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2012 Coach Bob Invitational

Coach Bob National Invitational

 



Saturday, March 31
Friday, March 30
3/30/2012 7:44:44 PM

On the final day of the 2012 Coach Bob National Invitational host Boulder Creek HS (AZ) had a jekyl & hyde showing.

Boulder Creek (AZ) vs Regis Jesuit (CO)
In the first game of the day, a tuneup in the open section Boulder Creek ran into 6-foot-6 left hander David Peterson of Regis Jesuit.

Boulder Creek had gone 10-2 coming into the matchup, but after allowing six runs in the top of the first they were already in a hole too deep to climb out of.

David Peterson threw a complete game shutout for Regis in the 2011 5A state semifinals on the Raiders' run to capture their second ever state championship.

While this performance may not quite match that lofty accomplishment, it at least comes close. Peterson sat 83-86 with his fastball, touching 87 once in the first inning and one on the final pitch of the game (a called third strike). His curveball sat 74-75 with good spin, though he tends to get on the side of it. He also mixed in an occasional 78 mph changeup.

Peterson has an intimidating mound present thanks to his size, he throws with a sharp downhill plane in spite of not staying as tall as he can in the backside, and has a quick loose arm. His fastball showed good tailing action to the arm side and as the game wore on he began to find his command, locating to both sides of the plate well.

Peterson struck out seven and didn't allow a single hit against a talented Boulder Creek lineup. With his size and arm it is unlikely to be the last big game of Peterson's career and we look forward to seeing what he has in store in the future.

Video of Peterson:


National Division Championship: Boulder Creek (AZ) vs Sheldon (OR)
Boulder Creek looked like a completely different team in the second half of the doubleheader. 2012 LHP Alex Lownes put up a zero in the top half of the first and let his offense go to work.

2012 SS West Tunnell got it started with an infield single in which he ran 4.02 seconds home to first (MLB average for a left handed hitter). He would come around to score on a single up the middle off the bat of 2012 C David Real, which registered at 95 mph off the bat. When the dust settled the Jaguars were staked to a 4-0 lead.

Lownes sat 77-81, touching 82 and his funky arm action from the left side gave Sheldon's hitters trouble the first time through the order.

Tunnell would finish the game 4-for-4, continuing his red-hot hitting all tournament. Real would crush another ball hard up the middle in his next at-bat, this time registering at 92 mph.

Video of Tunnell:


Sheldon put up a fight, battling their way back into the game in the later innings. But their rally came up short and Boulder Creek claimed their second consecutive Coach Bob National Invitational National Division championship.

We well have a full recap story and tournament wrapup coverage including the top prospect list (with scouting reports) on Monday. 
Thursday, March 29
3/30/2012 1:24:02 AM

American Division Championship: Valley Vista (AZ) vs North Canyon (AZ)

Valley Vista entered the matchup with a 5-1 record at the Coach Bob National Invitational, with their lone loss coming in the Open Section a week ago against back-to-back defending New Mexico state champions Piedra Vista (NM). The Monsoon pulled out a few tough matchups in pool play, pulling away from Ponderosa (CO) late in a 5-1 victory, knocking off Churchill (OR) in an extra innings slugfest 11-10 and again out slugging Prescott (AZ) 15-11.

North Canyon bounced back from a 12-1 trouncing on their home field in the opener against Pine Creek (CO). They came back with gritty one-run victories over Clackmas (OR) in 12 innings and ThunderRidge (CO).

North Canyon jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first before the Monsoon came storming back with six runs in the bottom of the first. They would continue to hammer the ball all over the yard, cruising to a 13-3 victory in six innings.

Valley Vista's prospects have been covered at length previously in the blogs and the team will also be represented in the post-tournament top prospect list.

-North Canyon 2014 OF Kyle Lewis is young and physically immature, but he impressed not only with his long two-strike battle in which he spoiled several potential strikeout pitches, but also with his quick fluid swing. As he matures physically and adds strength he will begin to drive the ball with more authority and has a chance to develop Home Run power.

-North Canyon 2013 MIF Alberto Higuero showed a short compact swing path, taking his hands directly to the baseball well, showing why the Rattlers coaching staff penciled him into the leadoff spot in the order.

-North Canyon 2013 RHP Jesse Kinney showed some ability with the bat, the ball sounds different when Kinney squares it up and he generates solid bat speed with a longer swing, with development he could become a dangerous hitter.


Regis Jesuit (CO) vs Willamette (OR)


Getting another look at the defending Colorado 5A state champions did a lot to give us a better idea of the physical capacity of several of their prospects.

-Regis 2014 MIF Max George showed a very good leadoff approach. He continued to show good bat speed and a short swing but today we got a better look at his advanced feel for hitting, as he showed good bat control and made adjustments as his at-bats went along. He also showed off his range making a highlight caliber diving catch on a popup down the right field foul line, ranging aprox 150 feet to his left to steal an out for his pitcher.

-Regis 2013 SS Brody Weiss was even more impressive today. Weiss had exactly two bad swings all game long, but both of which were actually positives. The first swing he fisted into right field for an excuse-me single, but the other really showed off his raw bat speed. One an outside pitch that he could have driven the other way, Weiss tried to get long and swing around the ball to pull it with authority. No scout is going to care that he misjudged one pitch in an early season game his junior year of high school, but what we will take away is how much bat speed he was able to generate when he took a full swing. He generally keeps his swing short and under control, generating his bat speed with ease. The exception confirmed our expectation as to the caliber of his raw bat speed, and certainly is nothing to be concerned over given his usual level of hitability. He further cemented the assessment of his bat speed later with a fly ball that hung in the air for 6.02 seconds (MLB average). He also continued to show off his arm strength, with good carry on his throws and is a very interesting prospect to watch closely going forward.

