College Baseball Daily continues our countdown to the start of the 2014 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 12 on our countdown is LSU junior RHP Aaron Nola. The 6’1 right-handed pitcher from Baton Rouge, Louisiana was selected in the 22nd round by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2011.
During his freshman season, Nola made 19 appearances for the Tigers including 16 starts. He posted a 7-4 record with an ERA of 3.61. In his 89.2 innings pitched Nola struck out 89 while walking just seven—the fewest amount of walks allowed in the SEC.
His success earned him a variety of awards including being named to the Freshman All-SEC team, NCAA Regional All-Tournament Team, and Freshman All-American honors.
As a sophomore, he started 17 games on the mound, posting a 12-1 mark and a 1.57 ERA in 126 innings with 18 walks and 122 strikeouts. He suffered his only loss of the season to UCLA in the College World Series (June 16), allowing just two unearned runs on five hits in eight innings with one walk and five strikeouts. He was named a Collegiate Baseball magazine First-Team All-American, 2013 SEC Pitcher of the Year by the league coaches, and National Pitcher of the Year from the College Baseball Hall of Fame.
From a scouting perspective, Nola is a very solid pitching prospect. His repertoire is highlighted by a fastball that sits in the low 90s and a fantastic changeup. Most impressive however, is his ability to consistently throw strikes. To walk just seven in nearly 90 innings pitched, while striking out 89 says a great deal about the type of pitcher that Nola is. He now is sitting in the Friday night starter roll for LSU which puts him center stage in one of the best environments in college baseball, where he is one of the top players to watch for in 2013.
You can check out the rest of the Top 100 by clicking here.