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2017 Prep Baseball Update #4: Player of the Year Lists

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Yankees signee and Riverdale Baptist alum Harold Cortijo is the inarguable player of the year in the area for 2017. Photo via WP

Yankees signee and Riverdale Baptist alum Harold Cortijo is the inarguable player of the year in the area for 2017. Photo via WP

Final HS Post of the 2017 year.

Here’s the rough schedule of posting and what we’ll cover:

We have finally passed all the “All-Everything” lists start getting published.  Here’s my tracker of them.  I try to note the player of the year in each case.  If i’m missing something, please let me know.  I’ve put results in red that I either cannot find or are behind a paywall or seem to have been discontinued.  I realize this is kind of anti-climactic at this point; lots of these players mentioned were drafted weeks ago and may already be playing.  But it takes some of these orgs til late June/early July to announce.


Individual Player Accolades Announced

In addition to being playoff-baseball time, this is also the time of the year that we start to see player awards.  I’ll put these in as they publish, but we won’t expect most of these until the end of June.

  • Gatorade announced their player of the year awards on 5/29/17:
    • MarylandHarold Cortijo, RHP/OF from Riverdale Baptist.  Committed to play at Seminole State, drafted in the 14th round by the New York Yankees; signed on 6/18/17.
    • Washington DCJack Roberts, RHP/SS from St. Johns.  Committed to play at Elon.  Undrafted.
    • VirginiaAndrew Abbott, LHP from Halifax County HS.  Committed to play for UVA.  Drafted in 36th round by the New York Yankees; likely to go to school.
  • Louisville Slugger All-Americans: not sure if being named any longer.
  • National High School Coaches Association (NHSCA) All Mid Atlantic Region: can’t find a link but has apparently been named as per MaxPreps bios on Cortijo and Abbott.
  • MaxPreps High School All-Americans; named 7/3/17.  Jordon Adell  National player of the year.  Cortijo, Abbott
  • Baseball America High School All-Americans: named 6/27/17.  Jordon Adell  National player of the year.   No DC/MD/VA players on any of the 1st, 2nd or 3rd team this year.
  • USA Today/American Family All-USA teams.  named 6/13/17.   Jordon Adell  National player of the year.   Harold Cortijo named to 3rd team All-USA.
  • American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA)/Rawlings High School All Americans: named 6/22/17.  MacKenzie Gore POTY.  Danny Hosley from Langley and Kody Milton from Severna Park named to 3rd team.
  • Collegiate Baseball High School All-Americans: named 6/16/17: Tanner Burns is POTY.  Jose RiveraHarold Cortijo, and  Andrew Abbott named.
  • Perfectgame.org/Rawlings All-AmericansJordon Adell and MacKenzie Gore were their National Player and Pitcher of the year (both were upper 1st round picks)
    • Maryland: Harold Cortijo
    • Washington DC: none named.
    • Virginia:  Andrew Abbott
  • Washington Post All-Met teams: Announced 6/9/17.   Harold Cortijo, RHP/OF from Riverdale Baptist is All Met player of the year.
  • The Baltimore Sun’s All-Metro Team: Announced 6/25/17.  Kody Milton a Jr. 3B from Severna Park, is POTY.  Early commit to UMaryland.
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch All-Metro Team: announced 6/27/17. Evan Justice– Collegiate School, a LHP from Richmond committed to NC State.
  • Virginian Pilot All-Tidewater team:  Hunter Gregory, DH/RHP from Hickory is the POTY.  Committed to ODU.
  • Virginia All 6-A North Regional team: Langley’s Danny Hosley is player of the year (no PG profile/unknown college commit).  Madison’s Jake Nielsen pitcher of the year (a Junior w/o a current college commitment).
  • Virginia All 6-A South Regional teamAustin Cabone from Cox and Hunter Vay  a Catcher from Thomas Vale co-players of the year.   Cabone is commited to George Mason, Vay to Virginia Commonwealth/VCU.
  • Virginia All 5-A North Regional team: Andrew Abbott, LHP from Halifax County HS player of the year.
  • Virginia All 5-A South Regional team: certainly named, cannot find link.
  • Virginia All 4A West Regional teamWill Merriken OF from Kettle Run player of the year.  Committed to Roanoke College.
  • Virginia All 3A East Regional teamDaniel Brooks SS from Spotsylvania player of the year.   Committed to GMU.
  • Other Virginia All-Regional teams: pending/unknown;
  • Northern Virginia All-District teams: Available at this link at Novabaseballmagazine.com, thanks to Joey Kamide for all his hard work.
  • NovaBaseballMagazine Nova-NINE: Michael Ludowig is the Northern Virginia player of the year; Wake Forest commit.
  • PrepBaseballReport All Maryland TeamHarold Cortijo, RHP/OF from Riverdale Baptist is POTY.
  • PrepBaseballReport All Virginia/DC Team:  Andrew Abbott, LHP from Halifax County HS is POTY.
  • VHSL All-State Teams:
    • 6-A: Austin Cabone RHP from Cox is player of the year.  GMU commit.
    • 5-AAndrew Abbott, LHP from Halifax County HS is Player of the Year, UVA commit.
    • 4-A: Will Merriken OF from Kettle Run is POTY.  Roanoke College
    • 3-AJustin Showalter, RHP from Turner Ashby, is POTY.  JMU commit.
    • 2-AHunter Brown OF from John Battle HS is POTY.  ? commit.
    • 1-AAustin Smallwood, RHP from Eastside HS is POTY.  ? commit
  • VISAA’s All-State teams:
    • Division I All State Team with several Paul VI and Flint Hill players.  Player of the Year: Evan Justice– Collegiate School, a LHP from Richmond committed to NC State.
    • Division II All State Team.  Player of the year: Ethan Murray– Miller School, a Junior SS/RHP who sports a 4.0 and is an early commit to Duke.
    • Division III All State Team.   Player of the Year: Carter Davis– Blessed Sacrament-Huguenot, a C from Powhattan committed to St. Andrews Presbyterian College.
  • Maryland All-MIAA All-State teamsbehind a paywall that i’m tired of fighting :-)
    • MIAA A division: behind a paywall
    • MIAA B division: behind a paywall
    • MIAA C division: behind a paywall
  • Anne-Arundel County All-Baseball teamKody Milton a Jr. 3B from Severna Park, is POTY.  Early commit to UMaryland
  • All Baltimore-City 2017 Baseball teambehind a paywall
  • All WCAC 2017Jack Roberts, RHP/SS from St. Johns player of the year.
  • All MAC 2017: no POTY named; if you asked me I’d probably go Carter Bosch, P/SS from the Potomac School, who was All-Met 1st team as a junior.
  • All IAC 2017Randy Bednar, SS from Landon is IAC POTY.  Committed to UMaryland.

