State Report: Pacific Rim
Hawaii has a few prospects; Alaska none
See also: Baseball America's Complete 2010 Draft Map
|THIS YEAR'S CROP
||One for the books
||Solid, not spectacular
||Not up to par
||Nothing to see here
Hawaii rarely produces Top 200-caliber players. The state hasn't had one since 2006, when the Indians selected lefthander Steven Wright in the second round, but could have another this year. The addition of a couple of interesting high school players makes it a solid year for the islands. As usual, there aren't any players in Alaska.
|NATIONAL TOP 200 PROSPECTS
1. Josh Slaats, rhp, Hawaii (National Rank: 78)
2. Keanu Carmichael, c, Mililani HS
3. Chace Numata, rhp/ss, Pearl City HS
4. Sam Spangler, lhp, Hawaii
5. David Freitas, c, Hawaii
6. Kaiana Eldredge, c, Punahou HS, Honolulu
Josh Slaats, rhp
Slaats came to Hawaii via California High in San Ramon, Calif. He started for the Rainbows his freshman year, but was ineffective and moved to a relief role in 2009 after coming out of the bullpen for Wareham in the Cape Cod League the previous summer. Slaats returned to the Cape last summer and dominated (2-0, 0.95) and reclaimed a spot in Hawaii's weekend rotation, although he didn't become their Friday night guy until midway through this year and missed a start in March with some elbow tenderness. Slaats sits 90-93 mph with his fastball, holding it deep into games, and has even touched 95. Slaats throws a disappearing slider with sharp, two-plane break. His changeup is still coming along but has shown flashes of being a good pitch. Slaats has a physical presence on the mound at 6-foot-5 and 230 pounds. He repeats his delivery well, but has a tendency to open his hips a little early and fall off to the first-base side. As a pitcher from Hawaii, Slaats final start of the regular season at San Jose State and in the Western Athletic Conference tournament in Mesa, Ariz. will be important, as it will give more scouts a chance to see him.
Hawaii High Schools Produce A Few Prospects
—whose first name is Christian—is the top high school prospect in the state. An athletic catcher, Carmichael is a agile defender with quick feet and a strong, accurate arm. He has a line drive stroke, but defense is his calling card. He did not play this spring after switching from Kamehameha High to Mililani High in February because of transfer rules. Carmichael is committed to Hawaii, but a team that likes his defensive ability and has done its homework could draft him high enough to sign him away from that commitment.
is a slender, athletic 6 feet and 165 pounds. He's a switch-hitting shortstop and teams have flirted with the idea of trying him out behind the plate. He could certainly play both ways if he winds up at Central Arizona JC, but he's a better pro prospect on the mound, where he has been clocked as high as 94 mph as his team's closer. He sits more in the 89-91 mph range, with a curveball that falls off the table.
is another athletic catcher. This is his first year playing behind the plate, but he made the transition nicely because of his athleticism and arm strength. Before catching, he was a shortstop and a pitcher, sitting at 86-88 mph off the mound and touching 90. He's an average runner and a gap-to-gap hitter who is committed to Kansas.
The other two players likely to be drafted out of the University of Hawaii are lefthander Sam Spangler
who has pitched at 86-89 mph most of the year, and catcher David
. Spangler is in his first year starting and could get back up to 92
mph if a team sticks him in the bullpen. He has shown a much
better feel this season for his secondary pitches, a curveball and a changeup. Freitas is 6-foot-3 and 225 pounds and came to
Hawaii from Consumnes River (Calif.) CC. He might get a shot late in
the draft, but teams will likely wait on him as a senior sign.