-Regis 2013 OF Andrew Schmidt showed a quick bat, blasting a double to right center field and had two high popups in his first three at bats. The hangtime on his fly balls were 5.50 and 5.63 seconds, his swing features good leverage and extension through the baseball, a common theme amongst Regis hitters.

-2014 LHP/1B Reagan Todd showed off his ability as a position player today after pitching well in his season debut on Tuesday. He made several tough plays on fly balls near the fence and opposing dugout on the RF line defensively. At the plate we got to see his left handed swing, in which he incorporates his lower half well and showed quick hands.

-Regis 2012 1B Jordan Kennedy continued to show his power potential from the cleanup spot, crushing a ball deep to right field and also driving another one that registered at 88 mph off the bat.

-Regis 2012 RHP/OF Eddie Schreuber's effort paid off on a towering pop fly to 2B, as he ran hard the whole way while his towering popup gave Wilamette's infield trouble, the ball dropped in and Schruber wound up on second as a result.

-Willamette 2012 OF Zach Selby crushed a double to deep left field, it was a towering fly ball that held up in the air for 6.22 seconds. Selby takes a big swing and can generate good bat speed as a result, he also has some good athleticism.

-Wilamette 2013 OFs Jalen Drath and Cole Hathaway also stood out. Hathaway runs well and covered solid ground in centerfield, while Drath showed a quick bat and leverage in his swing with good pop.
 
Wednesday, March 28
3/29/2012 11:45:30 AM

On the last day of a full slate there was plenty of action. Championship games are set for Thursday and Friday. Wednesday saw several impressive arms on display.

ThunderRidge (CO) vs Pine Creek (CO)
These two Colorado 5A schools rarely ever meet, as Pine Creek hails from the Colorado Springs area and ThunderRidge is located in the Denver suburb of Highlands Ranch. They also bucked the recent trend at the  Coach Bob Invitational of Colorado teams sending lefties to the hill, as both teams started quality right handers in this matchup.

-Pine Creek 2012 RHP Ryan Warner was the main attraction, drawing a medium sized gathering of MLB scouts, most of whom were getting their first look at the 6-foot-7 hurler of the spring. Warner is very tall and lanky, and as is common with pitchers with his build, he tends to struggle to maintain his balance through his delivery at times. It affected his timing, causing him to be up in the zone quite a bit, and let to several balls getting hit hard. But the scouts weren't here to see his present mechanics, especially this early in the season. What stood out most was the hard spin and big depth of his curveball (up to 76 mph). He also put up the requisite fastball velocities for a draft prospect, sitting 87-90 during the early innings and 86-88 as the game went along. He has a long fast arm and delivers the ball with a sharp downhill angle thanks to his long frame and high 3/4 arm slot. He used a few changeups at 76 as well, he doesn't have a lot of feel for the pitch at present but shows good fading life to the arm side and his feel for it is a bit ahead of most high school hurlers already. Overall, Warner is a very projectable pitching prospect that you can dream on, it's tough to get a feel for where he is at in such an early start and MLB scouts will take a few more looks at him as the spring progresses, but so far so good. Warner is committed to NC State.

Video of Warner:


-While Warner was the main attraction, it was ThunderRidge 2014 RHP AJ Jones who earned the win. The sophomore right hander sat 83-85, touching 86 several times early on. He would go on to throw a complete game in ThunderRidge's 6-5 victory, and handled it well when did give up runs (mostly late). In the early innings Young worked exclusively off of his fastball, and was surprisingly effective in doing so. He began going to his breaking ball, a solid 11-5 diagonal breaker with good spin rate and some depth to it, but more importantly he showed good feel for the pitch today. When Young gets out over his front side he showed good command, and he did so throughout much of the game. He's already got an idea how to pitch and as he gets stronger and adds more power to his repertoire he has a chance to develop into an interesting prospect. He is one to keep an eye on going forward.

Video of Jones:


-ThunderRidge 2014 SS Brady Westmoreland was another Grizzlies sophomores who made the most of his opportunity playing in front of the Four Corners area scouts, as he announced his presence immediately, driving an 89 mph fastball from Warner that was up in the zone out of dead center field for a solo Home Run in the first. It turned out to be his only official at bat of the game, as he would draw a pair of walks in his final two plate appearances, though he showed well working the count and continued to show off his good bat speed on the swings he did take. He also played a good shortstop for the Grizzlies. It seems that the Grizzlies could be a legitimate force in two years when Young and Westmoreland are seniors, should everything work for them.

-ThunderRidge 2012 OF Ryan Anderson would also homer for the Grizzlies as part of a 2-for-3 day at the plate. Other ThunderRidge standouts from this game include: 2013 C/INF Josh Newell and 2013 C Jake Hand.

-Pine Creek 2013 MIF CJ Krainock also got in on the offensive fireworks, launching two Home Runs to left field, including one no-doubter in the bottom of the third (the only run AJ Jones would allow in his first five innings). His first homer cut the lead to 4-1, and his three run shot in the seventh pulled the Eagles to within a run at 6-5.

-One day after impressing on the mound, Pine Creek 2013 LHP/1B Reagan Biechler showed well with the bat. Going 2-for-3 with an RBI double. Biechler drove a single that registered at 88 mph off the bat in the early going and had a popfly that posted a hangtime of 5.72 seconds.

-Pine Creek 2013 INF Brandon picked up another hit and continued to show interesting tools, with a popup hangtime of 5.87 seconds and a home to first time of 4.32 from the right side. He's now 5-for-9 on the trip, with a pair of doubles, three runs and three RBIs through three games.

