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Jun 06, 2013 - Jun 08, 2013   
  

TBD - ,
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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40
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1/25/12: The group of catchers that Zunino graduated with from high school with in 2009 was lauded as one of the top collections of high school catching talent in memory and treated as such by professional baseball. Almost three years later, Zunino has clearly emerged as the top catching prospect from his 2009 peers. Looking at group as a whole and how they have developed is very instructive. Luke Bailey (Tampa Bay/fourth round/$750,000 bonus): PG/Aflac All-American, injured (TJ) when signed, still catching up, .223-7-35 in 2011. Steve Baron (Seattle/first round comp/$980,000): First HS catcher drafted, defensive whiz, struggling with the bat, .197-4-20. Cameron Garfield (Milwaukee/second round/$492,000): Missed most of 2011 with injury (knee). Tommy Joseph (San Francisco/first round comp/$712,000): Big power prospect, .270-22-95, also plays first base. Austin Maddox (Tampa Bay/37th round /did not sign): PG/Aflac All-American. Zunino’s teammate at Florida, Maddox has played first base but is more likely a pitcher in pro ball. J.R. Murphy (New York Yankees/second round/$1.25M): Converted to catcher full-time as a pro, developing well, .287-7-46. Wil Myers (Kansas City/second round/$2M): Converted to catcher as a pro, now playing outfield. Top hitting prospect. Michael Ohlman (Baltimore/11th round/$995,000): Still looking to find offensive success, .224-4-51. Max Stassi (Oakland/fourth round/$1.5M): PG/Aflac All-American. First round bonus money, missed much of 2011 with injury (shoulder) Andrew Susac (Philadelphia/16th round/did not sign): PG/Aflac All-American. Went to Oregon State for two years, signed for $1.1M with San Francisco (second round). Jonathan Walsh (San Francisco/16th round/did not sign): PG/Aflac All-American. Went to Texas, now playing outfield, power and bat hasn’t developed. Michael Zunino (Oakland/29th round/did not sign): PG/Aflac All-American. 2010 SEC Player of the Year, .371-19-67. Overall, the nine catchers above who have signed thus far have collected over $9.7M in signing bonuses. When Zunino, Maddox and Walsh sign, with Zunino projected to be a top 10 pick this June, that total could reach $13M. What you really have from that group of a dozen catchers, though, is the following: • One outstanding all around catching prospect who has yet to play pro ball (Zunino) • One Grade A pro prospect who is not a catcher (Myers) • Two Grade B pro prospects who are offense-first catchers (Joseph, Murphy) • One very good all around catching prospect who has yet to play pro ball (Susac) • Five well compensated young men who the jury is still out on for various reasons (Baron, Bailey, Garfield, Ohlman, Stassi) • Two players who are unlikely to play catcher as professionals (Maddox, Walsh). The question therefore should be, what about Zunino has made him stand out as a future big league catcher from amongst these dozen top prospects? Could it have been predicted three years ago? Having scouted all twelve in high school, some extensively, this is how I would summarize it. Zunino, along with Myers, stood out athletically among the group as teenagers. Zunino ran a 6.76 at the PG National. He played third base occasionally and with his speed, athleticism and present hitting ability could have been a top prospect either at third base or either of the corner outfield positions. This is a very important consideration. I have always believed that you should never pay big money to a high school catcher unless you can say that you would draft/pay him in the same area at another position. The physical demands of catching are so severe that they are going to tax both body types that can’t hold up and offensive games that have a long ways to develop. Zunino has done the best job of the dozen in adding strength during the last three years and that shows itself both in terms of durability and in the ability to swing the bat. Some of his peers were either shorter with less room to add strength (Stassi, Baron) or already physically mature (Maddox, Walsh, Bailey) and didn’t have anywhere to go. Zunino’s gained 25 pounds of muscle slowly over the last three years without sacrificing much in terms of speed or flexibility. Part of that has to do with the advantages of playing college baseball over professional baseball for a catcher. While I’m a big advocate of turning professional out of high school if all the other personal factors are positive, the one position that I hesitate on is catchers. It goes back to the physical demands that an 18-20 year old catcher will have to endure in the lower minors. Case in point: Max Stassi caught 111 games as a 19 year old in the Midwest League in 2010, which doesn’t include spring training and possibly instructional league plus the countless bullpens he caught during the year. This does not imply at all that Oakland mishandled him or overworked him at all, that’s the way the business works. Florida rode Zunino hard behind the plate in 2011, he appeared in 70 out of 72 games and handled a staff where literally everyone threw in the 90s. After a short trip to the Cape Cod League, Zunino realized he was tired and went home to rest and work out. That’s not an option for a 18-20 year old professional catcher but it has helped Zunino likely peak out his physical potential/conditioning better than anyone else in the group. Personal Note: Zunino’s father, Greg, is a good friend and has been an area scout in Florida for over 20 years. The advantages of a catcher growing up in a baseball family cannot be understated (think Molinas). Max Stassi has also benefited from this among the dozen catchers in the 2009 class. Interestingly, the one achievement that Greg seems to be most proud of his son for thus far in his career is playing in the College World Series. They are one of the few father/son combo’s that have both been to college baseball’s premier event, Greg having played outfield for California in 1980.