If I missed an award, or if you know of something I don’t, don’t hesitate to post.

Prep Baseball Update #2 2017: Maryland State Champs, Virginia Regional Champs crowned

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Update #2 for DC/MD/VA Prep baseball for 2017.

Here’s the rough schedule of posting and what we’ll cover:

  • #1: DC/MD/VA District High School Tournament Report: post-season kickoff.  Covers: MD regionals, VA district brackets, Private school tourney updates.  Usually publishes the week before Memorial day tournament finals.
  • #2: Maryland State Champs, Northern VA Regional Champs crowned (this post).  Covers: MD state finals, VA regionals finals.  Usually publishes first week of June.
    #3: Virginia State Champions crowned.  Covers: VA state tourneys, recaps MD, DC, Private School results.  Publishes mid-June once the Va state tourney wraps up.
  • #4: Players of the Year/All-State lists and final rankings; publishes early July once all the all-state lists are published.

Lets see where we stand now with Virginia having completed their regional tournaments and setup state semi finals’ matchups.

Text in Red are pending results, which we’ll pick up in the next post in this series.

All Virginia regional finals were played on 6/2/17; here’s the scoreboard with all results.  Winner highlighted in bold red.


Virginia

Here are the Virginia Conference champions, regular season and tournament.  All these playoff brackets, if they exist, are at this link at VHSL.  I won’t re-link all the playoff brackets per district/region below.

6-A North Regional  Conference Tournament Results

  • 6-A Conference 5/ConcordeOakton beat Westfield
  • 6-A Conference 6/Liberty: Madison squeaked by Langley
  • 6-A Conference 7/Potomac: West Springfield blanked South County
  • 6-A Conference 8/ Cedar Run: Patriot cruised to the district title over Osborne Park

Regional Tournament Results: The four expected #1 seeds advanced easily in the first round of the Regional tournament; Oakton, Madison, West Springfield and Patriot.  In the regional quarters, all four #1 seeds advanced again; Madison advanced easily over Lake Braddock 6-0, Oakton advanced over Battlefield 5-3, West Springfield easily handled Westfield 9-2, and Patriot downed Robinson 1-0 on a walk-off homer.   The regional semi-finals on 5/30/17 were both interrupted by a massive storm that moved through and were completed on 5/31/17.  In those regional semis, Oakton walked-off with a Sac Fly in the bottom of the 7th to top Madison 3-2 while Patriot held off West Springfield 4-3 to punch their tickets to the State tourney.  The Madison/Oakton game was a rematch of an earlier game this season, easily won by Madison, so that result was surprising.  Patriot over West Springfield was more expected, given Patriot’s traditional strength.

Regional Final: Oakton got a n extra-innings, 2-run walk-off homer  from Junior Eric Lingenbach to take the 6A regional title from Patriot 3-2.

 


6-A South Region: mostly covering Richmond, Roanoke and Virginia Beach area.  But there are just enough schools in Woodbridge proper to form a 6-A conference closer to DC with teams that are typically considered for All-Met rankings.   Unlike 6A-North, just the top two teams from each district make the Regional tournament.  Thus, the district tournaments here are lagging the district tournaments for the North region, which finished before theirs even began.

VHSL bracket link here.  Direct link to Tide-water area tourney schedules at Pilot Online.    Direct link to Richmond area tourney schedules at the Times-Dispatch.

