Hosmer Adds To Accolades

JUPITER, Fla.–One of amateur baseball’s most talked about players over the past few years has been Eric Hosmer, a sweet-swinging first baseman from South Florida.

His senior year is upon him, and he continued to build on his reputation by winning the MVP of the World Wood Bat Association fall championship today while helping his Braves Scout travel team to the title of the final major high school scouting event of the calendar year.

Hosmer had a hit and an RBI in three at-bats as he and a hand-picked collection of the country’s best high school seniors held off an Orlando-based travel team 4-3 today at Roger Dean Stadium. The event featured 80 teams from the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. One hundred and seventy-three games were played in almost exactly 96 hours at the spring training facility of the Cardinals and Marlins.

While Hosmer doesn’t depart as the consensus top high school prospect in the ’08 prep draft class–that distinction still belongs to suburban Atlanta shortstop Tim Beckham, Missouri righthander Tim Melville or perhaps Riverside, Calif., catcher Kyle Skipworth–his track record and hitting ability are remarkable.

Hosmer has been the starting first baseman for American Heritage High in Plantation since his freshman year, racking up 23 career home runs in that span. As a junior, he batted just .372 with four home runs, but he had 14 doubles, 56 RBIs, 31 walks, 21 strikeouts and a .489 on-base percentage. He hit .548-10-42 as a sophomore.

In Jupiter, he was 10-for-21 with a home run and nine RBIs.

Orlando Scorpions righthander Anthony Figliola (Winter Springs, Fla., High) and East Cobb (Ga.) Astros lefty Brett DeVall shared pitcher of the tournament honors. Both pitchers could be top-five round draft picks in June, with DeVall possibly going in the top 50 picks.