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Top 100 Countdown: Number 42 Mikie Mahtook (LSU)

MikieMahtookLSU The CBB continues our countdown for the 2010 College Baseball season by checking in on the Top 100 Players in the country. We will be providing one player per day until we reach number 1.

We continue the list today with number 42 in our countdown with LSU sophomore outfielder Mikie Mahtook. He is from Lafayette Louisiana and attended St. Thomas More High School. He had an outstanding senior season a .450 average with 13 home runs, 45 RBI and 25 stolen bases while being named  2008 First Team All-State. He was selected in the 2008 MLB Draft in the 39th round but decided to head to LSU.

He had a solid freshman season as he appeared in 63 games including 49 starts. He accumulated a .316 average with seven homers and 38 RBI. He also stole nine bases in 13 attempts. Mikie was named to the Freshman All-SEC team for his accomplishments. He spent the summer of 2009 in the Prospect League with Danville. He appeared in 18 games after coming to the team late in the summer as he was finishing up the college season with the LSU Tigers. Mahtook had a .200 average one homer and three RBI. Baseball America rated him as the Top Pro Prospect in the Prospect League.

You can check out the rest of our Top 100 by clicking here.

  • waltgreenberg

    Brian, no debate on Mahtook being on this listing, or even being placed at #42; I actually think it’s about right. However, how can a guy like Mahtook be ranked at #42 in a Top 100 countdown of college players, and guys such as Chad Mozingo and Steven Sultzbaugh (just to name two of many, many elite college OFers ad CF prospects) not even make the list? Baseball America might have named Mahtook as the #1 pro prospect in his Summer League, but where’s the relevance since he obviously had a very poor Summer (18 games, .200 AVG, 1 HR, 3 RBIs)? Again, I can understand your ranking if you make it very clear it is a pro prospect listing and not a top College player listing, but unfortunately, that’s not what you’re doing.

  • Mahtook had a better freshman year then Mozingo and even has similar numbers to Mozingo’s sophomore season.

    The same thing is true with Sultzbaugh.

    Mahtook tired with the long college season thus struggling in the summer.

  • waltgreenberg

    Mahtook and Mozingo had very similar Freshman seasons, and while Mozingo’s Sophomore numbers appear similar, keep in mind that Chad not only missed 3+ weeks with a severe ankle injury, but played the entire second half of the season with TWO injured ankles and a fracture in his wrist. He had surgeries this past Summer to both the ligaments in his ankle (similar to Rendon’s injury/surgery) and his wrist. As for Sultzbaugh, you’ve got to be kidding. Sultzbaugh’s 2009 numbers (playing his first year in D-I) was significantly superior to Mahtook’s, despite hitting just .270 for the first two-thirds of the season. From May through the post-season, and continuing in Summer League play and Fall Ball, Sultzbaugh has hit well above .400, with “plus” power…and he’s every bit the defensive CFer that Mahtook is (which is pretty darn exceptional).

    Again, I have no problem whatsoever with Mahtook’s position in your rankings, but given that he is at #42, how the heck can Mozingo and Sultzbaugh not make your Top 100? Similarly, how can Verrick of Baylor be in your Top 60, but Taylor Wall not even make the list? The ONLY plausible explanation is that your ranking is based exclusively on pro projectability and, consequently, is a prospect listing; not a Top college player listing. That continues to be my beef…and you refuse to own up to it.

  • BKMHOXX (Aman Reaka)

    I thin Brian takes a little into account what a players future holds but its not a pro prospect list by any means. I will have a pro prospect list after Christmas and it wont look much like this one. Everyone likes different players for different reasons. thats how “lists” work. And its Verrett.

  • I do take in account pro potential as Aman says but it isn’t the end all of the list.