Mt Vista (CO) vs Higley (AZ)
Thanks to the combination of scattered field locations and Phoenix traffic we weren't able to get to arrive until the third inning. But the 80 minute drive was necessary after getting a tip about 2013 RHP/SS Michael Klein. Klein did not disappoint, as he took a no-hitter into the seventh inning. From the third inning on he sat 84-88 with life on his fastball, it is quite possible that he touched a mile or two per hour higher in the early going, given his arm strength. He didn't got to his secondary stuff much until the fifth inning, and really didn't need to in this game. His fastball was dominating, as he was able to throw it for strikes and throw it by hitters. He backed it up with an upper 70s breaking ball and rare changeup. Kelin was equally impressive with the bat, stroking a bases loaded double in his first at bat after our arrival. It was an effortless swing on a fastball at the knees that carried well down the left field line to plate three runs. Klein has yet to make a college commitment, and is not as well known as he ought to be bacuse of his dual-sport football background, which prevents him from attending as many showcase events in the summer and especially the fall. He would lose his no-hitter in the 7th on a triple, and his shutout on a wild pitch, but would finish the game with 12 strikeouts in six innings plus.

Video of Klein:


Columbine (CO) vs Sheldon (OR)
The two pitchers that started for each team couldn't have been much more different from each other.  2013 LHP/OF Mike Ralston caught my eye because of his body size.  We saw him on Tuesday step into the batters box and it made me not only double take, but triple take.  This 6'4" 230 pound transfer has the body type of a big time player at the next level.  He was much more polished on the mound than in the box.  While he is a very solid 2 way guy, pitching was a real treat to see.  He showed the ability to not only power past hitters, but he was also very in control with his 12-6 tight biting CB.  He was still a little raw, but showed a ton of potential.  

Columbine started a 2014 LHP, which seems to be the trend with the teams from Colorado.  As stated before Columbine's Blake Weiman is a tall, lanky pitcher that tended to rely on his CB as opposed to a power FB.  Weiman was not afraid to throw his CB in any count, a rare trait of such a young prospect.  He had the ability to carve hitters up going inside and out with both his CB and FB.  Weiman was not afraid to face any of the hitters in the Sheldon lineup.  He had tons of confidence, even with things got a little shaky.  Weiman had similiar attributes of a young Jamie Moyer.  
 
3/28/2012 12:14:16 PM

Day two of the American and National Divisions of the Coach Bob National Invitational saw a general theme emerge: left handed pitching. Espeically from the state of Colorado, as each of the four teams from the Centennial State that we caught yesterday started a lefty.

Regis Jesuit (CO) vs Columbine (CO)
-Regis Jesuit 2014 LHP Reagan Todd got his first career start for the defending 5A state champions. He pitched well for four innings, sitting 78-82 with his fastball and backing it with a big deep upper 60s/low 70s curveball that topped out at 72. He showed loose arm action and an idea how to pitch, while mixing in an occasional changeup to right handers that registered at 73. He ran out of gas in the fifth after having found his rhythm in the third and fourth innings, exiting with the lead. He would take the loss in the game after the bullpen allowed some inherited runners to score but showed a lot of promise for the future.

-Columbine 2012 LHP Ryan Earnest countered Todd for the Rebels. Earnest threw from a low 3/4 arm slot with short arm action in back and an extended release. He got out front well and threw with a low effort delivery that gave him good command. His fastball sat 77-81 and he used his offspeed stuff liberally, occasionally doubling up on his sweeping 71 mph curveball and 73 mph changeup.

-Columbine 2014 MIF Tyler Mohr hit a two-run Home Run to right field during Columbine's huge fifth inning rally that saw them take  the lead for good. His older brother 2012 C Jaxon Mohr would be the more likely candidate to go yard, with a strong sturdy build and good strength at contact, and while his younger brother had the highlight moment today, Jaxon showed the tools to hit a few Home Runs of his own.

-Regis Jesuit 2013 SS Brody Weiss didn't fill up the box score, but he did show impressive ability. His defensive actions are polished for his age and good arm strength with a quick release. He showed good bat speed and a sound swing, while he it wasn't obvious that he can hit for power, his underlying tools hint at it.

-Columbine's offense got to show their hitting tools quite a bit, as their offensive outburst gave us more looks at each hitter than you'd normally get in one game. 2013 OF Michael Dowling showed off his ability to generate bat speed with an aggressive swing, driving one ball that registered at 92 mph off the bat. 2012 OF Noah Durkin had loose easy swing, but also showed bat speed, hitting one ball that registered at 87.

-The left side of Columbine's infield stood out, as 2013 SS Michael Burns and 2012 3B Jake Fuller each made a positive impression. Fuller's short swing and all fields approach at the plate combined with his arm strength from 3B make him an interesting player. Burns' ability to battle with two strikes was impressive, as was his energy and aggression on the bases, he shows a good feel for the game and carries himself well.

-Regis 2012 1B Jordan Kennedy showed power potential at the plate. He has a loose easy swing that creates loft on the ball, he didn't homer in the game but he did make hard contact several times and showed good leverage in his swing.

-Regis 2014 MIF Max George showed a short compact swing and consistent hard line drive contact, he is a young player to keep an eye out for going forward.

Sheldon (OR) vs. O’Connor (AZ)

This game seemed to go back and forth all game.  Bothteams possessed some quality players and were very similar in terms of ateam.  O’Connor may have had more big names, but no name was bigger thanSheldon’s Brett Nielson.

 

-Sheldon 2013 LHP Brett Nielson was the player to be watched at thegame today.  Nielson was a big bodied lefty that showed a lot of promiseon the mound.  Being from Oregon, he only had one start beforetoday.  He did look like he was shaking a little rust from the tank,working on hitting his spots and locating his CB as opposed to dominatingplayers with his FB as we have seen before.  Nielson topped out at 85 mph(we have seen him higher), but sat more comfortably in the low 80’s.  HisCB showed some very tight break occasionally, but like his FB, seemed a bitinconsistent due to the lack of mound work he has been able to have so far thisseason.  Very few are worried that this kid won’t be the elite prospectthat he is later in the season.

