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PG Showdown team breakdowns
Wednesday, April 02, 2014
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Allatoona Buccaneers (Acworth, Ga.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Clarke Schmidt
Clarke Schmidt, RHP, 2014, 215
Grayson Harbin, RHP, 2016, Top 1000
Pete Derkay, C, 2016
Justin Evans, SS, 2015, High Follow
Kyle Jacobsen, LHP/OF, 2017
The pitching staff is lead by South Carolina commit and senior leader Clarke Schmidt, who at the time of writing this was 3-0 with a 1.00 ERA in 14 innings of work. Schmidt is no stranger to Perfect Game events having participated in several tournaments as well as the National Showcase last June in Minneapolis. Schmidt continues to grow and fill out physically with a gain in velocity each time he takes the ball. Keep in mind that Schmidt's older brother – 2011 PG All-American Clate – was a late bloomer physically and has come into his own at Clemson.
Schmidt and fellow senior Cooper Murphy (Emmanuel College commit) form a strong 1-2 punch for Allatoona, as Murphy owns a 2-0 record with a sub-1.00 ERA in 20 innings pitched. Sophomore Grayson Harbin has proven to be a key factor in the pitching rotation, serving as Coach Keith Hansen's No. 3 starter and helping out in the bullpen when called upon.
The seniority for the Buccaneers lies within the pitching staff as the offense is led by a solid group of underclassmen who will be together for at least the next two years.
Not only does the duo of shortstop Justin Evans and second baseman Brady Eeles hold down the defense up the middle, but they also help pace the Buccaneers offense. Evans, who is batting .500 with three RBIs, and Eeles, .368 and three RBIs of his own, set the table for Pete Derkay in the middle of the order who has one home run, 10 RBIs, and is hitting .391.
Allatoona has also received solid contributions from freshman Kyle Jacobsen on both sides of the ball. He’s batting .300 and plays center field when he is not on the mound.
Allatoona is a young club in terms of offense but have held their own in Georgia's 5A classification (second highest division) opening the season at a perfect 9-0. The Buccaneers find themselves atop the standings with the offense scoring 55 runs and the pitching staff also doing their part, allowing only 14 runs, and they haven’t allowed more than three runs in any game. Some of the pitching that the Buccaneer's may run into in Fort Myers will challenge their young hitters, but the experience will help Coach Hansen's club once the Georgia playoffs begin.
Bishop Verot Catholic Vikings (Fort Myers, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Evan Dougherty
Thaddeus Ward, RHP, 2015, 199
Evan Dougherty, OF, 2014, 333
Jonah Owenby, LHP, 2014, High
Dominick Stefanacci, RHP, 2014,
Jeffery Passantino, RHP, 2014,
University of Central Florida
commit and Perfect Game veteran Thaddeus Ward leads a senior heavy
pitching rotation, a staff that returns all their arms from their
24-7 season last year. At 6-foot-3, Ward can pump his fastball up to
91 mph and through 15 innings pitched this spring, Ward has yet to
surrender a run with a 22-to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Senior
Jeffery Passantino, who Coach David Nelson described as the “ultimate
competitor,” has been equally impressive this season with a 32-to-2
strikeout-to-walk ration through 22 1/3 innings and a 0.31 ERA.
Joining Ward and Passantino on
the mound are seniors Dominick Stefanacci (Tusculum recruit), who
owns an upper-80s fastball, and Jonah Owenby (USF), a pitchability
lefty with strong command of three pitches.
The pitching staff as a whole is
putting up video game numbers, allowing only six earned runs in 76
innings of play.
Duke commit Evan Dougherty mans
center field for the Vikings and is off to a hot start with the bat,
leading an offense that has scored a staggering 117 runs through
their first 12 games. Dougherty has scored 21 of those runs and is
batting .405 with two home runs, three triples.
As great as Dougherty’s .405
average is, he is fourth on his team with a minimum of 30 plate
appearances. Seniors Danny Tufariello (Tusculum commit, .455 batting
average), Zack Chappell (uncommitted, .444), and Jeffery Passantino
(Lipscomb, .429) lead a team that collectively is hitting .351.