  • waltgreenberg

    Brian, pro potential is pretty much the “end all” in your rankings. Give me just one example where actual on-field college performance has trumped pro projectability? I dare you. Again, I’d never propose that Taylor Wall make a Top 100 listing, but based on college performance to date as Freshmen, performance this past Summer at The Cape, and improvement during the course of the 2009 season, it is simply unimaginable how Verrett can be in the Top 65 in your listing, yet Wall not even make the list. Similarly, please give me a rationale how Mahtook is ranked #42 (where he rightfully belongs, IMO), but Mozingo and Sultzbaugh don’t crack the Top 100? I’ll bet you any amount you want they either Mozingo or Sultzbaugh– or both– put up superior across the board numbers in 2010 than Mahtook…and that’s taking absoluitely nothing away from Mahtook. All three are 5-tool guys, with exception speed and gold glove caliber defense…and I’d argue that Mozingo and Sultzbaugh have more pop. And I’m simply using Rice guys as I know them best, but I’m sure there are many other elite OFers you’ve left off your list.

    BTW, you may be the only writer following college baseball who would not rank Tyler Holt in the Top 25 going into 2010.

  • waltgreenberg

    One more point, Brian, and I would request a serious response to this one– how is LSU’s Landry in your Top 100 (something I have supported), but Mozingo and Sultzbaugh not make the cut? Based on what exactly?

  • The problem with Rice players is that they play in a top heavy conference in Conference USA. After Rice, East Carolina, and Southern Miss there isn’t much there.

    Back to your Landry comment, Sultzbaugh had a .324 average last year but only hit eight homers with 31 RBI. Landry on the other hand hit .300 with 12 homers and 41 RBI. Landry had 9 stolen bases while Sultzbaugh only had 7. Mozingo had a 319 average with eight homers and 50 RBI while stealing ten bases.

    Big difference though, Landry had a much better lineup hitting in front of him with Blake Dean and Sean Ochinko to name a few. Landry’s numbers would have been much better if he had the chance with runners on base.

    Now I can go after your Tyler Holt comment. Baseball America which you have to consider a strong source for Baseball news correct? They have him listed as the 11th best pro prospect from Team USA. That doesn’t sound like a LOCK for being in their Top 25 in my heart.

    I have actually seen Holt play multiple times and he is a solid player but everyone has some weaknesses and I would take 4-5 players by far over him on Team USA over him.

  • waltgreenberg

    Again, Brian– that fact that BA had Holt as only the 11th best pro prospect on TeamUSA has absolutely NOTHING to do with how he ranks in a 2010 Top college player rankings. All you’re doing with your responses is reinforcing the reality that you’re basing your rankings almost exclusively on pro projectability and NOT actual D-I college performance. Thanks for doing that yet again.

    And your comments about Rice are pathetic and really show your bias. C-USA is ranked by most (most recently by Rivals Baseball) as the #5 conference in college baseball– IMO, on par with the Big West and just behind the Pac-10. To be honest, aside from the 2008 season, the Pac-10 has lagged behind C-USA and the Big West the past five years…and the Big 12 is going to be a joke this year, aside from UT. Also, hate to break this to you, but Rice’s SOS last year was superior to LSU. Just remember, teams play over 50% of their games OOC, and LSU’s OOC schedule is played almost exlusively at home and against largely powderpuff teams. Don’t tell me that doesn’t inflate offensive and pitching statistics.

    Also, to reiterate re. Mozingo, he played two-thirds of last season with two bum ankles (one requiing major ligament surgery over the Summer) and a broken wrist (which also required surgery over the Summer), and also missed 3+ weeks of the season with the ankle injury. The fact that he still put up the very good numbers that he did is pretty telling. As for Sultzbaugh, as I’ve said (and be my guest to look it up yourself), he was struggling to adjust to D-I ball through the first two-thirds of the season– still hitting in the .270s with just 2 HRs through April…but since the beginning of May, through post-season play and Summer League, and now through Fall Practice he hit well over .400, with a significant improvement in power and plate discipline.

    • Mahtook also struggled at the beginning of his freshman season so I can play the same game.

      If you consider Marshall, a rebuilding Central Florida, a struggling Houston program, and Memphis better then the bottom four of the SEC then I can’t help you.