 

-Sheldon 2013 INF Cooper Stiles also impressedtoday.  Stiles played SS for Sheldon, but looks and moves more like a 3Bor 2B at the next level.  He is extremely athletic and looks the part of areal player.  He showed a plus arm in the field and some potential powerat the plate.  He ended up with a few ground balls, but the BS wasdefinitely present.  He seemed to be extremely tuned into the game, mustbe an attribute he picked up from his dad who is currently on the Oregoncoaching staff.  There is a lot of upside to this Junior from Oregon.

 

-Sheldon 2013 OF/LHP Mike Ralston caused a lot of eyes to popwhen he stepped into the batters box.  Ralston is big, athletic, man buildof a kid.  He looked very raw at the plate, but possessed the strengththat could turn into some serious power when he fine tunes his swing. The big lefty will take the mound on Wednesday.

 

-O'Connor 2014 LHP Cameron Ming was a very scrappy lefty that seemed to get a lot ofouts.  When he was on his game, his location was very impressive. Occasionally he left a few out on the plate that turned into hits, but overallwas impressive.  Ming did not overpower any of the Sheldon hitters withhis FB sitting in the high 70’s, but frustrated every hitter in the Sheldonlineup by constantly keeping them off balance.  Ming could be O’Connor’stop pitcher this year so the sky is the limit for this young sophomore.

 

-O'Connor 2012 3B Brendon Erickson  startedat 3B for the Eagles.  He actions in the field made me first take noticeof this senior.  He moved extremely well for his compact build.  Heshowed some solid arm strength as well.  His ability in the field was thenovershadowed with his first AB.  Erickson has some serious pop with hisbat and solid BS.  He has the ability to drive through the ball and gofrom gap to gap.  His present power is above average, but his ability todrive the ball will result in a lot of doubles with the occasional home run

Pine Creek (CO) vs Clackmas (OR)

-Pine Creek 2013 LHP Reagan Biechler showed impressive raw arm speed for Pine Creek. He sat 80-83, and topped out at 85, but his arm speed suggests that once he gets into midseason form he could climb a bit higher. His thin athletic 6-foot-1 155 pound frame projects for increased strength as well. He mixed in a 72 mph changeup and a 68 mph curveball that flashed hard spin.

-Pine Creek 2012 RHP/OF Ryan Warner took an 0-for-3 day, but his outs were some of the loudest of the tournament, his gigantic 6-foot-7 frame gives him tremendous leverage in his swing, allowing him to post a hangtime over six seconds on his first two flyouts, including 6.35 in his first at-bat. Warner is committed to North Carolina State as a RHP and will take the mound on Wednesday.

-Pine Creek 2013 LHP/1B Josh Prater hit a two-run Home Run to left field after flashing the power potential earlier in the game. His swing features big seperation of his upper and lower halves and good extension through the baseball, allowing him to drive it. He also came on in relief late in the game.

-Clackmas 2013 RHP/3B Austin Kelly got the Win in relief, sitting 81-84 and showing a tight breaking ball at 72. He also stood out offensively for his loose easy swing that generates solid bat speed and showed good athleticism at 3B.

-Clackmas 2014 SS Aaron Ahlstrom got the start on the mound and was effective while pitching in the upper 70s (topped at 78) but showed more promise as a position player. He showed good all around athleticism and his body projects well.

-Clackmas 2013 3B/SS Jake Iverson really looks the part at 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds with a well proportioned build. He showed good athleticism defensively in spite of playing away from his natural position (3B) in an early season game, he showed a short compact swing with good strength at contact and the ability to drive the ball to all fields.


Heritage (CO) vs Apollo (AZ)
-In the nightcap at Apollo HS, Heritage made it a clean sweep as every Colorado team we saw sent a lefty to the mound, as they ran 2012 LHP Derek Rohleder out against Apollo. He threw well, keeping Apollo's hitters off-balance and didn't give up much of anything.

-Heritage 2015 MIF Nick Shumpert showed a lot of long term potential. His thick compact build has good present strength and athleticism for his young age, and he showed promising hitting tools. His approach is a little overaggressive and loud at present, but he has the tools to develop into a very good hitter. He showed good all around athleticism and made the plays defensively at 2B. He showed the makings of a very good ballplayer.

-Heritage 2013 SS Aaron Cook has a long loose projectable body, he showed good athleticism defensively and a short compact swing at the plate.

-Heritage 2012 C/1B Kyle Calhoun got the start at 1B so we didn't get a chance to see his receiving skills in action, but he absolutely looks the part at 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds.

Lowell (CA) vs. Hillsboro (OR)

-Hillsboro 2013 Jack Coates sat mid to upper 70’s.  He had a long stiff AA that caused is FBto run in on hitters.  He occasionally flashed an 11-5 CB that was usedmore to set up his hitters rather than being a strikeout pitch.  He tendedto start in on the hands to righties with his FB before throwing his CBoutside.  After getting them off balance, he would come back in on thehands and produce a lot of ground balls.

 

-Hillsboro 2013 Stefanos Panayioutou was a brightspot in the lineup for the solid hitting Hillsboro lineup.  Most of theteam had a similar approach to the plate, being line drive contact, notoverpowering hitters.  Stefanos was one of the rare exceptions.  Hehad the ability to drive the ball with some power in the gaps and looks to havethe ability to hit for some power in the future.

 

-Lowell 2013 Elijah Saunders looked verycomfortable at the SS position.  He feet worked well and had some abilitywith the glove.  He was a raw athlete in the field, but had the makings ofa solid middle infielder at the next level.  Saunders swung from the leftside of the plate and had the same look in the box as on the field.  Heshowed some definite tools with the bat, but was a bit raw at this point in hiscareer.  With more experience on the field, Saunders is one to watch offof the Lowell squad.


 
Tuesday, March 27
Monday, March 26
3/27/2012 1:25:41 AM

The first week of the Coach Bob National Invitational is in the books but the main event is just getting started, as the five divisions get underway today.