To say Bishop Verot is firing on
all cylinders heading into the PG High School Showdown may be an
understatement. Through their last seven games the offense has
compiled 72 runs and the pitching staff has not allowed a run. Coach
Nelson only lost one player from last year’s team that lost in the
state semifinals, and the team is poised to go deep into the 4A
playoffs this spring with a strong group of senior leaders.
Concordia Lutheran Crusaders (Tomball, Texas) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Ke'Bryan Hayes
Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B/RHP, 2015,
Garrett Wolforth, C/INF, 2016,
John Grimsley, OF, 2014, 500
Cooper Bailey, RHP, 2014, High
Ty Clark, 2B/RHP, 2014, High
Of the five primary pitchers
listed on the roster, three of them are seniors. Cooper Bailey looks
to lead the staff along with LSU-Eunice commit Glenn Otto and
lefthander Alex Bridges. The last time Perfect Game saw Bailey on the
mound he was up to 84 mph in 2012 and checked in at 5-foot-8,
165-pounds. It’s very likely that Bailey has added velocity, given
two years of growth and maturity, as he now stands at 6-foot-2.
Ke’Bryan Hayes is a two-way
junior and Tennessee commit who is capable of running his fastball
into the upper-80s while mixing in both a changeup and curveball for
strikes. Fellow junior Brandon Ivey is a big 6-foot-2
lefthander who started off hot this spring for the Crusaders and
hopes to carry the hot start into the Showdown. Ty Clark is another
two-way guy that is capable of producing mid-80s fastballs and
provides solid relief.
As a whole the staff has
performed very well to this point and held their opponents to one run
or less in seven of their sixteen victories this spring.
The Crusaders’ offense is led
by three Division I commits on their roster: senior John Grimsley
(San Diego recruit), Hayes and sophomore Garrett Wolforth (Dallas
Wolforth turned in a solid
performance at the National Underclass Session 1 Showcase in early
December and looks to build off of that. He shows a smooth swing from
both sides of the plate with quick hands and nice power potential. As
solid as his bat is, Wolforth is equally impressive behind the plate
showing athletic actions, above average arm strength and sound
Junior Trey Jimmerson started
the season by swinging a hot bat, racking up multi-hit games with
numerous extra base hits from the left side.
Concordia Lutheran has had a
very strong spring to this point, opening up at 16-4 and have
outscored their opponents 161-70. They hit a three game skid after
beginning the year 11-1 but it is worth noting that all four losses
were by a one-run margin. If the Crusaders can continue to swing hot
bats there is a strong chance that they could find themselves in the
finals of the Showdown.
DeSoto Central Jaguars (Southaven, Miss.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Clay Casey
Austin Riley, RHP/C, 2015, 46
Clay Casey, OF, 2014, 96
Dallas Woolfolk, RHP, 2015, 157
Kyle Watson, SS, 2014, 487
Keegan James, RHP, 2015, 500
The Jaguars have a pitching
staff that is loaded with arms, several of whom have already
committed to a Division I college. Leading the way is physically
imposing junior Austin Riley (Mississippi State commit) who stands
6-foot-3, 225-pounds and is an elite two-way talent at the next
level. Perfect Game has seen his fastball in the low-90s, with higher
reports surfacing this spring, throwing with a loose and easy arm
Potentially joining Riley at
Mississippi State in two years is Keegan James, a 6-foot-2
righthander who can run his fastball into the upper-80s and shows a
strong feel for his breaking ball. Dallas Woolfolk is yet another
intimidating junior standing at 6-foot-3 who recently committed to
Ole Miss, joining shortstop Kyle Watson who provides outstanding
defense for his pitchers.
Lefthanders Drew Crosby
(Memphis) and Trenton Mobley provide Coach Mark Monaghan even more
depth and have been great this season for the Jaguars, allowing only
one earn run combined in almost twenty innings pitched.
The offense hasn’t had trouble
scoring runs as they have plated 76 of them through the first ten
games of the season. Leading the charge is recent transfer and Ole
Miss commit, Clay Casey. Coming in from Olive Branch (Miss.) High
School, Casey has made an immediate impact, batting a robust .500
through the first 10 games and has already connected for three home
runs. The hot start comes as no surprise as the athletic and
well-built Casey put his hit tool on display throughout the second
half of the summer circuit.
Most of the pitchers for Coach
Monaghan also play an integral role in the Jaguars' lineup, with
Austin Riley being just as lethal at the plate as he is on the mound.