  • 6-A Conference 1/Coastal: Cox defeated Kellam in a battle of Va Beach heavy-weights.
  • 6-A Conference 2/Monitor Merrimac: Western Branch beat Oscar Smith in an upset-filled district tourney where top-ranked Granby and Woodside were upset early.
  • 6-A Conference 3: Manchester d Thomas Dale in a district tourney that went chalk.
  • 6-A Conference 4Woodbridge d Colonial Forge 12-11 in a barn burner.

Regional Results: all four district champs won their quarter final matchups, with Cox having the easiest time of it.   In the Semis, Cox beat Manchester 3-2 and Western Branch handled Woodbridge 5-3. 

Region Final:  Cox rallies to defeat Western Branch 4-3.


5-A North Region:

Conference winners:

  • 5-A Conference 13/Capitol: Marshall
  • 5-A Conference 14: Briar Woods
  • 5-A Conference 15: Potomac
  • 5-A Conference 16: Halifax

Regional Results: (5-a Regional bracket): There were some small upsets in the play-in games in the first round of the 5A North regional; an under-seeded Stafford fell to Stone Bridge (despite finishing the regular season 19-2) and#3 Seed Atlee easily beat #2 seed Wakefield.  The other #2 seeds (Orange and North Stafford) advanced as expected to face the #1 seeds in the quarters.  Stone Bridge faces one of the best teams in the state in Halifax, whose #1 starter (Andrew Abbott) has a ridiculous 133/3 K/BB ratio this spring and is UVA bound (h/t NovaBaseballMagazine.com).  In the quarters, #1 seeds Briar Woods, Potomac and Halifax all advanced, while North Stafford blanked Marshall to advance to the semis.  In the Semis, Briar Woods thrashed Potomac 8-1 while Halifax held off the surprising North Stafford team 2-1 in 12 innings.

Region Final: Briar Woods destroyed top 5-A team Halifax 10-0 to continue a surprising run in the post-season (they weren’t even the #1 seed in their own district).

 


5-A South Region

  • 5-A Conference 9/Atlantic: Kempsville d Hickory.
  • 5-A Conference 10/PenSouth: Menchville d Clouchester.
  • 5-A Conference 11: Deep Run d Mills Goodwin.
  • 5-A Conference 12: Prince George d Matoaca.

Quick predictions for 5-A south regional tourney: Prince George at 19-1 and Hickory are good bets to advance

Regional Results: as with the 6A-South tourney, all four district champs held serve in the quarter finals, mostly with ease.  In the Semis, Prince George and Menchville advanced, with the Menchville pitcher throwing a no-hitter to add insult to injury.

Region Final: Prince George continued 5A dominance, topping Menchville 13-5.


Smaller Virginia Classifications

4-A West:

  • 4-A Conference 21 East/A: Heritage upset #1 seed Loudoun Valley then #2 Seed Loudoun County to win the district.  Heritage and Loudoun County to regionals.
  • 4-A Conference 21 West/B: Harrisonburg beat Sherando in a 2/1 seed upset to advance to regionals.
  • 4-A Conference 22: Kettle Run easily won the region over Freedom to advance as the 4A North #1 seed with an unblemished 19-0 record.

4A Regionals preview: (bracket here): Kettle Run and Liberty Christian Academy look like they’re destined to meet in the 4A West regional final.  In the tournament though, Kettle Run was upset early by Lynchburg’s EC Glass.  Liberty Christian won on a walkoff, and they are joined by Harrisonburg and Freedom-South Riding (which recently dropped down from 5A).  The semis were a contrast in styles, as LCA won 1-0 over Freedom-South Riding while Harrisonburg topped EC Glass by a football-score of 14-13.

In the 4A regional final, Liberty Christian won another squeaker, topping Harrisonburg 1-0, validating their move to compete in the public schools VHSL.

4-A East (Bracket here)

Preview: I’d say that the two best teams here are Great Bridge (which has great baseball history as of late and just dropped down from 5A) and Hanover (which won the old AAA title just before reclassification and can easily compete with 5A and 6A schools).  In the 4A East quarters, Great Bridge, Dinwiddie, Hanover and Jamestown all advanced to the semis.  There, the expected wins for Hanover and Great Bridge occurred, setting up a great regional final (thought it took Hanover 13 innings to top Jamestown.

In the 4A East final, Hanover held on to top Great Bridge 4-3 in a battle of two of Virginia’s top high schools irrespective of division.  This matchup, coincidentally was the 2013 State Final just prior to going to 6 divisions.


3A West: Turner Ashby blanked Brookville 4-0 in the Regional final.

3A East: Riverside beat Spotsylvania in the final 9-6.  Riverside is in Ashburn and is coached by the former Stone Bridge coach Sam Plank, fyi.

Lower Divisions 2A and 1A features teams from the smaller areas of Virginia and we won’t bother covering them this year.  IF you want to see their regional and state brackets, visit the VHSL site above.


Maryland

Here’s the 2017 state finals results in Maryland, played over the 5/26/17 weekend.  Brackets here at the MPSAA website.

A quick list of past Maryland State champions by division:

The Maryland public high school seasons are now complete.


