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College  | Story  | 2/21/2018

Quick Take: South Florida

Vincent Cervino     
Photo: USF Athletics

Opening day heat from McClanahan | Baum, Tar Heels even series
UNC wins in extras to take series
Perfect Game College Player Database

During the season Perfect Game scouts will be traveling to some of the top series to watch the very best players in college baseball. Those observations, captured with both written notes and video, will be shared in the College Player Database as linked above, notes that can also be accessed on the players' individual PG profile pages. Throughout the season select reports will be shared in feature format to promote the players, the teams and college baseball as a whole.

South Florida Bulls

What Happened: The Bulls took game one of the series while dropping the next two, including the rubber match in extras, against one of the top teams in the nation in North Carolina. Shane McClanahan was fantastic on Friday night, but the starting pitching didn’t help the Bulls the rest of the way as Peter Strzelecki and Colin Sullivan gave up a combined 12 earned runs over the next two games as the Bulls start 1-2 on the year.

Carrying Tool: The athleticism of this ball club from top to bottom is impressive. The outfield alone of Chris Chatfield, Garrett Zech, and Duke Stunkel, Jr. is freakishly athletic with perhaps all of them being at least above average runners. Coco Montes, David Villar, and transfer Alec Wisely are talented enough to play any infield position and nearly every batter 1-9 can run or at least be a threat on the bases.

Concerns: The starting pitching had a rough go of it and they are going to have to step up if this team wants to go to a Regional. Strzelecki got hit hard early in the game on Saturday and Sullivan was in and out of trouble on Sunday. I think true freshman Graham Hoffman, who threw an inning on Sunday, ends up in the rotation sooner rather than later as he features lots of downhill plane and a 90-93 mph fastball.

Best Player on the Field: Shane McClanahan had the filthiest stuff in college baseball on Friday night and showed exactly why he’s a likely premium first rounder come June. McClanahan struck out 11 in six innings and fired his fastball up to 99 mph while showing plus secondaries as well. He’ll have to hone his command, as he walked five and hit another, but the talent is undeniable.

Fearless Forecast: Look for the Bulls make a run in the American Athletic Conference tournament and we'll see where that takes them. South Florida may not have the depth to be one of the premier teams all season long, but they sure have enough star power to make a deep run led by a few star players. McClanahan might be the best pitcher in college baseball while Chatfield is capable of going on a tear for a few games in a row. Lefthander Andrew Perez made a big name for himself in the Regionals last season while the athleticism and firepower of this squad has big ceiling potential.

Database Player Reports (8):

Chris Chatfield
Graham Hoffman
Shane McClanahan
Andrew Perez
Collin Sullivan
David Villar
Alec Wisely
Garrett Zech

Prospect Spotlight:  Chris Chatfield, OF

Boasting a bevy of intriguing tools, former PG All-American Chris Chatfield is an enigmatic prospect in that there are so many things to like about the profile with a few causes for concern as well. One thing is for sure is that Chatfield is a superb athlete with a 6-foot-3 and 213-pound frame and lots of twitch and strength. 

The frame exudes strength and athleticism, and with that comes Chatfield's prodigious raw power. He has 70 raw power that he showed well throughout BP and even in game at times. It plays at less than 70 in game due to Chatfield's tendency to swing and miss. He can handle fastballs very well however he will struggle with off-speed pitches from time to time that cause him to strikeout at a high clip like he did a year ago. Regardless, the power potential is too great to ignore and still manages to impress scouts. Chatfield got into one during the end of Saturday's game against North Carolina as he took a 93 mph fastball from Joey Lancellotti way deep and over the scoreboard to give you a taste of the raw strength. Chatfield creates such jump off the barrel with tremendous impact strength that it's hard to ignore. 

Chatfield also has some speed, timed at 4.3 seconds from home to first from the left side, and is very agile both on the basepaths and in the outfield where he started on Friday and Sunday. He played left field for South Florida and that's likely where he profiles as a professional. The hit tool is the big question mark for Chatfield, as he has already shown to be a plus athlete with plus-plus raw power and present speed as well. The swing-and-miss concerns are real, however the tools are so loud that it wouldn't be a surprise to see a team take Chatfield sooner rather than later in June's draft.