Keegan James, Colin Coates, and Brant Blaylock have all seen time on
the mound and are all batting above .350 with one home run each.
Don’t let the 7-3 start fool
you as the Jaguars have a potent lineup with the ability to send a
quality arm to the mound on any given day. The lineup, both
offensively and defensively, present no obvious holes and are one of
the deepest teams in terms of talent in the tournament.
William T. Dwyer Panthers (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Thomas Szapucki
Thomas Szapucki, LHP, 2015, 10
Duke Stunkel, OF, 2014, 224
Hunter Whitman, LHP, 2015, 466
Colton Rendon, RHP, 2016, Top 1000
Tyler Ahearn, RHP/OF, 2017, High Follow
paper Coach Frank Torre has an impressive pitching staff and they
have lived up to expectations to this point, leading the team to a
9-3 start. All four have college commitments and have also provided
valuable innings for the Panthers to this point.
lefthanded pitcher Thomas Szapucki has been a household name now for
about two years now, having committed to the University of Florida
during his freshman season. The last time Perfect Game saw Szapucki
was at the WWBA World Championship last October where he took his
game to the next level, touching 94 mph with his fastball while
throwing an above average curveball with sharp, late break.
early like Szapucki is freshman righthanded pitcher and outfielder
Tyler Ahearn, who has decided to stay in state after his four years
of high school, committing to Florida State about a week ago. Ahearn
has a bright future ahead, having already touched 87 mph on the mound
lefthander Hunter Whitman and sophomore righthander Colton Rendon are
two big-bodied underclassmen who possess mid-80s fastballs and will
be certain to attract college attention in the upcoming months.
Panthers were hit hard by graduation last year and lost one of their
top bats in third baseman Hunter Hope, who is now at Tulane where he
has continued to hit.
Duke Stunkel looks to lead the offense and provide senior leadership
for a lineup that has underclassmen scattered throughout. The Florida
Atlantic commit participated in the National Showcase last June in
Minnesota, as well as the World Showcase at the beginning of the
year, and in each showing put his big lefthanded power on display. He
creates nice bat speed with lift to his pull side and has the ability
to change the outcome of games with one swing of the bat.
Panthers boast a young, talented lineup, both on the mound and with
the bats, and they have competed very well in the regular season to
this point. The offense seems to have overcome their slow start,
scoring at least 12 runs in three of their last nine games. It will
be interesting to see how the pitching staff handles some of the
elite offenses that will be in attendance and if they hold their own
overall. If so the team has a chance to make some noise.
IMG Academy Ascenders (West Bradenton, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Luke Bonfield
Luke Bonfield, OF, 2014, 52
Eric Feliz, OF, 2015, 71
Taylor Lane, OF, 2014, 198
Logan Allen, LHP, 2015, 118
Andrew DiLacqua, OF, 2014, 500
Ryan Karstetter, 3B/RHP, 2015,
To this point in the season the
pitching has been the Achilles heel for the Ascenders who dropped a
couple early season contests in the late innings of the game.
A pair of transfers
have led the staff this spring with senior righthander Stephen Hueber (transferred from Virginia)
and junior lefthander Logan Allen (from North Carolina) combining for a 5-2 record with 50
innings pitched. Allen is no stranger to Perfect Game events winning
the MV-Pitcher at the 16u WWBA National Championship, throwing very
well for the EvoShield Canes. Hueber is a 6-foot-5 righty who works
in the low- to mid-80s and generates nice sinking action due to his
Boston College commit Brian Rapp
has been effective out of the bullpen, picking up a save in IMG’s
most recent win, and has struck out 13 batters in 8 1/3 innings.
The IMG offense is led by a
number of potent bats, all of whom are committed to high Division I
schools and a majority of them are new to the IMG program.
Luke Bonfield is an elite level
hitter who put on a show throughout the summer circuit, consistently
squaring up the ball for hard line drive contact. The trend has
continued for the Arkansas commit into his senior season as he is
batting a sound .333 and has begun to drive the ball with some
leverage, leading the team in home runs. Andrew DiLacqua (Arizona
State commit) and Taylor Lane (Florida) have provided hot bats,
senior leadership and smooth defense.
Ryan Karstetter (Virginia) and
Eric Feliz (Notre Dame) are two high profile players from the
Northeast that have made themselves comfortable in Florida.