DC Public Schools/DCIAA:

  • DCIAA: (2017 playoff bracket): Wilson defeated School Without Walls 7-4 to take the DCIAA title and continue its ridiculous winning streak within DC public school competition.
  • DCSAA: (2017 Playoff Bracket): Gonzaga beat Wilson 9-1 to win the DCSAA baseball title (Wilson upset St. Albans to make the final).

DC public (and private) High school seasons are now complete.


Private Leagues: WCAC/MAC/IAC and VISAA/Maryland Private

State-level Private School tourneys:

  • MIAA: Regular Season: Calvert Hall, Spalding and Gilman were the class of the MIAA Class A all  year.  Boys Latin takes the Class B regular season title while St. Johns Catholic is again the Class C regular season title winner.   Loyola Blakefield came out of nowhere to beat Calvert Hall in the MIAA-A playoffs (their first title in 71 years), having just a .500 record during the season.  Boy’s Latin beat Severn to take the MIAA-B final.  St. Johns Catholic ended up beating Gerstell Academy 5-0 to win its 4th straight MIAA-C title.
  • VISAA: The VISAA playoff brackets show the top 8 private schools in each Virginia division.  In Division I; DC local schools Paul VI and Potomac School were upset early, with #3 seed Benedictine taking the VISAA Division I title.  The Miller School took the Division II title with defending champ Greenbrier Christian getting upset in the first round.  Southampton Academy repeated as VISSA Division III titleists.
  • Maryland Private School “Governor’s Flag” Tournament: tbd.  Draws are here. Only seems like there’s 4 teams for 2017: DeMatha, Spalding, McNamara and Avalon.  I’d guess this would be a cake-walk for Spalding.

DC-area Private School Leagues

Of note, Maryland baseball factory Riverdale Baptist won their 4th straight NACA National Championship, finished the year 30-1 and nationally ranked in every publication that attempts to rank national high schools.

All Area private schools’ seasons are now complete.


Individual Player Accolades Announced

In addition to being playoff-baseball time, this is also the time of the year that we start to see player awards.  I’ll put these in as they publish, but we won’t expect most of these until the end of June.

Gatorade announced their player of the year awards on 5/29/17:

  • MarylandHarold Cortijo, RHP/OF from Riverdale Baptist.  Committed to play at Seminole State U.
  • Washington DCJack Roberts, RHP/SS from St. Johns.  Committed to play at Elon.
  • VirginiaAndrew Abbott, LHP from Halifax County HS.  Committed to play for UVA.

Pending Awards to be announced/expected later this spring:

  • Louisville Slugger All-Americans: pending
  • Washington Post All-Met teams: pending
  • The Baltimore Sun’s All-Metro Team: pending
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch All-Richmond team (if exists): pending
  • Virginian Pilot All-tidewater team (if exists): pending
  • Virginia All 6-A North Regional team: Langley’s Danny Hosley is player of the year (no PG profile/unknown college commit).  Madison’s Jake Nielsen pitcher of the year (a Junior w/o a current college commitment).
  • Virginia All 5-A North Regional team: pending
  • Other Virginia All-Regional teams: pending
  • Northern Virginia All-District teams: Available at this link at Novabaseballmagazine.com, thanks to Joey Kamide for all his hard work.
  • VHSL All-State Teams: pending
  • VISAA’s All-State teams:
    • Division I All State Team with several Paul VI and Flint Hill players.  Player of the Year: Evan Justice– Collegiate School, a LHP from Richmond committed to NC State.
    • Division II All State Team.  Player of the year: Ethan Murray– Miller School, a Junior SS/RHP who sports a 4.0 and is an early commit to Duke.
    • Division III All State Team.   Player of the Year: Carter Davis– Blessed Sacrament-Huguenot, a C from Powhattan committed to St. Andrews Presbyterian College.
  • Maryland MIAA All-State teams (if exists): pending
  • All WCAC 2017Jack Roberts, RHP/SS from St. Johns player of the year.
  • All MAC 2017 and all IAC 2017 also at Novabaseballmagazine.com’s site.

My master list of links used to cover HS Baseball:

Local and National High School Baseball Ranking Lists:

These National rankings are dominated by teams in Texas, Florida and California, as you might expect.  These teams can play nearly 40 games and usually have at least 15-20 under their belts before DC/MD/VA teams even get going.  So its somewhat of an accomplishment just to have a local team get some recognition.  In fact, any cold-weather state team appearing in these lists is pretty special.


Major Newspaper Links/Resources for following prep baseball around the state

  • Washington Post’s AllMetSports section with standings and schedule results.
  • The Baltimore Sun’s high school page has information on some of the programs outside the DC area mentioned in the Maryland section
  • InsideNova.com‘s coverage of high school sports, but has put limits on the number of stories you can read.
  • Richmond Times-Dispatch has a HS scoreboard.
  • Hampton Roads Pilot (Hampton Roads) has scores for teams in the Chesapeake/Norfolk/Va Beach area.
  • NovaBaseballMagazine: great coverage of Prep baseball in NorthernVirginia (thanks to Joe Antonellis for the heads up on this great new resource).