Valley Vista (AZ) vs. Ponderosa (CO)


-Valley Vista 2012 LHP/OF Nelson Benjamin threw well again, in his third appearance at the Coach Bob Invitational but finally earned his first Win. Benjamin continued to locate well to both sides of the plate with his low 80s fastball, mixing in a two-plane 1-7 curveball with good depth in the low 70s and an occasional 74-76 mph changeup. Benjamin allowed just one run on three hits over 5 2/3 innings, striking out eight, to three walks. Benjamin also tripled and walked.

-Two players had hits for Ponderosa: 2012 MIF David Clayton and 2013 3B Andrew Paust...

-Paust continued his hot hitting to start the season. After belting two Home Runs in the first three games of the season back in Colorado, he showed that the reduced altitude wouldn't shut off his power supply to the Mustangs lineup. Paust put up the only Ponderosa run with a solo Home Run in the top of the fourth, to cut the defecit to 2-1. He would finish the day 1-for-3, dropping his season average to .538.

-Ponderosa 2012 CIF Colton Crain took an 0-for today, but looked good doing it. He generated bat speed with ease, his swing path was direct to the baseball and his long lean body has a lot of remaining projection. His defensive actions and arm strength suggest he could handle 3B well if Paust weren't already occupying the position.

-Valley Vista 2014 OF Jonathan Jimenez ripped a pair of doubles and drew a walk in a 2-for-2 day, he has consistently shown good contact skills and the ability to use the whole field. Jimenez runs well, having been clocked at 4.09 home to first on a bunt earlier in the tournament, and his physically immature body is likely to add strength.

-Ponderosa 2012 LHP Matt Loutzenhiser didn't post a sparkling line after getting hit late in his outing, but he showed some promise on the mound. He sat 79-82, topping out at 83 with his fastball, 68 on his curveball and a solid changeup at 73. His long loose arm action and slender frame give him some remaining projection, he could make a large developmental leap in college.

Boulder Creek (AZ) vs. West Salem (OR)

·        -2012 Cameron Brendel Anthem, AZ started on thebump and sat 80-83 with his FB.  He flashed a decent 11-5 CB that had somebreak, but he relied more on going inside and out with his FB.  He spottedup very well with his tailing FB.  He was a fierce competitor as he gotinto a few jams, but seemed to come out ahead in the end.

·        -2012 West Tunnell Anthem, AZ showed the mostability out in the field by making play after play.  He had extremelysmooth actions and showed a lot of range by making plays that seemed like surehits.  Tunnell continued to impress all game as his knowledge of the gamewas unbelievable at this age.  He always seemed to have an idea of what todo next and never tried to do too much.

·        -2012 Chase Wagner from Anthem, AZ was a leftythat swung a nice bat at the plate.  Wagner is a smaller build, but hadsome BS and controlled the bat very well.  Not much present power, but hasa swing that will develop into power with added size.  Wagner is a extrabase type hitter because of his ability to drive gaps and speed on the basepaths. 

-2012 Cody Allison from Salem, OR had the task ofshutting down a tough lineup in Boulder Creek.  He didn’t overpower thehitters with his fastball, but had the ability to keep them off balance with anice combination of CH and CB to go with his FB.  Allison threw with avery short AA which caused his fastball to cut in on hitters and produce a lotof ground balls and weak pop ups.

Chaparral (CO) vs Lake Owsego (OR)
-Chaparral made it clear an hour before game time that they came to play, taking a no-nonsense approach to pre-game warmups that carried over well into the game.

-Chaparral 2013 LHP Reily O'Brien went the distance for the Wolverines, throwing strikes to both sides of the plate from a low 3/4 arm action with a sharp angle with a release point coming from the first base side. O'Brien's fastball typically sat in the upper 70s with a minimal effort delivery, though he would reach back to get into the low 80s when needed, he would touch 83 in both the first and final innings. He would use his big sweeping 1-7 low 60s curveball which he showed some feel for liberally, and mixed in an upper 60s changeup (up to 69) on occasion.

-Lake Oswego 2014 RHP/3B Travis Sanders handled the early errors that led to Chaparral getting on the board in the first well. Sanders competed well on the mound, and showed good command and pitchability for his age. He topped out at 84 mph with good tailing life on his fastball and induced a lot of swings & misses with his 76 mph slider with late break. He debuted a solid changeup to the middle of the Chaparral order the second time through at 74 mph. He also showed well at the plate, he is an interesting young player to watch.

-Chaparral 2015 OF Kennan Eaton showed the makings of an interesting prospect. The leadoff hitting center fielder led off the first inning with a hard ground ball that the radar gun picked up at 91 mph off the bat and then ran 4.53 home to first. He handled centerfield well and showed an overall feel for the game that is unusual for a freshman playing in just his second career game. The Wolverines also started another freshman, 2015 MIF Cole Halpin played a good 2B today and has a chance to become a very good player down the road as well.

-Lake Oswego 2012 OF Grant Taylor showed good bat speed and raw hitting tools from the left side, he also looks the part at 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds with good all around athleticism. He didn't show much in our first look, likely a result of a tough lefty-lefty matchup caused by O'Brien's release point, but the tools are there.

-Chaparral 2012 RHP/3B showed good athleticism and body control on the hot corner and raw power at the plate. He saw a steady diet of quality sliders, which limited the damage he would do against Sanders, but his size and athleticism are promising...as is the fact that he is listed as a primary pitcher on the roster.

-Lake Oswego 2012 MIF Tyler Campbell had an impressive strikeout with the bases loaded to end the game. While the end result was disappointing for him, he absolutetly battled Reily O'Brien, spoiling three tough curveballs with 'game over' written all over them. His contact skills and good hitability combined with his thin projectable build make him an interesting player.

-Lake Oswego 2013 OF Jack Anderson showed off a short swing path with good strength at contact, he also runs well for his size.