Karstetter is leading the team in batting average at .395 and has
played well on the left side of the infield, splitting time with
Lane. Feliz is a player who Perfect Game has seen develop nicely from
one event to the next, and now that he has started to incorporate his
lower half into his swing, the ball is jumping even harder off his
IMG Academy has not played a
light schedule to this point and have already played three teams who
are also competing the in High School Showdown – Bishop Verot and
Montverde Academy, Arlington Country Day is one of the Academies
tournament participants. The offense will carry the team and have the
ability to put a crooked number on the scoreboard in any given
Lowndes Vikings (Valdosta, Ga.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Josh Day
Josh Day, C, 2014, 379
Cory Pope, LHP, 2014
Logan Hutchinson, RHP, 2014, Top 1000
Nick Higginbotham, OF/RHP, 2014
Mason Miller, SS, 2015
Danny Redshaw and his Lowndes Vikings have had a rough start to the
season, losing several key components to a team that reached the
quarterfinals in last year's Georgia state tournament.
lost the ace of their staff before the season even began with
all-state selection and Kennesaw State commit Logan Hutchinson being
put out of commission for the entire season. Hutchinson has twice
been named MV-Pitcher in his Perfect Game tournament career and was
up to 89 mph in his most recent event last summer.
all-state selection Cory Pope has performed well as expected, taking
charge of the Vikings pitching staff. The lefthanded Georgia Tech
commit has picked up two wins this season and has maintained a
sub-3.00 ERA the entire season. Lefthander Henry Huff has been a
pleasant surprise on the mound, serving as the teams closer in the
early going while picking up a pair of saves. His line has been
impressive, striking out 14 in 20 1/3 innings and sports a 1.38 ERA.
the pitching, the offense has been plagued with injury after injury,
losing senior catcher and University of Georgia signee Josh Day,
along with Buck Carter, Andy Perking and junior Cody Mason.
outfielder Nick Higginbotham has stepped up in a big way leading the
team in nearly every offensive category, including a .382 batting
average with eight extra-base hits (five doubles, three triples).
Higginbotham also takes charge in center field and has been superb
defensively for the Vikings.
top underclass performer has been speedster Mason Miller, their
starting shortstop and catalyst at the top of the lineup. Miller
leads the team in stolen bases and has driven in seven runs at this
point in the season. Cole Bradley has filled in nicely for fellow
senior catcher Josh Day, batting .300, and is third in RBIs behind
Higginbotham and Miller.
Vikings were ranked sixth in preseason polls for the 6-A
classification in Georgia but, as noted, were hit big by the injury
bug shortly after committing to the Showdown. The season hasn’t
gone to plan but several of their losses were by less than three
runs. They are a team playing with a chip on their shoulder and
shouldn’t be taken lightly in the tournament.
Montverde Academy Eages (Montverde, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Keven Pimentel
Keven Pimentel, RHP, 2014, 80
Bryan Scheker, OF, 2015, 209
Rahman Williams, SS, 2014 271
Gabriel Garcia, 3B, 2015, 381
Nick Bottari, SS, 2014, 364
Montverde is a benefactor of
players from the Northeast moving south for the senior season of high
school, just as fellow Showdown participant IMG Academy is. The most
notable of which for Montverde is Keven Pimentel, a strongly built
righthanded pitcher who impressed the Perfect Game staff with his
mid-90s fastball at the National Showcase last summer which led to
his slection to participate in the 2013 PG All-American Classic.
Scouts will be lining up to see Pimentel throw later this spring as
he missed the second half of the summer circuit after suffering an
Currently leading the staff are
senior Bailey Ward and junior Stephen Santiago, both righthanders who
are uncommitted and sit in the low- to mid-80s with their fastballs.
Other players who have played a significant role on the pitching
staff are juniors Bryan Hampton and Julian Quintana along with
sophomores Tyler DeClerq and Ryan Williams.
Handling the pitchers are
seniors Nick Bottari and junior Gabriel Garcia. Bottari is a newcomer
and has worked hard to learn the staff and what they throw, but one
pitcher he won’t have trouble with is Pimentel. Both Bottari and
Pimentel transferred from Shoreham-Wading River in New York to
Montverde for their senior seasons and have both signed their letter
of intent with the University of Miami. Garcia has showed well at all
three Perfect Game showcases he has attended, never popping higher
than 2.00 seconds from behind the plate.