Local Newspaper Coverage, including links to many local papers covering smaller jurisdictions.

Non-newspaper Links for Local and National Prep Baseball Coverage

Good Twitter accounts to follow:

  • https://twitter.com/toddeboss/lists/prepbaseball: I maintain an open list at my twitter account via this link, which contains direct links to dozens of local resources (including all the below).  Way too many retweets from the travel team accounts especially, but its a good way to keep up with local ball.
  • https://twitter.com/PBRVirginiaDC: Prep Baseball Report VA/DC coverage
  • https://twitter.com/NVBaseballMag: NoVa Baseball Magazine
  • https://twitter.com/NoVAHSBB
  • https://twitter.com/DynamicBaseball

College draft-prospects with local-ties to keep an eye in for the 2016 draft

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UVA's Connor Jones is a likely first rounder in this year's draft. Photo via UVA sports

UVA’s Connor Jones is a likely first rounder in this year’s draft. Photo via UVA sports

For the fourth year running (here’s 2013’s wrap-up, 2014’s wrap-up, and 2015’s wrap-up), we’re going to keep an eye on “local” draft prospects leading up to the 2016 amateur draft.  By “local” I essentially mean anyone who hails from the DC/MD/VA areas plus anyone who is playing their college ball in the DC/MD/VA irrespective of where they hail from.


Here’s a list of DC/MD/VA college players draft-eligible in 2016 of note from our area.  We’re now to the point where HS seniors we covered previously in this blog are becoming college Junior draft eligibles; here’s our 2013 draft wrap up mentioning a number of these 2016 draft eligible players.

Major Local College Draft Prospects for 2016

These are the big-time names that we’ve been hearing may be 1st or 2nd rounders this year with Local Ties.

  • Connor Jones, UVA RHP via Great Bridge; a 1st round talent in 2013 who desired to go to college and he hasn’t disappointed; took over as the Friday starter by mid 2015, finished with a 7-2 record and a 2.96 ERA in 16 starts.  Pitched well in the CWS, getting an unlucky loss against Vanderbilt in the final.  Playing in the Cape Cod league this summer, on the 2015 Collegiate National team and on the MLB.com 2016 draft short list already.  Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 2nd team All-American.
  • Mike Shawaryn: RHP for Maryland; went 13-2 with a 1.71 ERA as Maryland’s friday starter as a sophomore.  He was named to Baseball America’s 2nd team All America in 2015.  2015 Collegiate National team.  He could be a very high draft prospect as a junior.  Didn’t pitch well for Team USA in summer 2015.  Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 1st team All-American.
  • Matt Thaiss, UVA C who led the team in hitting as a sophomore and is on the 2015 National Collegiate team.  Impressed while playing for Team USA in summer of 2015, with a top-2 round projection.  Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 3rd team All-American.
  • Buddy Reed, OF from Florida via Finksburg, MD (NW of Baltimore).  Not previously on the radar list despite hailing from Maryland b/c he attended a prep school in Rhode Island.  But he’s playing for Florida and is on the 2015 National Collegiate team.  Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 1st team All-American.
  • Errol Robinson, SS from Ole Miss via St. Johns Prep in DC: hit .297 and started every game for Ole Miss as a sophomore.  Getting a lot of attention in his junior year, with Ole Miss’ high national ranking and the general dearth of capable shortstops.

Other Local College draft eligibles w/ Local Ties

Some of these guys will get drafted, others may not.  But they’re all draft eligible, having gone to 4-yr programs 3 years ago.