  • D-Jaxx

    Totally agree with Waltgreenburg on this one. You woun’t find the Brunty kid from USM on this list either. though he batted 3rd in the line up and made Freshman All-American. and the CWS. C-USA no gets no respect. As for Tyler Holt top 20 OF in the country, hands down.

    • Holt is a Top 8 outfielder on my list as the list has already been completed.

  • waltgreenberg

    Brian, I suggest you take a little harder look at C-USA. No one said it was on par with the ACC or SEC. Got news for you– neither is the Pac-10, Big 12 or Big West. Yes, UCF, Marshall, Memphis (except for a couple seasons) and UAB have certainly lagged in years past, but don’t be surprised if UCF is one of the surprise teams in the country in 2010, and UAB has been on the rise for the past couple seasons and is expected to continue that trend this year. Houston struggled mightily out of the gates last year, but played very competitively the Second Half and should be back in the post-season this season. Ditto Tulane. Name another conference that has 3 teams play in the Super-regionals last year? Also, nice job totally side-stepping the OOC schedule, which accounts for over 50% of all games played. Downplay Rice all you want, but Rice consistently ranks higher than the elite ACC and SEC teams in overall Strength of Schedule (thanks to the likes of LSU playing a home-baked and woefully powderpuff OOC, while Rice plays the likes of Texas, A&M, Stanford, San Diego, Oral Roberts, UCLA, Baylor, California, et al.). BTW Rice plays 24 C-USA games and 42 OOC games. Bottomline, it is the LSU and Arizona States of the world, who play jokes of OOC schedules, who’s stats are inflated; not Rice. Hey, but keep your bias, as it’s pretty obvious.

    • Why should LSU go on the road? They can draw 7-8k per game.

      LSU has a few easy teams on their home schedule but so does Rice usually.

      LSU plays Pepperdine and Kansas who should be in the NCAA Tourney this upcoming season.

      Rice’s can play more top level out of conference opponents based on the fact the conference is weaker. They need those games to offset the RPI drop they will get from the Marshall’s of the world.

      What is killing Conference USA is the fact that Tulane has really dipped the last few seasons.

  • D-Jaxx

    Well put waltgreenberg!!! this list is a joke.

  • waltgreenberg

    Brian, will you PLEASE quit talking in circles. LSU’s OOC is a laughing stock next to Rice’s; it’s not even remotely close…and if you bothered to take a look, you’d acknowledge it. And again, teams play almost twice as many OOC games as in-conference games, so it’s LSU and UVA and UNC that are the ones padding their schedules. For the umpteenth time, talk all you want about differences in the conferences; however, when taking the ENTIRE schedule into consideration, Rice invariably plays to a tougher SoS than the elite teams in the southeast….and that means it is not Rice’s player stats that are the ones inflated, but those of the LSUs, UNC’s, Kentucky’s, and UVA’s of the world.

    BTW, what are you drinking in saying that Pepperdine and Kansas are going to make the post-season this year? You wanna bet? Kansas was outstanding last year, but waS depleted to the draft and graduation. And Pepp is in the middle of a rebuilding period.

    • Kansas was far from decimated in the 2009 MLB Draft….I think you need to look at that roster again.

      From a KU release:

      KU’s returning players are junior infielder Tony Thompson, who won the Big 12 Triple Crown last season, junior outfielder Brian Heere, who hit .364 with a .459 on-base percentage and junior right-handed pitcher T.J. Walz, who went 8-3 with a 4.70 ERA and recorded 88 strikeouts in 82 1/3 innings.

  • 2009 RPI

    3. UVA
    4. LSU
    5. UNC
    10. Rice


  • Toby Ziegler

    Not taking sides here, but Ping Baseball had Rice 4th in RPI and LSU 6th.