Bryan Scheker is one of the big
hitters in the Eagles lineup, and with the swing adjustments he made
last summer, he should be able to consistently crush the ball this
spring. Rahman Williams, who came down from an Illinois high school,
has proven to be a big pick up on both sides of the ball for the
Eagles. At the plate he shows a sound approach from both sides, while
he and freshman Cash Case have provided sound defense up the middle
of the field.
Like Williams, Case is a
switch-hitter, and despite being a freshman, Case will be competing
in the High School Showdown for his second year, thanks to his
athletic ability and the fact that Montverde allows eighth graders to
play on the varsity team.
With the senior leadership the
Eagle’s inherited from their transfers, and the fact that they lost
only two starts from last year's team, Montverde is poised for a
stronger performance than their 1-3 record at last year's Showdown.
Coach Layden and his team are off to an 8-4 start in 2014, with one
of their wins coming against IMG Academy, another participant in the
2014 edition of the Showdown.
Sarasota Sailors (Sarasota, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Dylan Busby
Dylan Busby, SS, 2014, 175
Jordan Gubelman, RHP, 2015, 155
Evan Mendoza, RHP, 2014, 244
Cody Brickhouse, 3B, 2015, 385
Zachary McMullen, LHP, 2014, Top 1000
Sailors will look to continue the ride the hot arm of senior Evan
Mendoza who has been lights out in his last two starts. The first
start he took down the No. 1 ranked team in the country and fellow
Showdown participant, Venice High School, with a complete game, nine
inning performance. For an encore, Mendoza threw a complete game
shutout with 6 2/3 innings of no-hit baseball. The strong bodied
North Carolina State commit is capable of touching the low-90s with
his fastball and also shows power with the bat from the right side.
Gubelman has long been on the summer circuit, appearing in over 20
Perfect Game events, and will be adding to that total this upcoming
summer. The 6-foot-4 junior comfortably sits in the upper-80s with
his fastball and frequently touches 90 mph while showing a feel for
two off-speed pitches. His changeup is the better of the two, showing
plus potential for the power pitch in the low-80s.
Cavallaro is another solid arm for the Sailors and is committed to
South Florida. Cavallaro is able to spot his mid-80s fastball very
well throughout the zone with hard sinking action on the pitch.
Joining Cavallaro with college commitments on the pitching staff are
lefthander Zachary McMullen (South Alabama) – whose fastball peaks
at 87 mph – and Andrew Beyer (Florida Tech).
bats have been hot for Head Coach Clyde Metcalf since the first game
of the season and show no signs of slowing up.
Dylan Busby was solid last summer and shows very nice versatility all
over the field. The Perfect Game staff is looking forward to seeing
Busby, who has been attracting attention this spring from pro scouts,
and has grown three inches since the National Showcase last June. He
showed intriguing power with this 6-foot-1 frame and it will be
interesting to see if he can create even more leverage with added
strength in his now taller frame.
junior third baseman Cody Brickhouse and senior catcher Brandon
Chapman will provide additional power for the Sailors.
Frey made his presence felt at the Florida Qualifier with the
Sarasota Baseball Club – a travel ball team put together with
players from the Sarasota High School roster – hitting his way to
MVP honors with a .526 average, two doubles and eight RBI.
you look at the Sarasota roster you won’t notice any commitments to
high-end Division I schools and that doesn’t faze the team at all.
Everybody knows their role and executes them extremely well, which
has resulted in a 15-1 start and includes a win over the top-ranked
team in the nation two weeks ago. They have ascended to the No. 4
team in Perfect Game's National High School Team Rankings and
are ready to match up with the other nationally ranked teams to show
what they are capable of.
Venice Indians (Venice, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Dalton Guthrie
Dalton Guthrie, INF, 2014, 67
Michael Rivera, C, 2014, 162
Ryan Miller, C, 2014,
Brandon Elmy, OF/RHP, 2014, 341
Trevor Holloway, 3B, 2016
Leading the pitching staff is
Brandon Elmy, a two-way player that impacts the Venice lineup on both
sides of the ball. Overall Venice has received strong contributions
from everyone that has taken the mound, and as a whole the staff has
combined for six shutouts, exactly half of their wins to this point.
