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2012 World Showcase


Kelly Green vs. Crimson Highlights >>
David Rawnsley touched on the show SS Carlos Correa put on Sunday here . Some other highlights from the game.

-RHP Jose Orlando Berrios (2012, Juan XXIII, Bayamon, PR) is Correa's fellow countryman as well as a top draft prospect. His 90-93 velocity was the second best of the showcase and he threw two off-speed pitches, a 77-78 mph curveball and 80-82 mph curveball.

-LHP Anthony Seise (2012, West Orange HS, Winter Garden, FL) is a very interesting lefty with a projectable frame and 88-90 velocity and a slider at 80-82.

-RHP Zac Favre (2012, Providence HS, Jacksonville, FL) was also 88-90 during his three inning stint.

-OF Rey Ordonez Jr. (2012, Mater Academy, Doral, FL) singled and is a prospect with very big upside and power potential once his long, lean frame fills out.

-1B Matthew Vorbeck (2012, Corbin, KY HS) continued an impressive showcase, doubling and driving in two runs, showing a power bat with an easy path and lots of strength.

-Three Kelly Green pitchers topped out in the mid 80s with RHP Jesus Vazquez (2012, Vocacional de Caguas, Caguas, PR) at 85, RHP Normando Valentin (PRBAHS, Vega Baja, PR) at 84, and RHP Daniel Belmont (2012, PRBAHS, San Juan, PR) at 85.

-SS Ismael Sanchez (2012, Ruben Rodriguez Figueroa, Bayamon, PR) had a huge day with three hits. He employs a very aggressive swing at the plate with very good bat speed.

-1B Kristian Brito (2012, Ramon Quinones Medina HS, Yabucoa, PR) continues to show a power bat as he singled and doubled, making hard contact that registered 90 mph off the bat.
A Few Notes on Carlos Correa >>
I wanted to share a few thoughts and observations from this weekend about SS Carlos Correa.

We first saw Correa just about a year ago down here in Fort Myers and immediately realized that he was destined to be the first Puerto Rican named a Perfect Game or Aflac All-American.  We also found out over the last year that he's a very intelligent young man with an engaging personality who loves to play baseball.

We also found out a couple more things this weekend.  The first and more trivial is that we probably don't have Correa high enough on our 2012 Top Prospect List.  He's currently #9 and I think that's going to change.

More importantly, we found out that Correa is really improving as an athlete and baseball player and has a higher ceiling than we previously thought that he had.  That applies to both the draft and his potential Major League future.  I asked a few people who they would have taken at the same age, Correa or Manny Machado (the Orioles 1st round pick, #3 overall, in 2009) and everyone looked at me as if I was a bit crazy.....Correa by a wide margin.

There were two things he did this weekend that especially resonated.

His infield throw velocity during drills was an all-time Perfect Game record 97 mph.  With the utmost respect to the couple of young prospects who have thrown in the 94-96 mph range previously, including Lance McCullers and his 96 mph from the 2011 PG National, those throws weren't made using game type actions and footwork.  Correa's 97 absolutely was done with game actions....feet were moving, he worked through balls, one step release and a laser right at the first baseman.  Correa does tend to lay back in games a bit, as might be expected with his tools, but he can also show the flashy hands and ability to throw on the run as well.  The whole question with his future at shortstop will relate to how he is able to maintain his foot quickness and range.

The second thing was his two at bats in today's game.  Facing hard throwing Puerto Rican RHP J.O. Berrios in the first at bat, he got an 93 mph fastball on the inside half of the plate, pulled his hands in while turning on the ball (no easy task for a 6-4 long armed athlete) and top spun a line drive over the left fielder's head for a double.  In the second at bat, facing LHP Anthony Seise, Correa worked the count to 2-2 and got an 88 mph fastball right down the pipe and did what hitter's of his talent level should do with that type of pitch.....blasted a 390-400 foot home run over the left centerfield fence.

Summary:  Two at bats against top prospect pitchers, two outstanding swings with extremely impressive results.

I'm pretty sure that every scout on the Stadium Field for those moments has some version of "Wow" in his mind.  Plenty can happen over the next almost six months before the draft but when teams are talking about Correa and where to slot him, there will be plenty of "remember what he did in Fort Myers....." comments in the conversation.

--  DR

Team Gold VS. Team Navy Highlights >>
-Ryan Owens (2012, RHP, West Boca Raton HS, Boca Raton, FL) had his fastball sitting at 82-85mph with a curveball that was 70mph. Owens has a tall frame, with a long arm action, high 3/4 arm slot, with a fastball that was run and sink, and a curveball that has depth with good spin.

