College Baseball Daily continues our countdown to the start of the 2013 college baseball season by checking in on the Top 100 Players in the country. We will be adding players day-by-day until we get to number one!
Number 40 on our Top 100 Countdown is Marshall’s Aaron Blair. The 6’5 right-handed pitcher from Las Vegas, Nevada was selected in the 21st round by the Houston Astros in 2010.
As a freshman, Blair appeared in 12 games for the Thundering Herd, seven of which were starts. He went 2-3 in 36.1 innings with 34 strikeouts for a team-best ERA of .272. His success earned him a place on the Conference USA All-Freshman Team. During his sophomores season he made 14 appearances, all of which were starts. He posted an ERA of 3.98 while striking out 82 batters in comparison to just 28 walks.
Following the 2012 season, Blair spent the summer in Cape Cod pitching for the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox. Blair was stellar in the Cape as he went 8-0 for the Red Sox (including post season play), posting an ERA of just 1.05. In his 51.1 innings pitched, Blair struck out 60 batters.
From a scouting perspective, Blair has very solid command of all of his pitches. His repertoire is highlighted by his fastball that sits in the low 90s touching at about 94, along with a strong change-up and a good curveball. The variety he brings the table really allows him to keep batters guessing since he is more than capable of throwing any of his pitches in any count. This really allows him to strikeout talented batters on the regular. In addition to his impressive strikeout ability and great variety, Blair also has shown consistent improvement on all of his pitches, which makes it easy to believe that he will only continue to improve with time. With some scouts believing that he has the talent to be a first-rounder in the 2013 draft, Blair is one of the top players to watch for this season.