Only twice have they allowed four runs or more and not surprisingly
those came in both of their losses.
There are not many high school
teams in the country that can lose their best hitter (Nick Longhi),
who also was one of their better pitchers, to the MLB draft and come
back just as strong, if not stronger, the following year. The Venice
Indians have done just that thanks to the veteran leadership of their
four Division I committed seniors in the middle of the lineup –
Dalton Guthrie and Michael Rivera (University of Florida), Ryan
Miller (Florida Atlantic), and Elmy (Furman).
While Coach Faulkner has his
four D-I commits to help carry the offense, it’s a team effort for
Venice, who has been a nationally ranked team throughout the 2014
season. Trevor Holloway is a sophomore that has stepped up in a big
way offensively, as has fellow sophomore Scott Dubrule.
A majority of the Venice team
plays together during the summer for the Florida Burn, helping to
form a tight knit team with great chemistry. That bond, led by the
four senior bats, propelled the Burn into the championship game at
the WWBA World Championship last October in Jupiter, Fla.
With the combination of talent
and chemistry that Coach Faulkner possesses on his team, it’s easy
to see why the Indians have consistently been a top five team in the
national rankings. Sitting near the top of the rankings will put a
target on their back, meaning they will more than likely see each
team’s ace as they enter the PG High School Showdown as the
defending champs as well as the favorites to repeat.
2014 PG High School Showdown-Academies team previews
Arlington Country Day Apaches (Jacksonville, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Fernando Garcia
Fernando Garcia, OF, 2014, 414
Christian Cuevas, RHP, 2014, High Follow
Sixto Torres, LHP, 2015, Top 1000
Isaac Nieves, 1B, 2014, High Follow
Garcia is one of three prospects on the Apaches’ roster that
attended the National Showcase last June, joining Christian Cuevas
and Sixto Torres. Garcia shows nice upside with the bat as he shifts
his weight through his lower half, and with fast hands is able to
create contact out front with nice extension. He is an excellent
runner, running a 6.52 60-yard dash at the World Showcase, and has
showed improved arm strength from the outfield.
is the biggest strength for the Apaches and is led by big lefthander
Sixto Torres who stands 6-foot-5, 210-pounds. Torres showed a nice
improvement with his fastball velocity from June to January, topping
at 88 mph with hard bite on his 74 mph curveball. It appears as
though Torres has also reclassified to the 2015 class. Cuevas is a
6-foot-3 righthander who topped at 84 mph and projects for more with
slight mechanical adjustments, showing strong use of his lower half
in his delivery.
Faith Baptist Eagles (Brandon, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Ronny Orta
Ronny Orta, RHP, 2014, 274
Maikor Mora, RHP, 2014, 500
Juan Campusano, RHP, 2014, Top 1000
Jose Monge, RHP, 2014, High Follow
Arthur Rolle, RHP, 2015, High Follow
biggest strength for Faith Baptist is clear by looking at the top
prospect list: pitching, and as the old adage goes, “good pitching
beats good hitting.” If the Eagles and their staff throw the way
they are capable, and the offense is able to score a few runs each
game, look for them to make some noise on the Academies side of the
Fermin is committed to the State College of Florida and is a
solid runner, posting a 6.70 60-yard dash time last summer and made
the 17u BCS Finals All-Tournament Team. Jesus
Astudillo is a strong, physical 6-foot-3 third basemen and is
committed to Bryan College.
Orta is the name of the pitching staff that is most
recognizable as he turned in a strong performance last October at the
WWBA World Championship. A State College of Florida commit, Orta is
capable of running his fastball up to 93 mph and generates swings and
misses with the pitch due to the pitch's deception and life. Maikor
Mora's fastball has topped out at 91 mph in previous Perfect
Game tournaments and is joined on the staff by 6-foot-4 Juan
Campusano, who has been up to 88 mph.
FTB Platinum (Orlando, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank):
Endry Guzman, 3B/OF, 2014
Edwin Muniz, C, 2014, High Follow
Evan Miranda, LHP, 2014, Top 1000
Justin Degrandis, OF, 2014, High Follow
Chase Rimes, RHP, 2014, High Follow
Platinum is a team that consists of players from all over Florida
(seven players), Venezuela (three players), and one player from both
the Dominican Republic and Guatemala.