-Brad Torres (2012, RHP, Avon Park HS, Sebring, FL) had his fastball sitting at 85-87mph with his curveball that was 71mph. Torres has a high 3/4 arm slot, with a good frame, long arms, and his fastball has cut to right handed hitters.

-Jeffrey Rehonic (2012, LHP, Monsignor Pace HS, Hialeah, FL) had his fastball sitting at 83-87mph with it topping out at 88mph, with a curveball that was 76mph and a slider that was 79mph. Rehonic has a XL frame, throws downhill, has arm side run on his fastball, has an easy motion, good command, and he attacks hitters.

-Robert M. Garcia Quiroz (2012, RHP, IBAHS, Yabucoa, PR) had his fastball sitting at 83-87mph with his curveball sitting at 75mph, and his changeup that was 77mph. Garcia Quiroz has is tall thin frame, with a high 3/4 arm slot, hides the ball well, has a good feel for his change, and attacks hitters.

-Kyle Miller (2012, Estero HS, Fort Myers, FL) has a very similar, projectable body type to Quiroz and posted a fastball velocity of 83-85, topping at 86. He topped at 88 during the WWBA World Championship in Jupiter. His 72-75 mph curveball had sharp downward tilt and he also threw a 78-79 mph slider and 78-80 mph changeup.

-Dylan Drawdy (2012, RHP, Riverview HS, Riverview, FL) had his fastball sitting at 86-89mph, with a curveball that was 76mph, a slider that was 79mph, and a changeup that was 80mph. Drawdy has a medium frame, with a short quick arm, riding life to his fastball, and attacks hitters at the plate.

-Angel Alicea-Nieves (2013, RHP, Montverde Academy, Santa Isabel, PR) had his fastball sitting at 84-88mph with it topping out at 90mph, with his curveball that was 70mph. Alicea-Nieves has a medium frame with a low 3/4 arm slot, a fastball that has arm side run, an easy compact motion, and attacks hitters.

-Zachary Butler (2012, C, Coral Springs Christian Academy, Lauderdale Lakes, FL) reached base for the Gold Team this morning. Butler has a short compact swing, easy hitting tools, and squares everything up at the plate.

-Edwin Gabriel Rios (2012, OF, Osceola HS, Kissimmee, FL) showed well at the plate today. Gabriel Rios has a big projectable build, with an athletic frame, easy swing, and has power potential. In the field Gabriel Rios is defensively sound, and a good strong in the outfield.

-PJ Nowak (2012, MIF, Phillips Andover HS (MA), Plymouth, MI) looked good in the infield this morning. Nowak is a good middle infielder, with a quick transfer, has a good swing plane, and showed some bat speed as well.

-Jorge Fernandez (2012, C, Colegio Hector Urdaneta HS, Yabucoa, PR) showed well in the field today. Fernandez has a strong arm in the outfield throwing a guy out at home, and looked good behind the plate as well. On offense Fernandez showed some pop in his bat by hitting a deep fly ball to left center field.

-Angel J. Ortega (2012, MIF, Colegio Hector Urdaneta HS, Trujillo Alto, PR) reached base and also stole a base this afternoon for Team Navy. Ortega stays inside the ball well at the plate, is sound defensively, has a good arm, and good actions in the field.

-Janluis Castro (2012, MIF, Colegio Hector Urdaneta HS, Trujillo Alto, PR) went 3-3 in the game this morning with a double. Castro has a strong athletic build, with a quick bat, and has a good swing at the plate.
Team Dark Green VS. Team Black Highlights >>
Reece Karalus (2012, RHP, Mt. Si HS, North Bend, WA) had his fastball sitting at 88-90mph with a curveball that was 73mph, a slider that was 79mph and a changeup that was 81mph. Karalus has a big frame, with arm side run on his fastball, uses a 3/4 arm slot, with a curveball that has an 11-5 break to it.

Jake Fossick (2012, RHP, Charlotte HS, Port Charlotte, FL) had his fastball sitting at 88-91mph with a curveball that was 74-76mph. Fossick has a good frame with a lean build, has good control on the mound, and was able to strike out 5 batters in the 2 innings he worked.

Corbin Olmstead (2012, RHP, Thomas Jefferson HS, Tampa, FL) had his fastball sitting at 90-91mph with a curveball that was 72mph, and his changeup that was 81mph. Olmstead is a big strong athlete who uses a high 3/4 arm slot, with good arm strength. At the plate Olmstead had a couple of hits in the game for team Black. Olmstead has good bat speed at the plate, and drives the ball up the middle of the field.