-Chaparral 2014 SS Paul Green showed good range and body control at shortstop with a quick release. He also showed good bat control, making adjustments from pitch to pitch.


George Washington (CO) vs. Klamath Falls (CA)

·        -2013 Marcus Paschal from Klamath Falls, OR was abig bodied 1B that showed some pop and BS.  Had a very raw, violent swingthat gave him the ability to square one ball over the RF head for adouble. 

·        -2012 Dane Vande Guchte from San Francisco, CAwas the leader of the team at SS.  He moved well in the field flashingsigns of solid middle infielder actions, made a play in the hole that showed hehad some range.  Typical line drive, gap to gap hitter with a solidapproach at the plate.  Top of the lineup type of guy.

·        -2012 Javon Phillips from San Francisco, CA was agood compliment to Guchte up the middle as it seemed they have been playingtogether for years.  Phillips was extremely athletic and possessed someserious speed.  After reaching first, he stole second, third, and finishedoff by getting out of a rundown situation to score.


Elizabeth (CO) vs Denver Christian (CO)

-Denver Christian 2014 MIF/RHP Tate Kastens got the start on the mound, he showed some young athleticism and a quick bat. He lacks physical strength at present, but as he matures and gets stronger, he has a chance to become a good player.

-Elizabeth 2012 3B/RHP Eli McKinney showed a strong swing and put a charge into several balls, using his thick strong build well.

-Denver Christian 2012 MIF Alec Cain is a good athlete who runs the bases well, and a high energy approach to the game. He also showed solid gap pop, which is surprising given his small frame, which comes with the advantage of a small strike zone.

-Elizabeth 2013 MIF Jeff Stephens showed a short compact swing, with contact to all fields and a high energy, aggressive approach to the game.
 
Sunday, March 25
Saturday, March 24
3/26/2012 10:09:27 PM

On Saturday night Valley Vista hosted a doubleheader against Liberty Christian (TX) and West Salem (OR). It was Liberty Christian's final game of the Open Section at the Coach Bob National Invitational, before heading home to resume league play in the Dallas area on Tuesday. It was West Salem's first game, a tuneup prior to the start of the National Division of the Coach Bob National Invitational, and just their second game of the season thanks to poor weather in the northwest.

Valley Vista was a rude host in the opening game, sending Liberty Christian home early with a 12-2 victory after breaking what was previously a 3-2 game wide open with a seven run bottom of the third. Valley Vista got Home Runs from Jensen Puahi and Jonathan Jimenez. Every member of the Monsoon lineup would reach base.

2014 3B/RHP Connor McMann showed promise in a losing effort for the Knights, going 1-for-3 after staying back well on a breaking ball and driving it to the opposite field for one of just two hits, Ethan Luna had the other.

The final game of the night was far more intense. Valley Vista pulled out to a 1-0 lead in the second before West Salem tied it in the third, and pulled ahead with a three run fourth. The Titans would tack on an insurance run in the top of the seventh, which proved to be important when Valley Vista put together a four run rally in the bottom of the frame to force extra innings.

Valley Vista would go on to win it in nine innings on a walk-off single off the bat of OF/LHP Nelson Benjamin. Benjamin would finish the game 2-for-5 with a walk, a double two runs and an RBI at the plate. He also allowed one unearned run over 2 1/3 innings of work on the mound, yielding one walk while striking out four, sitting 81-83 with his fastball.

SS Caleb Wood went 2-for-3 again in the night cap, to finish the day 4-for-6, he would also get the win on the mound with a spotless inning of work in relief, sitting 83-85 with his fastball and mixing it with a 79 mph slider. He also showed much better defensively at shortstop today than he did in our first look at him on Thursday, though his athleticism and defensive tools were impressive in the 12-2 loss to Piedra Vista (NM) in spite of a couple of uncharacteristic errors. Wood was the best prospect of the day, he is committed to Gonzaga and will likely get some draft interest as well.

Sunday is an off day and the National, American, AAA, AA and A Divisions of the Coach Bob National Invitational will get underway on Monday.
 
Friday, March 23
3/24/2012 12:52:07 AM

With a lighter schedule in the Open Section of the Coach Bob National Invitational the action was concentrated at host school Boulder Creek in Anthem, AZ.

The opening game of the morning on Field 1 pitted Edmond Santa Fe (OK), a 2011 6A state semifinalist who is expected to be a legitimate contender for the state title in 2012, against defending back-to-back New Mexico 4A state champions Piedra Vista.

Both teams used wood bats, as New Mexico has required all teams use wood bats in 2012. Piedra Vista has played well in the Coach Bob National Invitational while at a disadvantage swinging wood bats against oponenents with aluminum. Today in Santa Fe's final game of the tourney they agreed to even the playing field.

It was getaway day for the Wolves who left star RHP/Util Ty Hensley out of the lineup and moved their lineup around. Piedra Vista was without one of their top players as well, as C Kholeton Sanchez was forced to sit out a game after a controversial ejection on Thursday for wearing jewelery.

Piedra Vista's lineup continued to impress at the Coach Bob Invitational. Leadoff hitting RF Shane Woodson not only had an impressive diving catch but showed good all-around tools. He posted a 4.38 home to first time this morning, hit a ball that registered at 88 mph off the bat and showed an above average arm in right field.

PV centerfielder Shilo McCall made the highlight throw of the day, showing that his arm is more than playable for center of left, and playable for right field at the next level. He also continued to show off impressive hitting tools, which clearly was noticed by the Edmond Santa Fe coaching staff, who elected to intentionally walk him with first base open at one point, much to the chagrin of the group of MLB scouts clustered along the fence along the first base line to watch the front side of his right handed swing.

2012 MIF Cody Scaggari showed surprising pop for his size, lifting a popup that hung in the air for 6.15 seconds and continued to show solid defensive middle infield actions that should make him a more than serviceable defender at the next level.