  • waltgreenberg

    And that’s RPI; not Strength of Schedule. Brian, would you like to show the comparable RPI-based SoS or should I…and the ISR-based SoS comparisons are even more dramatic. One has very little credibility who says with a straight face that Rice and LSU (or UNC or UVA or the majority of southeastern powers) play to comparable OOC schedules. And though it is true that LSU, UNC and UVA play far tougher in-conference schedules, the FACT remains that when taking the entire schedule into consideration, Rice invariably plays to a tougher SoS, and usually by a significant margin. To discount Rice plahyers’ performace and stats vis-a-vis an LSU based on the claim that Rice plays in C-USA is absurd given the comparable overall SoS. So please don’t claim a lack of bias on your part. Any college baseball fan who has Landry ranked ahead of Mozingo and Sultzbaugh as OFers entering the 2010 season is either biased or not very knowledgeable (and, BTW, I like Landry a lot, and have commented in his support previously).

    One other point, Brian– can we please stop using RPI as the be all to end all in comparing teams and conferences as even the most loyal southeastern college baseball fan would acknowledge there are serious flaws in the RPI algorithm that greatly favors southeastern teams. The bottom 4 – 5 teams in the SEC have grossly inflated RPIs simply because they play in the SEC. It’s almost impossible, based on the RPI alogorithm, for an SEC team to have an RPI below 100, regardless to how lousy they are….and that, in turn, inflates the RPI of the better SEC teams.

  • waltgreenberg

    And as for Kansas’ 2010 prospects, they may very well be bringing back their two best offensive players, but they did lose considerable offensive firepower nonetheless, and I seriously question one’s post-season prospects when their best returning pitching threw to a 4.70 ERA last season. That is not particularly good. Having said that, I’ll acknowledge that aside from Texas, the Big 12 teams are all in rebuilding mode in 2010, and consequently, several will inevitably make the post-season.

  • D-Jaxx

    Argument over… Waltgreenberg wins hands down.. There is a bias with this list. Smple as that. If there any doubt check the stats between the Brunty kid from USM and the LSU kid… Argument Over!!!!

  • I have seen both Brunty and Mahtook in person multiple times. Mahtook wins hands down!

    Remember, you can ask two different people for their opinions on players and you will get two different answers.

  • waltgreenberg

    Yes, Mahtook gets the edge over Brunty. However, the question remains how the heck is Landry on this listing and NOT Brunty, Mozingo or Sultzbaugh? Based on what exactly? Also, keep in mind that Landry’s stats last year– though worse than the above-mentioned trio– were actually and undeniably inflated since the majority of his ABs were during OOC games– almost all at home and almost all against teams with RPIs above 100.

  • D-Jaxx

    Brian you are right about difference of opinions. You say you seen these players multiple times, which I don’t doubt. I have had the pleasure of watching both players sence they where 12 years old, along with the Dugas kid who plays for Alabama. Dugas and Mahtook playing for the Cagun Sluggers and the Brunty kid playing for the Pensacola Lightning. Great games, mostly one sided. P-Cola wins. Its great that all three of them are doing great in College Baseball. USM and LSU Play in the Wally Poniffe Cassic this year, which will be a great game to catch. Brunty stats speak for them self. Great debate thou. Thats why I love College Baseball. Everybodys got an opinion.

  • BKMHOXX (Aman Reaka)

    Walt. Dont talk about things that you dont know much about.
    Kansas has a very legitimate chance to be in the top 3 in the Big 12 this year.
    They are very talented and very deep. This isnt the same ol Kansas baseball anymore.
    If Kansas isnt in the post-season, it will be a huge failure.

  • waltgreenberg

    Kansas has a very good chance of being in the Top 3 in the Big 12 in 2010 precisely because the Big 12 is expected to have a very down year, with only Texas a likely Top 20 team (and the Longhorns will almost assuredly be consensus preseason Top 3 in the polls), and A&M the only other team with a realistic shot at a year-ending Top 25 ranking. Aside from Kansas, virtually everyone else in the conference got decimated by the draft and will be in serious rebuilding mode.

  • BKMHOXX (Aman Reaka)

    We will find out real fast Walt. I think Kansas would be near the top of the conference even if the league wasnt going to be down. Kansas plays Wichita St., Arkansas and 3 games at LSU before the Big 12 will start. So we will know how good they have a chance to be. I say they have a shot at Omaha.

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