Guzman is a strong-bodied infielder who Perfect Game was told has
plus arm strength across the diamond from the left side of the
infield. He shows a nice ability with the bat and owns a high
baseball IQ. Joining Guzman in the lineup are catchers Edwin Muniz
and Joshua Cordero, both of whom show nice tools behind the plate.
Cordero and shortstop Andruid Martinez both show an exceptional feel
for the barrel of the bat with the ability to use all fields.
Degrandis is a two-way player that bats lead off for Coach Persio
Rodriguez and shows nice power from the right side. He’s a solid
runner with a strong arm, and that arm strength also plays well on
the mound as he works in the mid- to upper-80s with his fastball.
Miranda is a strong lefthanded pitcher who Perfect Game has seen up
to 88 mph. The North Carolina A&T recruit shows a balanced,
on-line delivery with a strong feel for his changeup. Chase Rimes is
also capable of generating an upper-80s fastball from the right side
and has committed to Seminole State.
Future Stars Baseball (St. Thomas, Virgin Islands) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank):
D’Quan Matthews, RHP/OF, 2015, Top 1000
Jose Martinez Jr., SS, 2014, Top 1000
Emari Mills, RHP, 2014, High Follow
Kaleeq Brannigan, SS, 2016, Top 1000
Jed Joseph, SS, 2014, High Follow
isn’t the first time Coach Darren Canton has brought players from
the Virgin Islands to a Perfect Game event. In the past Canton has
brought Akeel Morris, a righthanded pitcher who was drafted in the
10th round by the Mets, and Deshorn Lake, who was selected
as a Perfect Game All-American in 2010.
half the Future Stars team still resides in the Virgin Islands or St.
Thomas while the other half have moved to the United States and are
enrolled in high school, most notably Lovejoy High School in Georgia.
D’Quan Matthews is one of
those players now at Lovejoy, and he looks to be the top arm on the
roster. Matthews has been up to 86 mph in past PG tournaments but
reports are that his velocity has climbed up a bit since last summer.
Jose Martinez is the leader of the offense, showing the ability to
hit to both gaps with a strong run tool and very good arm strength
from shortstop. Kaleeq Brannigan
is the top 2016 from the Virgin Islands and is able to consistently
square the ball up from the right side, showing a short, compact
swing with an above average arm from the left side of the infield.
Home Plate Citadels (Peachtree City, Ga.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Kel Johnson
Kel Johnson, OF/1B, 2014, 38
Matthew Rhodes, RHP/SS, 2014, 300
Casey Lenoch, RHP, 2014, Top 1000
Caleb Kunkel, RHP, 2014, Top 1000
Ryan Goodman, 1B, 2014
into the spring one question that surrounded Kel Johnson was “what
is he going to do this spring” given that he has been home-schooled
his entire high school career. Playing for the Citadels, who
have a packed schedule throughout the spring, allow scouts to check
in on Johnson, a power-hitting outfielder who has committed to
Georgia Tech. Johnson will be one of two Perfect Game All-Americans
in the Academies portion of the Showdown, joining Gareth Morgan of
the Ontario Blue Jays.
Maldonado has plenty of quality arms and is led by hard throwing
two-way player Matthew Rhodes who
Perfect Game has seen up to 92 mph on the mound with reports of him
being higher this spring. Despite his power arm, Rhodes is listed as
a primary shortstop and will provide some juice with his bat in the
lineup. Casey Lenoch is a
Kennesaw State commit who attended the National Showcase in June and
has thrown in numerous Perfect Game events throughout his high school
career. His fastball sits in the low- to mid-80s but creates nice
sinking action on the pitch due to his side arm slot.
Ontario Blue Jays (Thornhill, Ontario) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Gareth Morgan
Gareth Morgan, OF, 2014, 31
Josh Naylor, 1B, 2015, 13
Zachary Pop, RHP, 2014, 253
Robert Byckowski, 3B, 2014, Top 1000
R.J. Freure, RHP, 2015, 347
Game was able to get a look at a couple of these players for two
weeks as they traveled the backfields of Arizona with the Langley
Blaze, playing low-A organizational teams.
