In the weeks leading up to the draft, Perfect Game will be providing a detailed overview of each state in the U.S., including the District of Columbia, as well as Canada and Puerto Rico. These overviews will list the state's strengths, weaknesses and the players with the best tools, as well as providing scouting reports on all Group 1 and 2 players as ranked in Perfect Game's state-by-state scouting lists.
Texas State-by-State List
2011 Texas Overview
Obvious Talents Highlight Texas Crop
on its sheer size, as well as an impressive track record for
producing talent, Texas is almost certain to have its share of
first-round draft candidates each year. It has three such consensus
selections for the 2012 draft in Texas A&M righthander Michael
Wacha and outfielder Tyler Naquin at the college level, and slugging
Corpus Christi outfielder Courtney Hawkins in the high-school ranks.
position players—Hawkins, outfielder Nick Williams and shortstop
C.J. Hinojosa—were the cream of the prep crop entering the 2012
season, and all three were members of the Perfect Game All-American
Classic last August. While Hawkins continues to secure his placement
on team's draft boards, Hinojosa suffered a season-ending left
shoulder injury, and Williams is an enigmatic yet immensely talented
no one has emerged as a clear-cut favorite from the state’s
high-school pitching crop, long a staple of Texas baseball, there are
some promising arms to choose from. Righthander Jeremy Kivel looked
liked he might be the best arm of the bunch, but saw his season come
to a premature end in early March when he injured his knee while
playing in the outfield. Two more righthanders, Mitchell Traver and
Tyler Gonzales, will now likely vie for the honor of being the first
prep pitcher drafted. The 6-foot-7 Traver has flashed considerable
potential with his combination of size and velocity, while Gonzales
has a devastating fastball/slider combination.
injuries have been prevalent at the college level, particularly those
that took down two prominent University of Texas pitchers, lefthander
Sam Stafford and righthander Josh Urban, along with Houston Baptist
righthander Robbie Buller, prior to the start of the season. All had
projected to go in the first 10 rounds, especially Stafford, an
unsigned second-round pick of the New York Yankees in the 2011 draft.
by Texas A&M and its twin first-round candidates, the college
ranks should still fare well in the draft this year. But there has
been a noticeable changing of the guard among member teams in the Big
12 Conference. Texas has historically been the state’s best and
most-talented college team, but the Longhorns were significantly
handicapped without the services of both Stafford and Urban, and have
been upstaged by surprising Baylor, which sported an improbable 18-0
record in conference play entering May. First baseman Max Muncy is
the Bears’ only probable top-5 round draft candidate, but the team
is deep in talented veteran players and should impact the draft in
later rounds. The Longhorns also projects to have maybe just a single
player, lefthander Hoby Milner, taken in the top 10 rounds.
there is an area of the draft that has been a bright spot for Texas,
and possibly even exceeded expectations, it’s the state’s
junior-college pitching crop. As many as eight or nine JC arms could
go in the first 10 rounds—the most notable of whom might end up
being Howard College righthander Reid Scoggins, who wasn’t even
expected to be a premium draft early in the season, but may leapfrog
every JC pitcher on the board by the time the draft unfolds on the
strength of a fastball that has routinely reached triple digits.
in a nutshell:
Variety and depth of college prospects, power arms.
(1-to-5 scale): 3.
HIGH SCHOOL TEAM:
Calallen HS, Corpus Christi.
ON THE RISE: Reid Scoggins, rhp, Howard JC. Scoggins
was hardly even on the scouting map a month ago, but has been one of
the hottest pitching commodities in the country with cross-checkers
rushing in to get a look at his 100-mph fastball. The Dallas native
missed the 2011 season while recuperating from Tommy John surgery,
and the Howard College coaching staff took the opportunity during his
rehab to make some major delivery adjustments. The result has been
two-fold: a dramatic increase in velocity that has seen Scroggins
routinely reach triple digits out of the bullpen, and significantly
better command. Scoggins is not a polished arm by any means, but his
kind of velocity could lead to his being drafted as high as the
supplemental first round.
CARD: Nick Williams, of, Ball HS, Galveston.
Williams’ raw physical tools and overall athletic profile have
drawn comparisons to some of the most-talented baseball players of
this generation, including Ken Griffey Jr., but his play this spring
has rarely reflected his tools. Given his immense talent he still
could be taken in the first or second round by a team that has done
its homework and isn't willing to let his talent slide past them, but
his eventual draft position remains up in the air.
OUT-OF-STATE PROSPECT, Texas Connection:
Brady Rodgers, rhp, Arizona State University (Attended high school in
Austin Kubitza, rhp, Rice University.
John Curtiss, rhp, University of Texas
David Clyde, lhp, Westchester HS, Houston (1973, Rangers/1st round, 1st pick); Matt Anderson, rhp, Rice University (1997, Tigers/1st round, 1st pick).
Lincoln, rhp, University of Houston (Pirates/1st round, 4th pick).
Ahrens, ss, Memorial HS, Houston (Blue Jays/1st round, 16th pick).
Andrew Cashner, rhp, Texas Christian University (Cubs/1st round, 19th pick).
Purke, lhp, Klein HS (Rangers/1st round, 14th pick).
Tallion, rhp, The Woodlands HS (Pirates/1st round, 2nd pick).
Rendon, 3b, Rice University (Nationals/1st round, 6th pick).
College Players Drafted/Signed: 34/17.
School Players Drafted/Signed:
Williams, of, Ball HS, Galveston.
Tyler Naquin, of, Texas A&M University.
Courtney Hawkins, of, Carroll HS, Corpus Christi.
Austin Schotts, ss, Centennial HS, Frisco.
Tyler Naquin, of, Texas A&M University.
Stephen Johnson, rhp, St. Edwards University; Reid Scoggins, rhp,
Matt Reckling, rhp, Rice University.
Michael Wacha, rhp, Texas A&M University.
PROSPECTS, GROUPS ONE and TWO
GROUP ONE (Projected
ELITE-Round Draft / Rounds 1-3)
1. MICHAEL WACHA,
rhp, Texas A&M University (Jr.)
The 6-foot-6, 210-pound
Wacha has been extraordinarily consistent throughout his college
career, and moved into the month of May with a 6-0, 2.22 record as a
junior, stretching his three-year won-loss mark to 24-6. In 77
innings this season, he has walked just 14 while striking out 78.
There was some talk early in the spring of Wacha getting serious
interest at the very top of the draft, specifically from the
Minnesota Twins at No. 2, but that talk seems to have subsided and a
spot from 8 to 12 seems more likely. Wacha has a heavy, sinking
fastball in the 92-94 mph-range, and will reach back for a little
extra when he needs it. His most-advanced pitch is a low-80s changeup
because he can throw it with relatively the same arm speed and from
the same release point as his fastball, and still get the same heavy,
sinking life at the plate. He throws both a slider and a curve, but
not with any frequency and without distinctive quality. He doesn’t
really need either pitch at the college level with a plus
fastball/double-plus changeup combination, along with outstanding
command, but will need to improve in this area professionally.
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