  • Luke Gillingham a senior at Navy who was named Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 2nd team All-American.  There’s some history of Navy grads making the majors, including Mitch Harris and Oliver Drake in 2015.
  • Charlie Gould, a rising Sr at William & Mary.  Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 3rd team All-American, pre-season all-CAA.
  • Michael Morman, a 5th year senior/grad student at Richmond.  Collegiate Baseball News pre-season 3rd team All-American.
  • Daniel Pinero, UVA middle infielder who started 60 games and hit .300 as a sophomore.
  • Alec Bettinger, UVA RHP via Hylton: 50ip and 4 mid-week starts as a sophomore, could take a bigger role with the graduation/drafting of so many UVA arms in 2015.
  • Jack Roberts, UVA RHP via James River HS: struggled to a 6.08 ERA in 23 innings as a sophomore.
  • Andy McGuire, RHP from Texas via Madison HS: converted to middle relief at Texas, had 12 IP in 13 appearances in 2015, but does not appear to be on the Texas roster in 2016.  No idea where he is now.
  • Thomas Rogers, LHP from VCU via Lake Braddock: Initially went to UNC, transferred to VCU in the fall of 2014 and sat out 2015 per NCAA transfer rules.  Will be a draft eligible sophomore.
  • Tyler Ramirez, OF from UNC via Suffolk VA (Cape Henry Collegiate).  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Aaron McGarity, RHP from Virginia Tech (home town also Blacksburg).  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015 and made the All-Star team; prospects looking up.
  • Andre Scrubb, RHP from High Point U by way of Woodbridge VA (Hylton HS).  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Luke Scherzer, RHP from Virginia Tech by way of Midlothian VA (Powhatan HS).  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Nick Walker, OF from Old Dominion by way of Chesapeake VA (Kellahm HS).    Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Kit Sheetz, LHP Virginia Tech by way of Midlothian VA (James River HS).  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.  Not sure he’s actually still at Va Tech; missing from 2016 roster.
  • David Ellingson, RHP from Georgetown U.  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Andrew Yacyk, inf from Liberty U via Hagerstown.  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Andrew Knizner, C from NC State via Glen Allen, VA (Hanover HS).  Playing in Cape Cod league summer 2015.
  • Nick Cieri, C/IB from U Maryland, played in Cape Cod league and made the all star team.
  • Logan Farrar OF/2B from VCU
  • Parker Bean, RHP/OF from Liberty
  • Zack Rice: OF from UNC via Suffolk HS in Norfolk: converted to pitching at UNC: had a 2.31 ERA in 20 appearances in 2015.
  • Bryce Harman, jr 1B from ECU via Chesterfield, VA (Lloyd C. Bird HS).  Huge power potential but 1B-only guy, still projects as top 5-10 rounds in 2016.
  • Garrett Brooks, sr OF (CF) from ECU via Chesapeake VA (Western Branch).  Could be a classic round 6-10 senior sign this coming spring as a capable player who struggled early but is coming on late.
  • Luke Bolka, jr LHP from ECU via Mechanicsville, VA (Atlee HS).  Drafted late out of HS, has big K/9 numbers in small sample sizes and could easily feature as a matchup lefty reliever.
  • Mac Caples, jr OF from Virginia Tech by way of Midlothian VA (James River HS).

Sources used to kick off this post (which I started the day after the 2015 draft and update through out the 2015 spring awards season and the 2015 summer baseball showcase season):

Please let me know if you feel there are draft-eligible players with local ties who I should be following.  I don’t want to leave anyone out!

 

MLB Draft Results for Players with Local Ties for 2013

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Virginia Tech’s Chad Pinder represents the highest ranked Virginia-tied player in the 2013 draft. Photo via dailypress.com

After checking in with some local prep players early in March 2013, and then taking a more in-depth look at all the local player draft prospects (with a focus on any Virginia-based player) in May, here’s how the draft ended up working out for these and a few other Virginia players (table in order of overall draft position).

Couple of useful links while reading here: Total Team Bonus Pool limits for 2013 draft and Slot Bonus Values for the first 10 rounds of picks.

(Sorry for the formatting of this table at the blog itself: it looks fine in the WordPress editor and in the RSS feed)

Player Name Pos Current School Klaw Rank BA rank Coll Cmmt Drafted #overall Drafting Team
Chad Pinder 3B Virginia Tech 86 53 n/a 2nd-Supp 71 Oakland
Kyle Crockett LHP UVA >100 93 n/a 4th 111 Cleveland
Matt McPhearson OF Riverdale Baptist (Upper Marlboro) 62 136 Miami 4th 120 Arizona
Bobby Wahl RHP Ole Miss (from West Springfield) 66 36 n/a 5th 161 Oakland
Jimmy Reed LHP U Maryland (From Gaithersburg, MD) >100 >500 n/a 6th 185 St. Louis
Alex Murphy C Calvert Hall College HS (Frederick) >100 >500 Wake Forest 6th 189 Baltimore
Tyler Horan OF Virginia Tech >100 293 n/a 8th 252 San Francisco
Jake Joyce RHP Virginia Tech >100 >500 n/a 9th 286 Washington
Austin Nicely LHP Spotswood (Grottoes) 78 342 Virginia 10th 287 Houston
Ryan Cordell OF Liberty >100 196 n/a 11th 340 Texas
Alec Grosser RHP TC Williams (Alexandria) > 100 158 George Mason 11th 343 Atlanta
Conner Jones LHP Great Bridge (Chesapeake) 29 33 Virginia (strong) 21st 628 San Diego
Scott Silverstein LHP UVA >100 >500 n/a 25th 745 Toronto
Andy McGuire SS/3B Madison HS (Vienna) 74 196 Texas 36th 1069 Colorado
Jack Roberts RHP James River (Richmond) >100 360 Virginia
Thomas Rogers LHP Lake Braddock (Fairfax) >100 >500 North Carolina
Errol Robinson SS St. Johns (DC) >100 >500 Ole Miss (strong)
Alec Bettinger RHP Hylton (Woodbridge) >100 >500 Virginia
Zach Rice LHP Suffolk (Norfolk) >100 >500 North Carolina

Note that this is not an exhaustive list of Virginia or Maryland-tied players who were drafted; it is merely a list of some of the more notable names in the state pre-draft.   You can surf to MLB’s excellent Draft Tracker tool for the 2013 draft and query by state, which gives you any player who has a connection to a state (whether they’re from the state or attend college there).