Morgan, the first Canadian player to be named to the Perfect Game
All-American Classic, is a player that scouts are really going to be
bearing down on in Fort Myers, as there is a lot of upside in his
righthanded bat. Morgan can be very polarizing in a single at-bat as
he will swing over the top of a curveball in the dirt, lay off a
similar pitch, and then show extremely quick hands and drive a ball
deep into a gap. Once he begins to lay off bad pitches early in the
count and find himself in better hitter’s counts, the potential is
through the roof.
Morgan, Josh Naylor and Robert Bykowski were both present at the
Metrodome last summer, Naylor for the Junior National and Bykowski
for the National, and both have the ability to generate excellent bat
speed and hit the ball a long way.
Zachary Pop has been up to 91-92 mph with his fastball and shows a
strong feel for two off-speed pitches. Joining him on the mound is
2015 righthander R.J. Freure who was up to 89 mph with his fastball
last October at the WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, Fla.
Salisbury Knights (Salisbury, Conn.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank): Austin DeCarr
Austin DeCarr, RHP, 2014, 114
Paul Campbell, RHP, 2014, 500
Will Toffey, SS, 2014, 500
George Hewitt, 3B, 2015, 281
Ryan January, C, 2016, 66
has been a top team in the Northeast for some time now and are ready
to make an impact on the national scene.
picked up big additions to the pitching staff this spring with Austin
DeCarr and Paul Campbell, both of whom are Clemson commits. DeCarr
has made some noise early on this spring with reports of him touching
95 mph on the mound. William Montgomerie (UConn recruit) and Scott
Hovey (UMass) are both righthanded pitchers that have touched 87 on
the mound, as has Jacob Lamb, a 6-foot-5 2015 lefthander who is sure
to garner the attention of college coaches this spring.
commit Will Toffey is poised to lead a potent offense with his
lefthanded bat and sound defensive ability at shortstop. Newcomer
Ryan January isn’t new to the national scene, playing for the East
Cobb program for the last several years.
SBO Storm Florida (West Palm Beach, Fla.) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank):
Martinez, OF, 2014, High Follow
Collazo, OF, 2014, High Follow
Lopez, RHP, 2014, Follow
Fuentes, RHP, 2014, Follow
Colon, LHP, 2014, Follow
SBO Storm organization is bringing two teams to the 2014 High School
Showdown-Academies tournament. The team from Florida has players that
can impact the game on both sides of the ball.
the team on the mound is senior Miguel
Lopez, a 6-foot-4 righthander from Coral Springs, Fla. who his
coaches say is capable of reaching the upper-80s with his fastball.
Jaime Fuentes is a
righthander from Puerto Rico, and like Lopez, is able to top out in
the upper-80s with his fastball. Luis
Quinonez and Enrique Colon
both have impressive fastballs from the left side. Quinonez is a
junior that has reportedly been up to 88 mph and Colon is a two-way
player who performs well both on the mound and in the outfield for
Martinez is the top
position prospect who shows above average arm strength and speed in
the outfield. Handling all the pitchers is junior Albert
Schmidt who shows soft
hand receiving with a strong arm on throws down to second base.
Martinez as the top player in the infield as his speed is equally
impressive allowing him to cover ample amounts of ground.
SBO Storm Puerto Rico (San Juan, Puerto Rico) - Roster/Schedule
Top Prospects (Position, Class, PG National Rank):
Velez, C, 2014
Rivera, OF, 2015
Rosario, RHP, 2014
will be the first time Perfect Game will be laying eyes on any of the
players on the roster for Coach Rodriguez and the SBO Storm Puerto
Rico. As the team name suggests, a majority of the players reside in
Puerto Rico, with two juniors living in Florida and attending high
school there. The team is heavy on underclass talent with ten juniors
and a sophomore compared to only five seniors.
Velez provides his senior leadership both behind the plate and
in the middle of the order for the Storm. Velez is a strong 6-foot-2
athlete who has showed sub-2.00 pop times according to the coaching
staff. Along with Velez’s bat, the Storm will look to junior
outfielder Oscar Rivera to
provide some offense with his righthanded bat.
ace of the staff is Bayron Rosario,
a senior righthander from Caguas, Puerto Rico. The four primary
pitchers on the Storm roster may not show the towering height that
other teams in the tournament do, standing between 5-foot-4 and
5-foot-9, but they will throws strikes and compete.
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