Nick Longhi (2013, LHP, Venice HS, Venice, FL) had his fastball sitting at 86-88mph with it topping out at 89mph, his curveball was at 71mph and a changeup that was 76mph. Longhi has good late life on his pitches, with a live arm.

Joey Curletta (2012, RHP, Mountain Pointe HS, Phoenix, AZ) had his fastball sitting at 88-90mph with a curveball that was 73mph, and his changeup that was 77mph. Curletta has a large frame with a big build, and has good arm strength.

Zach Bird (2012, RHP, Murrah HS, Jackson, MS) had his fastball sitting at 86-88mph with his curveball at 70mph, a slider that was at 79mph, a changeup that was 79mph, and a cutter that was 85mph. Bird showed really good command on the mound, with a cutter that has good action to it.

Derick Capetillo (FA, RHP, U.E. Cabiams, Maracaibo, VZ) who is a free agent, had his fastball sitting at 84-87mph, with his slider that was 78mph, and a changeup that was 77mph. Capetillo has a good frame, with a good arm, and struck out 2 hitters for Team Black.

George Ragsdale (2012, MIF, North Point HS, North Point, FL) had a double in his team's game this morning. Ragsdale has gap power, and gets good extension at the plate.

Fernelys Sanchez (2012, OF, George Washington HS, New York, NY) had a single in the game for Dark Green this morning. Sanchez has good bat speed at the plate, and makes good consistent contact at the plate.

Chris Chinea (2012, C, Gulliver Prep, Miami, FL) had a couple of hits in the  game for the Dark Green team. Chinea has a solid build, had one of his hits clock 88mph off the bat, and has good catch and throw skills behind the plate.
Black vs. Crimson Highlights >>
-Black starter RHP Shaun Herbert (2012, Vernon, FL HS) is a very solid arm, throwing strikes and working 83-85 up to 87 and complimenting it with a 74-77 mph curveball.

-RHP Stephen Brooks (2012, Deep Run HS, Glen Allen, VA) topped at 90 and has clean arm action in the back and good feel for a 76-77 mph cuveball with late bite.

-RHP Kevin Boswick (2012, Shawnee HS, Medford Lakes, NJ) is a loose armed hurler who sat 84-86 and eas up to 89.

-Crimson RHP Seth McGarry (2012, Lakewood Ranch, FL HS) has a loose arm with velo up to 89 but it was his hard-breaking slider at 75-78 that got outs. It has sharp late break and McGarry has very good feel for it, able to throw in all counts.

-RHP Matthew Vorbeck (2012, Corbin, KY HS) is a power bat at the plate, but excels most on the mound. He pounded the lower half with an 86-88 mph fastball, running it up to 89 and showing a hard slider at 73-75 with late break.

-RHP Jose Mesa, Jr. (2012, Flanagan HS, Miramar, FL) is very similar to his famous father in body type and mechanics and was up to 91 with late sink.

-SS Kody Eaves (2012, Pasadena Memorial, Pasadena, TX) is one of the best hitters in the Longhorn state showing a smooth swing with easy bat speed and good plate coverage, ripping a triple to RCF in the 9th inning.

-C Jose Ortiz (2012, Juana Colon School, Comerio, PR) stood out with the bat, pulling the ball with authority in each of his three trips including a no doubt HR to straight-away LF in the tenth inning that went onto the road well beyond George Brett Fields's, LF fence.

-C Michael McClellan (2012, Union Grove HS, McDonough, GA) had the best bolt for Black, crushing a long home run in the 3rd inning, showing easy bat speed and big pull power.

-MIF Max Moroff (2012, Trinity Prep, Orlando, FL) can really hit, singling twice and doubling and each time command his at bat before spraying balls to all fields, including one which registered 94 mph off the bat.

-C Bryan De La Rosa (2012, Bucky Dent Baseball School, Toa Alta, PR) wowed during the workout and BP sessions and did again in the game. receiving very well, throwing behind runners and making very hard contact in his at bats.
Batting Practice Highlights -- Navy >>
OF Jamal Martin (West Palm Beach, FL) has long been one of my favorites and he took an outstanding batting practice today (before going 3-3 in the game).  Martin is a serious quick twitch athlete with plus bat speed and an aggressive line drive swing that squares up the ball consistently with gap power.  If Martin was left handed he'd be getting plenty of top round talk and with the way he hit today and the way he runs (6.4), he might anyway.

Twin brothers C Blake and 3B Shea Molitor are both hear from Plymouth, Minnesota and both have hitting talent.  Blake showed a bit better raw bat speed and a looser, more extended today, although Shea definitely hit the ball hard as well.  There was discussion about whether they are cousins or nephews of Hall of Famer Paul Molitor.

