, Brownsburg (Ind.) HS
20. Jeff Loveys, rhp, Ball State (CONTROL: Yankees)

Scouting Reports

Jarrod Parker1. Jarrod Parker, rhp (National rank: 10)
School: Norwell (Ind.) HS. Class: Sr.
B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 175. Birthdate: 11/24/88.
Scouting Report: Parker pitched for Team USA's junior national squad that won a silver medal in the World Junior Championship in Cuba last September. He has blown away scouts and hitters all spring, warming up for his initial start at 93-94 mph and hitting 97 with his first official pitch of the season. He touched 98 in that game and has continued to do so since, often working at 95-96. Just 6-foot-2 and 175 pounds, Parker generates his exceptional velocity with an unbelievably quick arm. One scouting director says he has the best arm action of any high school pitcher in the draft, and he has drawn comparisons to a righthanded version of Scott Kazmir and to Tim Lincecum. Parker doesn't have Lincecum's untouchable curveball, but he does have a power curve with good depth and has shown a mid-80s slider. He hasn't needed it much against inferior high school competition, but Parker also has flashed an average to plus changeup. He didn't allow a run until his sixth start or an earned run until his seventh. A Georgia Tech recruit, he should go in the first half of the first round, perhaps to the Braves at No. 14.

2. Drew Storen, rhp (National rank: 180)
School: Brownsburg (Ind.) HS. Class: Sr.
B-T: B-R. Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 170. Birthdate: 8/1/87.
Scouting Report: One of the most polished high school pitchers in the draft, Storen also is one of the oldest, as he'll turn 20 in August. He can't match the upper-90s velocity of fellow Indiana high school pitcher Jarrod Parker, a certain first-rounder, but on his good days Storen will show livelier stuff. He gets good sink on an 87-91 mph fastball and owns a true slider. He also has a solid changeup and shows a feel for changing speeds and locating his pitches. He's not big at 6-foot-1, but he could add a considerable amount of strength because he carries just 170 pounds. Storen's delivery features a lot of twisting, which one scout likened to Luis Tiant's. Some scouts don't like his mechanics, but they give him deception and don't prevent him from throwing strikes. The son of XM radio baseball broadcaster Mark Patrick, Storen is expected to be a tough sign because he has committed to Stanford.

Huntzinger Impresses After Late Start

As the draft approached, righthander Brock Huntzinger's draft stock was rising. Pendleton Heights didn't begin its season until mid-April, and Huntzinger quickly impressed scouts with his 6-foot-3, 210-pound frame, a high 80s fastball that tops out at 92 mph and a good slider. He's athletic and has fair command, and he's still a work in progress. He could go as high as the third to fifth round, which should be enough to lure him away from a commitment to Indiana.

Righthander Sean Green generated a lot of buzz early in the season, though it started to cool when he didn't perform as well in front of crosscheckers as he did in front of area scouts. At his best, he worked at 88-92 mph for three to four innings and showed a promising slider. Later in the spring, he topped out at 89 and his breaking ball was mediocre. His 6-foot-6, 190-pound frame is projectable, but he may not go high enough to divert him from Jacksonville.

There's no consensus on the best college pitching prospect in the state, and the leading candidates weren't even supposed to be the best pitching prospects on their team. Righthander Joey Williamson gets the nod after cutting his ERA to 2.81 this year, down from 6.44 in his first two seasons. He's probably limited to being a reliever in pro ball, but he holds the velocity on his 89-92 mph fastball and maintains a sharp slider out of the bullpen. He looks like an eighth- to 10th-rounder. Fellow Notre Dame righty Dan Kapala hit 95 mph in the Cape Cod League in 2005, but he tore his labrum in the final start that summer and isn't all the way back yet. He threw in the high 80s from a lower arm slot this year.

Righthander Ryan Tatusko ranked ahead of Williamson before he faded down the stretch. A redshirt junior who sat out 1994 after having Tommy John surgery as a high school senior, Tatusko will flash a 94 mph fastball and a good slider. He also has a lean pitcher's build at 6-foot-6 and 195 pounds. But his mechanics and command are spotty, and he was sitting at 90 mph with a lackluster slider by the end of the season.

Still, he finished stronger than Indiana State teammate Chad Dawson. A similarly built righthander, Dawson starred in the Northwoods League last summer and was lights out in a mid-March outing against Miami (Ohio). But since then, his fastball dropped from 91-94 mph to 84 and his slider also went bad.

Righthander Ben Norton will be a solid senior sign after a pair of nine-win seasons at Evansville. Norton, who began his college career at Wabash Valley (Ill.) Community College, commands a lively 88-91 mph fastball and a solid slider. He can throw strikes with four pitches and competes. Fred Jones has the best pure stuff among the Purple Aces' draft-eligible pitchers, but he hasn't been the same since coming down with biceps tendinitis in 2006. He'll still flash a plus fastball and slider, just not as often, and pitched his way out of Evansville's rotation.

Righthander Andy Groves threw 86-88 mph as an undrafted junior last year. When there were reports he had jumped to 93-94 mph against Auburn in March, scouts scrambled to see him. That was easier said than done, as Groves pitched just 26 innings out of the Purdue bullpen. He got hit to the tune of a 5.54 ERA and showed just an OK fastball and slurve, so scouts still aren't sure what to make of him. Groves pitched for the National Baseball Congress World Series champion Santa Barbara Foresters last summer, and he returned to them as a starter while awaiting the draft.

Second baseman Darin Mastroianni hit .409 and topped NCAA Division II with 64 steals in 67 attempts, leading Southern Indiana to its first-ever D-II College World Series berth. Mastroianni, who has plus speed, is the best position prospect in the state but probably won't go in the first 10 rounds. He doesn't have the arm for shortstop, though he might be able to handle center field as a pro. He's a transfer from Winthrop, where he redshirted in 2004 and appeared in just five games in 2005.

Lefthander Jon Clarence had a chance to go in the first 10 rounds until he came down with shoulder tenderness. He threw in the upper 80s and showed a nifty slurve early in the spring, but was down to 83-87 mph by the end of the season. Whichever team selects him likely will monitor his health and progress over the summer before deciding whether to try to sign him away from Louisville.

Scouts had high hopes for a pair of Ball State righthanders, but they didn't materialize. Jeff Loveys has optimal pro size at 6-foot-7 and 230 pounds, and he showed a 90-96 mph fastball last summer in the Northwoods League. But he sat out 2005 (because he transferred within the Mid-American Conference from Buffalo) and 2006 (academic ineligibility). The Yankees drafted him anyway last June in the 48th round. Loveys worked just 11 innings this spring and posted a 10.12 ERA because he lacked command and control. He threw 92-93 mph, so someone may take a late-round flier on him.

Luke Behning led the Great Lakes League with a 0.86 ERA in 2005, but he missed all of 2006 after shoulder surgery and pitched just 11 innings for Ball State in 2007 because he's still not 100 percent. He's 6-foot-6 and 225 pounds, and he had a 90-92 mph fastball before he got hurt. He's still not 100 percent.

Notre Dame's Sean Gaston has had two straight productive summers in the Cape Cod League. As a lefthanded-hitting catcher with a decent bat and solid defensive skills, he would have been a nice senior sign. But he missed the entire season after having surgery to repair his labrum in February.