Piedra Vista knocked off Edmond Santa Fe, but the Wolves showed off a very interesting prospect in 2014 SS Quin Walbergh. Walbergh ran a 4.24 home to first from the right side for the second time this week (MLB average) to go with a smooth low effort swing and a projectable bat. Walbergh also shows solid and projectable defensive tools beyond his overall athleticism and has a chance to develop into an interesting prospect.

In the middle game of the day Liberty Christian (TX) took on host Boulder Creek (AZ).

In our first look at Liberty Christian several players stood out:

2012 Util Kyle Metzger continued to show the solid, well rounded skill set he's shown at several events with the Houston Banditos in the past and has progressed well, he should be a successful player at the next level.

2013 OF Carson Dowdle is a projectable 6-foot and 165 pounds but already flashes good bat speed and good carry off the bat.

2014 3B/OF Connor McMann showed highly projectable raw tools and a strong athletic body that suggest he also has a bright future.

Liberty Christian took on host Boulder Creek, who played in a doubleheader. The Jaguars will play a total of nine games at the Coach Bob Invitational, plus playoffs. While we've already gotten a good feel for several of their players, we will continue to get a better idea of their capabilities as the tournament rolls along.

The thing that continues to stand out about the Jaguars is the overall feel for the game that 2012 SS West Tunnell continues to show. The kid just knows what he's doing in every phase of the game. Not only does he work the count well, anticipate plays well in the field and get good jumps on the basepaths, the game just seems to come slower to him than it does for everyone else. His quality left handed bat and high level ability at shortstop seems to go a bit underappreciated by MLB scouts, which is something that should make the Baylor coaching staff very happy, as they have a good chance at landing a high caliber player with an obvious passion for the game that suggest he is likely to reach his upside.

In the finale Boulder Creek picked up a sweep of the day's doubleheader, ending the undefeated run of Moorpark (CA). The Musketeers were unable to maintain their dominance after falling short in an intense battle that saw Boulder Creek hang on by the skin of their teeth at 4-2.

Moorpark started 2012 LHP Jordan Guerrrero, a tall skinny, physically immature pitcher who is raw for a SoCal product. But his fast, loose arm suggests that there is a bright future that lies ahead. Guerrero sat 85-88, touching 89 mph with his fastball. He showed confidence in both of his offspeed pitches, a 12-6 curveball that sat 71-73 flashing bite with consistent downer shape, and a 76-78 changeup with tailing life. While he is far less polished than most prospects from Southern California, he is a multi-sport athlete who  has yet to focus on pitching and could make a jump should he choose to focus all of his attention to it. His long loose arm action and tall thin body both project well, and while he may be a player who is best suited going to college and making a jump there, he could also represent a saavy lottery ticket draft pick for a team that likes his potential in the draft come June. We heard reports that he frequently throws harder than he did today, and his arm speed and arm action suggest that there is some validity to these claims, as does the turnout of MLB scouts.

This was PG's first look at Guerrero, and we are interested in following his progress going forward, as he is a player who is likely to make a lot of progress in the future.
 
Thursday, March 22
3/22/2012 4:03:16 PM

One of the most interesting aspects of a true national invitational tournament like Coach Bob is getting to see different teams from all over the country play against one another. When watching Moorpark it really drives home the point of just how competitive the high school baseball in SoCal is.

The Musketeers are a solid team in the Southern California baseball scene, one of the better teams in the Miramonte League this year, and we keep an eye on them for consideration in the Pacific Region Top 25 rankings, which are updated each Friday. But they are not confused with being a powerhouse in their area this year as a junior heavy squad, and have yet to crack the top 25.  And they likely won't do so this year, in spite of being a talented team, which is a testament to just how strong the competition is in California.

Yet their schedule at the Coach Bob Invitational has them consistently matching up with powerhouses of other regions. Yesterday 2013 RHP Sean Barry took a no-hitter into the 6th inning against defending Oklahoma 6A state champion Broken Arrow, settling for a W against previously undefeated Broken Arrow.

Today they shutout back-to-back defending New Mexico 4A state champions Piedra Vista 4-0 in the first game of a doubleheader. In the second game they matched up against Mullen (CO), a senior-laden team that is expected to be one of the better teams in Colorado. As you might expect from the preceeding paragraphs, Moorpark cruised to victory.

Mullen's 2012 shortstop Sam Haggerty, a New Mexico commit, showed well in the loss. His quick fluid defensive actions and strong arm were evident, as was his raw bat speed swinging the bat from the left side. He's a switch hitter who swung the bat from the left side each time at the plate, the raw tools are there though his swing lacks polish, I suspect he is better from the right side as he is a right handed thrower. Either way he's an interesting prospect who has some upside. The other Mullen player who caught my eye in this game was 2012 RF Austin Lundeen, who hit the ball hard all three times up, including a scorching grounder that the radar gun picked up at 92 mph off the bat. He's got a tall slender frame that projects well.

For Moorpark we got a chance to see 2015 C Griffin Mazur make a spot start in the second game of the doubleheader. Mazur is young, but he doesn't play like it. He's a polished receiver behind the plate for his age and has an advanced approach at the plate relatvie to his experience level. He also flashed good bat speed and arm strength behind the plate, he's a player to watch develop over the next few years and has a chance to become a very good catcher. The starter he is stuck behind, 2013 C Taylor Ready showed well with the bat, we'll get to see him defensively tomorrow against Boulder Creek (AZ).

Leadoff hitting CF Bradley Fullerton hammered a ball deep to CF that burned the center fielder, and also had a perfectly placed bunt for a hit. He runs well and covers good ground in the outfield, he ran a 4.22 home-to-first from the right side on the bunt single, in spite of pulling up early as there was no throw, he also was timed at 4.55 on the turn when he hit the double.

The top position prospect of the game was 2013 OF Austin Cole. He is a strong bodied athletic outfielder who would play center on most teams, but Fullerton's speed forced him to a corner spot. His bat speed stood out and he likely drives the ball with authority, hitting a line drive opposite field Home Run to left center today.