MIF/C Janlius Castro (Trujillo Alto, PR) is one of the rare switch hitters at this age who show similar mechanics and bat speed from both sides of the plate.  He's a high average type hitter who will flash some pull power.
Batting Practice Highlights -- Kelly Green >>
1B Kristian Brito certainly looks the part of the power hitter at 6-5/230 and opened many eyes among the huge crowd of scouts with 3 home runs and a bunch of other squarely hit balls.  Brito stays pretty short to the ball for his size and does a very good job of keeping his hands above the ball.  His swing mechanics reminded some PG scouts of former All American and current Giants minor league slugger Chris Dominguez.

SS Carlos Correa garners so much attention for his arm strength and defensive skills/tools but his power also ranks at the top of the scouting scale.  He has a simple swing approach and gets tons of leverage from his long 6-4/190 frame.

There are only a couple of 2013 prospects at the World Showcase but the most impressive is IF Jan Hernandez (San Lorenzo, PR).  Despite playing with a painful hip muscle injury, Hernandez has shown outstanding actions in all aspects of the game and looks the part at 6-3/185.  He has a very nice swing with whippy bat speed out front and present bat speed.

OF Lee Agosto (San Juan, PR) is a slender 6-1/180 athlete with a short, quick swing and deceptive pull power
Batting Practice Highlights -- Gold >>
Catchers have really stood out here (take a look at the top arm strength/pop times from defensive drills on a blog below) and Ian Rice (Huntsville, AL) is certainly among them.  He has a short, fast swing and has lots of pull power he put on display.  He has a big leg raise trigger and many young hitters have trouble getting their foot down in time, but Rice was down early and in rhythm and repeated his mechanics very well.

IF Zach Storm (London, KY) blasted 2 home runs and drove a number of others hard and is immensely strong, especially in his hands.  Like Alexi Rivera from Crimson, Storm hits with very little lower half involvement (his back foot is pretty much glued to the ground) and simply overpowers the ball with his upper half strength.  If hitter's like this learn to fully use their bodies and strength, the sky's the limit.

IF/OF Edwin Gabriel Rios (Kissimmee, FL) has added tons of strength in the past year but has kept his short, quick swing from the left side.

Batting Practice Highlights -- Dark Green >>
It looked like someone switched out the Rawlings PG baseballs for some juiced up models when Dark Green started their session.  The balls started flying out, as 6 different Dark Green hitters went yard, which didn't even include All American C Nelson Rodriguez (Brooklyn, NY) hitting 2 balls over 410' feet off the centerfield fence/hitter's eye that stayed in the park.

Two of those hitters fell firmly into the "surprise" category.

Switch hitting OF Fernelys Sanchez (Brooklyn, NY) is a highly ranked national prospect but despite his 6-4/205 frame isn't known for his power.  He jacked 2 balls from the left side, one of them a complete no doubter that had the PG scouts turning to each other with a "wow" expression.  Combine that kind of power with Sanchez' 6.4/6.5 speed  and you have something really interesting.

The other was from Venezuelan RHP Derick Capetillo, who we frankly don't know that much about, but who we quickly paid attention to when he blasted 2 balls over the left centerfield fence and didn't look too stressed doing it.

C/IF Wyatt Mathisen (Corpus Christi, TX) might have hit the longest ball (excluding Rodriguez's) with his loose and whippy swing, although big 3B Joey Curletta (6-4/230, Phoenix, AZ) could challenge that. Curletta is a big long to the ball, as many power hitters are, but he got in an outstanding grove and pounded the ball virtually every swing.
Batting Practice Highlights -- Crimson >>
OF Alexis Rivera (Kissimmee, FL) stood out for Crimson and might have had the best pure bat speed of any hitter at this showcase.  The 6-1/220 left handed hitter is immensely strong but has a loose swing and very quick hands.  If he learns how to shift/move through contact better and develops some rhythm to start the bat, he could really be a special hitter.

RHP/3B/OF Matthew Vorbeck (Corbin, KY) is a primary pitcher but showed very good athleticism during defensive drills and plenty of bat speed from a spread stance that gives his swing some lift.  He certainly has the ability to play both ways at Eastern Kentucky, where he has signed.

SS/OF Rey Ordonez Jr. has a completely different build (6-2/180 and very long) and swing than his Gold Glove winning father.  He does have a long swing but it's very smooth and loose with bat speed that's going to keep improving with added strength.

IF Kolbey Carpenter (West, TX) squares the ball up very well with quick hands to the ball and can really top spin it hard.