Jul 14, 2009 - Jul 19, 2009   Southwest Florida Baseball 18U
  17

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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May 22, 2009 - May 25, 2009   Southwest Florida Baseball 18U
  17

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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Oct 23, 2008 - Oct 27, 2008   Southwest Florida Baseball
  19

Roger Dean Complex - Jupiter, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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Sep 19, 2008 - Sep 21, 2008   Southwest Florida Baseball 18U
  19

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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Aug 01, 2008 - Aug 01, 2008   EAST
  

Dodger Stadium - Los Angeles, CA
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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Jul 16, 2008 - Jul 21, 2008   Akadema / Florida Raiders
  17

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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Jul 08, 2008 - Jul 14, 2008   Akadema / Florida Raiders
  17

East Cobb Complex - Marietta, GA
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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Jun 13, 2008 - Jun 15, 2008   Black
  21

Metrodome - Minneapolis, MN
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 185   R/R

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6.76
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83
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1.82
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Michael Zunino is a 2009 C/3B with a 6'2'', 185 lb. frame from Cape Coral, FL who attends Mariner HS. Zunino is a solidly built very athletic catcher who can hit. He is quick, with arm strength behind the plate as shown by his 1.82 pop and 81mph throws from behind the plate. He also has the ability to play 3B or the OF and can run as he was clocked in at 6.76 in the sixty. At the plate he has very good bat speed and big power potential. He has a good approach and his hands work well in his swing. The ball comes off his bat well and jumps to all fields. He has verbally committed to the Florida Gators, but will also create strong draft interest. Aflac All American
PG Grade 10.0




Videos  provided by  Skillshow
Michael Zunino Hitting 2008 National Showcase
Michael Zunino IF 2008 National Showcase
Michael Zunino 60 2008 National Showcase
Click here for updated info provided by this player on Skillshow's 'Athletic Career Tracking System'
Jan 05, 2008 - Jan 06, 2008   Gold World
  18

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 192   R/R

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6.96
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78
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Michael Zunino is a 2009 C/3B with a 6'2'', 192 lb. frame from Cape Coral, FL who attends Mariner HS. Tall athletic build, body projects very well, highest-level catching prospect, good bat speed, level swing plane, great raw power potential, stays inside the ball, hits the ball to where it is pitched, quick hands, centers the ball well, huge offensive upside, very good arm strength behind the plate, quick feet, soft hands, easy fluid actions, athletic, runs well, great receiver, makes all the plays, strong student, highest-level prospect.
PG Grade 10.0




Videos  provided by  Skillshow
Michael Zunino 60 2008 World Showcase
Michael Zunino Hitting 2008 World Showcase
Michael Zunino C 2008 World Showcase
Click here for updated info provided by this player on Skillshow's 'Athletic Career Tracking System'
Dec 28, 2007 - Dec 30, 2007   9-Gold
  17

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 192   R/R

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7.09
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82
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Michael Zunino is a 2009 C/3B with a 6'2'', 192 lb. frame from Cape Coral, FL who attends Mariner HS. Strong, athletic frame, quick feet, quick transfer and release, excellent catch and throw skills, receives and blocks well, plus arm strength, quick hands at plate, gap to gap power, ball carries off bat, uses all fields, excellent bat speed, Top level folllow. He was named to the top prospect team at this event.
PG Grade 10.0