Some thoughts here:

  • We continue to see the drastic effects the new draft bonus limits have on team’s decisions.  No longer are you seeing any high-end high schoolers taken with speculative picks in the 4th-10th round (much as the Nats picked and signed the likes of A.J. Cole and Robbie Ray).  Now, if a high schooler projected to go in the first few rounds falls … he may as well fall all the way out of the draft.  Consider what happened to Andy McGuire; pre-draft ranked relatively highly by pundits and projected as a 4th rounder by Keith Law.  What happened?  He falls to the 36th round where Colorado makes a (frankly) wasted pick on him.  So McGuire is clearly going to school.
  • Continuing on this theme, the number of college seniors and slot-signing players in the 4th-10th rounds continued to be high.  A number of Virginia-based college players went in this range despite not even being in the BA top 500 list.
  • Conner Jones is going to get his wish to go to school, falling from his end-of-1st round projection all the way to being a 21st round pick.  The lesson; the penalty for picking and missing on an upper-end pick is no longer just “saved” money but “lost” bonus money, so these tough-sign high schoolers went from first three rounds to nothing.
  • Bobby Wahl reportedly set out his bonus demands early ($1.5M or he returns for his senior season per Keith Law), dropping him from a worst-case end-of-2nd round projection all the way to the 5th.  Will Oakland find the money for him or will he go back for his degree?  Likely the latter.  Post-script: Wahl signed for $500k.
  • A couple of local prep players did get picked relatively high; Matt McPherson went in the 4th round to Arizona; will he take that slot money ($425k) or will he honor his University of Miami commitment?   And TC Williams hurler Alec Grosser was selected in the 11th round, which has a slot value of $100,000 unless Atlanta coughs up additional dollars saved elsewhere.  McPherson may want to take the money but Grosser likely could earn himself some cash by gong to school.  Post-script: both guys signed above slot deals; McPhearson for $500k and Grosser for a hugely overslot $400k.
  • The collection of high-profile Virginia hurlers who went completely unselected (the bottom names in the list above) includes a couple of guys whose lack of being picked surprised national pundits.
  • Lastly thought on all these highly regarded prep arms not being drafted: both the University of Virginia and North Carolina made out like bandits with this draft result.  All four major local UVA pitching recruits (Austin Nicely, Conner Jones, Jack Roberts and Alec Bettinger) are almost guaranteed to be going to college.  And UNC’s Thomas Rogers and Zach Rice will join that squad for the next three years.   The ACC should have some pretty significant pitching battles if these guys live up to their scouting reports.   Post-script: only Nicely ended up signing, for a big overslot $610k deal with Houston.

Mid-spring update on local draft prospects

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High Schools are heading into post-season tournaments and local prep players have had their chances to make impressions through the Spring HS season.  How are our local prep phenoms faring this year, and what players with Virginia ties may feature prominently in the upcoming MLB draft?

Note; it is difficult to find updated stats on Prep players.  I tried.  If you know where to find reliable prep hitting and pitching stats, let me know.  So there’s not much in the way of stats here unless they’re college players.  For all the players below I’ve listed if they appear in the latest top-100 draft prospect rankings from two reliable sources: Keith Law‘s top-100 draft list and BaseballAmerica’s top 100 list and top 250 list.  Instead of re-linking over and over, i’ll refer to these two lists in shorthand via the links here.

First, quick updates on the players mentioned in my March 2013 posting on 4 local players:

  • Andy McGuire: SS/3B: leading Madison HS in Vienna to a 19-1 record (with 19 consecutive wins) heading into the District tournament and a #1 local ranking by the Washington Post.  Madison is also an honorable mention in the latest USA Today national rankings.  I asked Law in his 5/16/13 chat about McGuire’s draft status (he’s regularly in the lower 50 of pundit’s top 100 draft prospects for this year, implying a mid 2nd round pick) but Law is “hearing” 4th round, which he’s surprised by and may indicate that McGuire will honor his U. Texas committment.  Draft Rankings: Law #74/BA #196.  6/6/13 update: some video of McGuire at this link; just watching him run and move and his body type I’m immediately thinking he’s going to struggle to stay at SS, echoing what scouts say.
  • Alec Grosser: RHP TC Williams: Nothing else has really popped up about Grosser after the initial flurry of articles, and he’s listed as “Signed” and committed to George Mason.  PerfectGame has his best measured fastball at 92, ranging 89-92.  That’s still pretty good and I’m guessing he’ll head to George Mason to see where his arm takes him.  His HS has not had the success one would expect with a dominant arm, sitting at around .500 heading into the post-season.  Not ranked by Law/BA #158.
  • Matt McPhearson: OF with Riverdale Baptist popped up on MinorLeagueBall’s Mid-Atlantic report recently with the note that he has “game changing” speed.  He’s still listed as a “Verbal” Commit to U. Miami.  I’ve seen him as a late 1st rounder on some mock drafts.  Here’s a good scouting report on him from BaseballHounds.com.  Lastly there’s some scouting video online of him, showing a good bat from the left-hand side and with some amazing speed stats: a verified 6.2 in the 60 yard dash and home-to-first in less than 3.8 seconds.  As the articles say; that’s Crazy fast.   He’s one of only three guys with an “80” scouting grade in this year’s class per Jim Callis (the other two being Jonathan Gray’s fastball, and Kris Bryant’s power, and those two guys are both going in the top 3 of the 2013 draft). The only knock on him may be his size (just 5’10”) but he profiles as a prototypical leadoff/center fielder.  Law ranked #62/BA #136.
  • Thomas Rogers, LHP injured all year is still verbally committed to UNC.  Nothing new to report.  Not ranked in either Law/BA’s lists.

