College Podcast: Covering Signing Deadline, Transfer Portal
On this episode of the Baseball America College Podcast, presented by Rapsodo, Teddy Cahill and Joe Healy cover the MLB Draft signing deadline and the activity in the transfer portal, both events that will have bearing on what rosters look like for the 2022 season.
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The biggest news to come out of the signing deadline is that Vanderbilt righthander and 10th overall pick Kumar Rocker failed to come to terms with the Mets before the deadline after the team reportedly expressed concern with something that popped up during Rocker's medical evaluation. Rocker will not return to Vanderbilt next season, however, even though he has the option to do so.
In moves that may actually affect college rosters next season, Florida outfielder Jud Fabian and Oklahoma State commitment Alex Ulloa didn't sign with the Red Sox and Astros, respectively. Fabian will return to Florida, where he will be a huge piece of the Gators lineup once again on a team that will be hungry to bounce back after an uninspired postseason finish.
Getting Ulloa to campus would be huge for an Oklahoma State team that also got top recruit Roc Riggio to Stillwater, but when it comes to highly-regarded prospects who might have expected to sign out of high school, you also can't count out a detour to junior college instead.
When it comes to the transfer portal, it has been an active offseason, but perhaps not as active as one might think given that all players can now freely transfer and play right away. Louisiana State and Texas A&M have been among the two most active teams this offseason. The Tigers pulled in an All-American in Jacob Berry, plus filled needs with former Samford catcher Tyler McManus and hard-throwing righthander Eric Reyzelman from San Francisco. Texas A&M has almost completely remade its roster with transfers, led by former Arizona State first baseman Jack Moss and former Texas Tech starting pitcher Micah Dallas.
Other programs that brought in large transfer classes include Kentucky and Oklahoma State, and North Carolina State has come on strong lately with a few key additions. Under-the-radar players who could have a big impact next season are righthander Carter Rustad going from San Diego to Missouri, infielder Tyler Corbitt going from The Citadel to Clemson, infielder R.J. Yeager leaving Mercer to head to Mississippi State and pitcher Trevin Michael going from Lamar to Oklahoma. As always, it's prudent to take a wait and see approach with incoming transfers, but it appears that several teams have reshaped their outlook on the fly thanks to aggressiveness in the portal.