We continue the list today with number 54 in our countdown with Georgia Tech junior shortstop Derek Dietrich. He is from Parma Ohio and attended St. Ignatius (Jesuit Prep) High School where he was a four-year letterwinner. He had a career high school batting average of .425 with 18 homers and 125 RBI. He received several awards during his high school career including being named the Ohio Gatorade Player of the Year, No. 1 draft prospect for Ohio, and the Perfect Game Ohio Player of the Year in 2007. He was named a high school All-American by Baseball America and Louisville Slugger. He was selected in the third round of the 2007 MLB Draft by the Houston Astros but could not come to terms with them as he headed south to play for Danny Hall at Georgia Tech.
Dietrich made a direct impact on the Georgia Tech lineup as a freshman in 2008 as he started every single game at shortstop. He finished his freshman campaign with a .332 average with 14 homers and a team high 66 RBI. He won several awards including being named National Freshman of the Year by Rivals.com and National Freshman Hitter of the Year by the NCBWA. He was named a Freshman First- Team All-American by Rivals.com, Collegiate Baseball, and NCBWA while Baseball American named him Second-Team All-American. He played the summer of 2008 with the USA Collegiate National Team where he played in 20 games starting in 15 of them. He accumulated a .259 average with a homer and five RBI as the team went a perfect 24-0.
Dietrich returned and had a solid sophomore season which saw him start all 58 games at shortstop for the second straight season. He finished the year with a batting average of .311 with ten homers and 61 RBI. He finished tied for 10th in the conference with 61 runs scored on the year. After the season was over, he made the trip to Cape Cod to take part in the Cape Cod Baseball League where he played with the Wareham Gatemen. He continued to struggle with the wood bat as he hit .211 with three homers and ten RBI.
Dietrich’s biggest issue is his lack of range at shortstop according to many scouts who project him as an outfielder. He played some third base with Team USA in the summer of 2008 and played seven games at second and one at third with Wareham in 2009.
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