A couple of new names that I’ve taken note of locally, by virtue of their college commitments to major Baseball programs:

  • Errol Robinson, SS from St. Johns, signed to play at Ole Miss.  He was #92 in BaseballAmerica’s top 100 pre-season draft prospects and had a nice Q&A with them in March 2013.  His PerfectGame profile and draft write ups indicate he’s a quick-bat SS who has the capability of going in the top 5 rounds.  NatsGM’s Ryan Sullivan scouted him about a week ago and wrote it up here.   Based on this interview (where he talks about how his Mom, Dad and sister all attended or currently are at Ole Miss), I’m pretty sure he’s going to honor his college commitment despite any potential drafting.   Not ranked in either Law/BA’s lists.
  • Alec Bettinger, a RHP with Hylton HS in Woodbridge, has a verbal commitment to UVA.  PerfectGame has him with about a 90 mph fastball.  He’s “small but athletic” per this MinorLeagueBall article (6’0″ 165lbs), which may have him leaning towards a future professional bullpen role.  6’0″ is really on the low-end for what scouts like to see in a starter (think Tim Hudson is considered undersized and he’s 6’1″ 175lbs), so it seems likely he’ll take his fastball to college to see how it develops.  Not ranked in either Law/BA’s list.

Other Virginia-connected big names being talked about in the draft (thanks to this MinorLeagueBall article and comments for crowd-sourced Virginia-connected names to target)

  • Conner Jones, RHP with Great Bridge HS, the HS of Justin Upton down in Chesapeake.  Jones is leading his HS to a current 19-0 record, good enough for being ranked 18th by USAToday/22nd by BaseballAmerica in the state title game.  He’s easily the best Virginia draft prospect this year and is the only guy that MLBDraftInsider.com has going in the top 50 of their mock drafts right now.  PG has him at 93mph with a UVA committment that he has told scouts he intends to honor, but he’s getting back-of-the-1st round notice for the upcoming draft.  As scouts have noted, these “verbal commitments” are pretty meaningless unless a player specifically fails to file one specific item prior to the draft (which automatically invalidates them; i can’t recall what it is right now but believe its a drug test).  So we’ll see.  Law ranked #29/BA ranked #33.
  • Bobby Wahl: RHP from Ole Miss, a good sized Righty who is Ole Miss’ Friday night starter and who hails from Springfield, VA (West Springfield HS).  He’s 9-0 with a 1.43 ERA on the season, quite a stat line considering who he’s typically going up against (the #1 starters of other SEC teams, easily the best baseball conference in the land).  Law ranked #66/BA ranked #36.  If he last til the late 2nd round as Law suggests, he could be right around where the Washington Nationals could draft him with their first pick (#68 overall).  However, John Sickels/MinorLeagueBall’s latest mock draft has Wahl going #31, more consistent with BA’s rankings.  It doesn’t seem likely he’ll fall to the Nats.
  • Austin Nicely, LHP from Spotswood HS in Grottoes, Virginia (way down I-81 by my alma Mater James Madison University).   PG has him as a lefty who throws 90 and is committed to UVA.  Law #78/Not in BA’s top 250, a huge disparity.
  • Chad Pinder, 3B Virginia Tech.  Described as a plus-defender, decent bat.  His season batting stats aren’t that impressive as compared to his teammates, so he must be some defender.  If he can really move to SS like the scouting reports say and still hit for average and some power, he’s a good 2nd-3rd round prospect.  Law ranked #86/BA ranked #53.
  • Jack Roberts, RHP from James River HS in Richmond, committed to UVA and per PG gets up to 92mph.   Big guy (6’4″ 200lbs) who I’d bet can add more velocity if he goes to college.   If he threw a couple ticks higher he’d probably be a big time prospect.  Not ranked in either Law/BA’s list.
  • Zach Rice, LHP from Suffolk (outside of Norfolk), tall lanky kid who slings it 89 from the left hand side.  Committed to UNC.  Worth mentioning since he’s been recruited by the best team in the country.  Not ranked in either Law/BA’s list.
  • Kyle Crockett, LHP from UVA.  He’s UVA’s closer (and a HS teammate of fellow draft prospect Chad Pinder).  He throws 90-92 from the left side but has impeccable control; he has just one unintentional walk in 43 innings this year while getting more than a K/inning.  Despite being used as a reliever, I can see someone moving him back to the rotation to see if his stuff can play for 6-7 innings at a time.  Not ranked by Law/BA #103.

Conclusion: Looking at this list, UVA stands to lose an awful lot of pitching recruits if these guys don’t honor their commitments.  Bettinger, Jones, Nicely and Roberts are all UVA commits.  But imagine that staff in a couple years if they all go to college.  Phew.

2013 State Draft Report: Virginia