RF Jordan Guerrero showed well today also, he has a long lanky projectable body and showed good arm strength in the outfield. At the plate he hit a towering popup that hung in the air for 5.88 seconds, which suggest his bat speed rates as a 45 on the 20-80 scale (just a bit below MLB average) and he ran 4.13 home to first on a bunt from the left side, which is solid for a HS corner outfielder. He is a primary left handed pitcher and we are interested in finding out what he can do on the mound.

Finally, as is standard in SoCal the defensive middle infield play was good, both Anthony Carbone and Blake Chiaramonte showed polished defensive actions that would stand out in most parts of the country.

Moorpark will take on Southwest Region Top 25 staple Boulder Creek (AZ) tomorrow on the Jaguars' home field. Boulder Creek made a deep run in the playoffs in 2011 and returned their star player this year and are playing in the National Game of the Week tonight, but as the results this week suggest that none of that will matter tomorrow. Stay tuned...
 
Wednesday, March 21
3/22/2012 1:28:32 AM

Most states have made the switch from BESR aluminum bats to BBCOR bats in 2012. The lone exceptions are California, which made the switch in 2011, and New Mexico, which now requires teams to play with wood bats.

Two-time defending New Mexico 4A state champion Piedra Vista didn't seem to mind playing with a disadvantage. PV knocked off Ironwood Ridge (AZ), traditionally one of the top teams in southern Arizona, 8-6 in the opening game of a doubleheader.

In their second contest they took on then 10-2 Valley Vista (AZ), on Valley Vista's home field. Valley Vista jumped out to a 1-0 lead, thanks in large part to the athleticism and speed of leadoff hitting SS Caleb Wood, a Gonzaga commit. PV nearly had a run in the top of the second but Valley Vista CF Jensen Puahi (a primary RHP) gunned down the potential first run of the game with a throw on the money from CF.

But a couple of Valley Vista errors with 2 outs in the third left the door open for Piedra Vista, who seized the opportunity to pull ahead, and eventually break the game open. 2012 OF/LHP Nelson Benjamin pitched well for Valley Vista in the early going, but Piedra Vista showed polished hitting ability, making good contact against the lefties' tailing 81-83 mph fastball and above average 12-6 curveball.

Kholeton Sanchez showed unusual speed for a primary catcher, posting home-to-first times of 4.35, 4.41 and 4.45 (with a turn) while playing in his second game of the day after having caught in the first game. 2014 LF Matt Martin showed a highly polished swing for an underclassmen, squaring the ball up to center field for a pair of extra base hits, and while he lacks physicality at his age, his has a fundamentally sound swing and good approach at the plate. RF Shane Woodson showed off his tools at various points in the game as well, he hit a ball that registered at 88 mph off the bat to lead off the game, he gunned down a runner attempting to take 3B on him and continously showed good all around ability.

The star for Piedra Vista is obviously 2012 CF Shilo McCall, an Arkansas commit who draws a crowd of scouts. McCall broke the game open with a two-run double to right center field. He has a well round skillset, with a good arm and athleticism in the outfield, his hit tools is very good and he shows flashes of power. He generates good bat speed in spite of a short low effort swing, while it is geared for line drive contact, he has shown the ability to make adjustments to hit the ball out of the ballpark.

Video of McCall:
 
Tuesday, March 20
3/21/2012 12:53:35 AM

Day 2's schedule was highlighted by the matchup between Broken Arrow (OK) and O'Connor (AZ). The host Panthers are currently ranked No. 1 by the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) and have received consideration for the Southwest Region's Top 25 rankings. Broken Arrow finished the 2011 season ranked No. 2 in the nation after winning their first Oklahoma 6A state championship since 1991 and are currently ranked No. 12 in the Texahoma Region (third highest team in Oklahoma).

Both teams won their most recent games Monday, with Broken Arrow edging out Quartz Hill (CA) 4-3, while O'Connor cruised to a 9-0 victory over Hennessey (OK).

The game lived up to expectations, with a strong pitching matchup. O'Connor sent 2013 RHP Jade Bridley to the mound to counter Broken Arrow's 2013 RHP Trey Cobb.

Both threw well, Bridley used good command and solid pitchability to frustrate the Tigers' lineup with his fastball that sat 80-84, supplementing it with a 74 mph curveball with good depth and 76 mph changeup. Cobb's stuff was very impressive, with his fastball sitting 85-88, touching 89. He works very fast and has very little effort to his delivery. His long loose arm action is quick and projects well, his fastball features good tailing life. Cobb's breaking ball varies between a big sweeping 11-5 curveball in the low 70s to a tight diagonal slider-like shape with late break in the low-mid 70s. Moving forward he would be well served to refine each version of breaking ball into more distinctly different pitches, his ability to impart hard spin on the ball suggests he will be able to do so well.

Cobb pounded the zone with 67% strikes, striking out 8 while walking three and did not allow an extra base hit. LHP/1B Jacob Evans went 2-for-3 with a towering Home Run in the 7th to give Broken Arrow what proved to be a crucial insurance run, after having blasted a high fly ball to the warning track earlier in the game for his only out. Evans is an Oklahoma commit who will take the mound on Thursday night and is a legitimate two-way player.

O'Connor 3B Brendon Erickson showed well with the bat in a losing effort, going 2-for-3 with a Run. His direct swing path and good hand-eye coordination allowed him to square up quality pitching and he uses his present strength well.

Both teams started sophomore shorstops, and both showed well defensively. Broken Arrow's Nick Roark showed quick athletic actions, a low 3/4 whippy arm and solid defensive feel. Roark went 1-for-3 with a single that registered at 88 mph off the bat and showed quick hands in his left handed swing. O'Connor's Greg Saenz has a strong build with more room to fill with a strong arm.


 
Monday, March 19