Videos  provided by  Skillshow
Michael Zunino 60 2007 National Underclass Showcase
Michael Zunino C 2007 National Underclass Showcase
Michael Zunino Hitting 2007 National Underclass Showcase
Click here for updated info provided by this player on Skillshow's 'Athletic Career Tracking System'
Oct 25, 2007 - Oct 29, 2007   Southwest Florida Baseball
  19

Roger Dean Complex - Jupiter, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 192   R/R

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Oct 05, 2007 - Oct 08, 2007   SWFL Baseball Underclassmen
  19

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 190   R/R

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Aug 09, 2007 - Aug 10, 2007   Navy
  27

USD - San Diego, CA
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 190   R/R

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7.20
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Videos  provided by  Skillshow
Michael Zunino C 2007 PG AFLAC
Michael Zunino Hitting 2007 PG AFLAC
Click here for updated info provided by this player on Skillshow's 'Athletic Career Tracking System'
Jul 17, 2007 - Jul 22, 2007   SWFL Baseball Underclassmen
  17

East Cobb Complex - Marietta, GA
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 190   R/R

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Jul 10, 2007 - Jul 15, 2007   SWFL Baseball Underclassmen
  17

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 190   R/R

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Jun 22, 2007 - Jun 24, 2007   Southwest Florida Baseball
  19

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 190   R/R

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Jun 09, 2007 - Jun 10, 2007   Columbia Blue
  16

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-1 185   R/R

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6.97
40
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80
Pop
1.79
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Michael Zunino is a 2009 C/3B with a 6'1'', 185 lb. frame from Cape Coral, FL who attends Mariner HS. Pro Profile build and tools. Very quick defensive actions, plus arm strength, works to stay compact, 1.79 pop. Plus bat speed, ball jumps hard, big power potential, has some lift in swing, attacks the ball hard, can free up his lower half some. Has the tools and great makeup. Premium prospect.
PG Grade 10.0




Videos  provided by  Skillshow
Michael Zunino 60 2007 Sunshine East Showcase
Click here for updated info provided by this player on Skillshow's 'Athletic Career Tracking System'
Jun 01, 2007 - Jun 03, 2007   SWFL Baseball Underclassmen
  17

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-2 190   R/R

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Dec 28, 2006 - Dec 30, 2006   4-Columbia Blue
  15

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-1 185   R/R

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7.24
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77
Pop
1.83
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Michael Zunino is a 2009 C/3B with a 6'1'', 185 lb. frame from Cape Coral FL, who attends Mariner HS. He has an athletic build with good present strength and the chance for much more. Zuninio was named to the showcase Top Prospect Team. He has a very good balance between hitting and defensive skills for a young catcher and polished tools. He's also athletic enough to play other positions well when he's not catching. Zunino threw 77 mph during drills with a best pop time of 1.83, excellent for anyone, especially a 2009 prospect. He has very good arm strength and smooth release and arm stroke. Zunino's feet are quick and light behind the plate and he receives the ball well. He has all the tools to be a top level defensive catcher. Offensively, Zunino hits from a square, upright stance and has good present bat speed. He has strong hands and can drive the ball to all fields. Zunino tends to drift into pitches and hit off his front side, which can effect his timing, but he shows power and hitting ability. Zunino is a very good national level follow who should continue to develop. He is also a good student.
PG Grade 9.5




Videos  provided by  Skillshow
Michael Zunino Hitting 2006 National Underclass Showcase
Michael Zunino C 2006 National Underclass Showcase
Michael Zunino 60 2006 National Underclass Showcase
Click here for updated info provided by this player on Skillshow's 'Athletic Career Tracking System'
Oct 26, 2006 - Oct 30, 2006   Southwest Florida Baseball
  19

Roger Dean Complex - Jupiter, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-1 185   R/R

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Oct 06, 2006 - Oct 09, 2006   SWFL Baseball '08
  19

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-1 185   R/R

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Oct 07, 2005 - Oct 10, 2005   Tampa Bay Raiders 16U
  3

Terry Park - Ft. Myers, FL
Michael Zunino
C 3B 6-0 165   R/R

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