Draft : : State Preview
Monday, May 21, 2012

State Preview: South Dakota

David Rawnsley        
Photo: Augustana

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.

Contributing: Allan Simpson

South Dakota State-by-State List
2011 South Dakota Overview

South Dakota Overview:
Tiny Augustana College Has Been Destination School For Scouts

South Dakota received unusually-thorough scouting attention in 2011, mostly due to the presence of South Dakota State righthander Blake Treinen and his mid-90s fastball.

For a while, it looked like Treinen might challenge the record for the highest-draft pick ever from the state, set by former South Dakota State righthander Wade Adamson, a fourth-rounder in 1978. In the end, Treinen had to settle for a 7th
-round call from the Oakland A’s. He is currently pitching well in the A’s system in the High-A California League (3-4, 4.14, 52 IP, 50 SO).

Most of the conversation about baseball in South Dakota in 2010 and 2011 centered around South Dakota State, the state’s lone Division I program. The Jackrabbits posted the best records in the school’s brief history in going 39-21 and 37-20 in back-to-back years, and narrowly missed landing the Summit Conference’s automatic berth in the NCAA tournament, losing to Oral Roberts in the league tournament finals both years. The Jackrabbits haven't been as competitive this year after losing Treinen to the draft and a number of seniors to graduation, and went just 18-32 while missing out on the Summit League playoffs altogether.

In South Dakota State’s absence, Division II Augustana (32-21) became the state’s most-heavily scouted college, and boasts the state’s two best prospects in lefthander Ben Heairet and righthander Derek Hansen, both of whom could be late-round drafts.

A year after righthander Tanner Chleborad, now an outstanding freshman at Washington State, was taken in the 24th
 round, the South Dakota high-school ranks are unlikely to contribute to the 2012 draft. The top high-school talent in the state is Washington High junior righthander Jon Hander, who will be showcasing his stuff at the 2012 Perfect Game National Showcase in mid-June. Hander is the younger brother of former South Dakota prep standout Ryan Hander, who was drafted in the 39th round by the Dodgers in 2009 and is currently at the University of Nebraska.

South Dakota in a nutshell:

College lefthanders.
WEAKNESS: High-school talent.
OVERALL RATING (1-to-5 scale): 2.

South Dakota State.
BEST HIGH SCHOOL TEAM: Roosevelt HS, Sioux Falls.

BEST OUT-OF-STATE PROSPECT, South Dakota Connection:
Ryan Hander, rhp, University of Nebraska (Attended high school in Sioux Falls).
Top 2013 Prospect: Jon Hander, rhp, Washington HS, Sioux Falls.
Top 2014 Prospect: Adam Bray, rhp, South Dakota State University.


Draft History:
Wade Adamson, rhp, South Dakota State University (1978, Reds/4th round).
2006 Draft: Ben Jukich, lhp, Dakota Wesleyan University (Athletics/13th round).
2007 Draft: Jake Rogers, ss, South Dakota State University (Nationals/22nd round).
2008 Draft: Craig Parry, of, South Dakota State University (Pirates/50th round).
2009 Draft: Cale Thielbar, lhp, South Dakota State University (Brewers/18th round).
2010 Draft: Blake Treinen, rhp, South Dakota State University (Marlins/23rd round).
2011 Draft: Blake Treinen, rhp, South Dakota State University (A’s/7th round).


College Players Drafted/Signed:
High School Players Drafted/Signed: 1/0


Best Athlete:
 Hansen, rhp/3b, Augustana College.
Best Hitter: Derek Hansen, rhp/3b, Augustana College.
Best Power: David Borchardt, of, Augustana College.
Best Speed: Eric Cain, ss, South Dakota State University.
Best Defender: Eric Cain, ss, South Dakota State University.
Best Velocity: Ben Heairet, lhp, Augustana College.
Best Breaking Stuff: Derek Hansen, rhp/3b, Augustana College
Best Command: Ethan Opsahl, lhp, Dakota Wesleyan University.




DEREK HANSEN, rhp/3b, Augustana College (Jr.)
Righthander/outfielder Kye Winter was supposed to be the top two-way standout on the Augustana roster this season after he stood out in the Northwoods League last summer, and was named that circuit’s 36th-best prospect by Perfect Game. But Winter was injured five games into the 2012 season and missed the rest of the spring; Hansen emerged in his absence as one of the top dual-purpose players in Division II baseball. He went 7-4, 1.60 with 103 strikeouts in only 67 innings on the hill and also hit .363-7-37, while playing first base. Hansen doesn’t possess Winter’s low-90s velocity, but works consistently in the upper-80s with a very good slider that he learned to command better this year. Hansen didn’t pitch in high school and only began doing so after enrolling at Augustana, when the team’s coaching staff noted his above-average arm strength across the diamond from third base.

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