University of Texas baseball coach Augie Garrido announced the addition of a 10th player to the 2008-09 signing class as Robbie Grossman’s National Letter of Intent was certified on Thursday morning.”Robbie is considered one of the top outfielders in the nation,” associate head coach and recruiting coordinator Tommy Harmon said. “He’s a switch-hitter, has good speed and good power, and is someone that should be able to contribute early.”
Grossman was a member of the USA Baseball Junior National Team in 2007. He hit .450 with a team-high eight RBI in six games for Team USA at the COPABE “AAA” Pan American Junior Championships, helping the team earn a bronze medal and earn a berth in the 2008 International Baseball Federation “AAA” World Championships.
The Cypress, Texas, product is ranked as the No. 3 recruit in the state of Texas by Inside Prep Baseball. Grossman’s signing gives Texas eight of the top 25 recruits from the state according to Inside Prep Baseball, including the top three overall and five of the top 10.
Grossman is enjoying a stellar prep career, including an outstanding defensive performance and a single in the Aflac All-American High School Baseball Classic in San Diego last August. Grossman earned his second straight all-district honor and was the MVP of the Region 3 Championship series for Cypress Fairbanks High School, winners of the 2007 Class 5A Texas State Baseball Championship. He batted .415 with four home runs, 19 RBI and 16 stolen bases for the Bobcats as a junior to earn Texas High School Coaches Association third-team all-state recognition. Other honors from his junior season include UIL All-Tournament Team 5A and second-team All-Houston.
In terms of positions included in the signing class for the 2008-09 season, there are five pitchers, four position players and one two-way performer.
We are starting up with our previews of the 2008 season. We have broken down the top five pitchers in the country. Stay tuned for more previews of the upcoming season as the season gets closer.
Aaron Crow, Jr. Missouri
Crow was named the top pitching prospect in the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League this summer. Crow has a mid-90’s fastball with a plus slider and a solid cutter. Crow went 9-4 with a 3.59 last season but got bombed in the NCAA Tournament by Louisville as he let up seven runs in 2/3 of an inning.
Jacob Thompson, Jr. Virginia
Thompson had a breakout season in 2007 where he led the Virginia Cavaliers to the NCAA Tournament. He had a perfect 11-0 record with a 1.50 ERA. Thompson has a low 90’s fastball with downward action on it with a solid curveball. Thompson pitched over the summer for the USA National Team where he got a chance to pitch in the Pan Am Games. He went 1-2 with a 1.27 ERA in 21.1 innings. He was shutdown after the Pan-Am Games to rest his arm for the 2008 season.
Brian Matusz, Jr. San Diego
Matusz is a 6’4 left handed power pitcher for the University of San Diego baseball program. In 2007, He led the Toreros to the number 1 seed in the San Diego regional with a 10-3 record with a 2.85 ERA. He also struck out 163 strikeouts in 123 innings. He pitched for the USA National Team this summer where he compiled a 3-1 record with a 1.33 ERA in four starts. He was also shut down for the summer after the Pan-Am Games to rest his arm.
Kyle Gibson, So. Missouri
Gibson is a 6’5 right handed sinker ball pitcher who was named the number 3 overall prospect in the Cape Cod League by Baseball America and number 9 by Perfect Game. He lead the Missouri Tigers with help from Aaron Crow to the NCAA Tournament as he had a 8-3 record with a 4.12 ERA as he served as the closer with seven saves. He is expected to make the move to the rotation in 2008 and give the Tigers two legitimate aces on the staff.
Ryan Perry, Jr. Arizona
Perry dazzled scouts in the Cape Cod League with a mid-90’s fastball which hit 97 on some guns over the summer. He struggled in 2007 with the Arizona Wildcats as he went 0-2 with a 6.35 ERA. Perry was recovering from a January 2007 accident when he crashed his motorcycle going over 80 MPH without a helmet on which he walked away with a broken non-throwing arm. Perry pitched in 18 games coming out of the bullpen while picking up four saves. His record for the CCBL season was only 1-2 with a 4.15 ERA. He is expected to become an impact player in the Pac-10 for the 2008 season.
The College Baseball Blog would like to thank Cape Prospects for providing the videos for some of the pitchers.
Doug Kroll of CSTV has released his top 25 poll based on Fall practices. It’s worth checking out. Arizona State is listed as the top team. We will see about that.
Click here for the article.
Our favorite Rivals writer Kendall Rogers checks in with a mailbag column talking about some of the challenges Vanderbilt is facing with the loss of David Price, a preview of Arizona State, the future of Memphis baseball, and finally Texas AM utility player Blake Stouffer chances of winning National Player of the Year. The article is available here.
Baseball America has released their annual top 30 prospects from the Cape Cod League. Aaron Crow of Missouri leads the rankings after having an impressive summer with a 0.67 ERA and picking up the Top prospect award from MLB scouts. The top position player is Yonder Alonso of Miami after hitting .338 with an on-base percentage of .468. The full list is available here.
Kendall Rogers, Rivals.com’s baseball guru, broke down his top 10 players to return to school despite being drafted.
1. Texas OF Kyle Russell
2. Texas A&M Utility Guy Blake Stouffer
3. Vanderbilt OF Dominic De la Osa
4. Rice Closer Cole St. Clair
5. Creighton switch-pitcher Pat Venditte
6. UGA Closer Josh Fields
7. ASU Starter Josh Satow
8. USC Catcher Phil Disher
9. OKState 3B Matt Hague
10. Auburn OF Mike Bianucci
This writer would probably have flipped a couple of these guys around. It’s hard to argue with Russell Stouffer and De la Osa; however, a healthy Cole St. Clair could be the difference between Rice swapping a C-USA ring for a College World Series ring.
And I’m happy to see Venditte return. I’ve not seen him pitch yet, but he’s the guy who will throw lefty to one batter and righty to the next.
Read Kendall’s breakdown here.
The MLB Draft deadline was last week so many NCAA teams are releasing their recruits for the 2008 season. We have compiled a list below of press releases from Monday.
Texas A&M (Thanks to Aggiebaseball.net)
Doug Kroll of CSTV checks in with an article about the top power hitters for the 2008 season. He discusses Pedro Alvarez, Justin Smoak, Kyle Russell to just name a few. It is an excellent read and can be found here.
The Cape Cod Baseball League playoffs start on Friday when Chatham visits Yarmouth-Dennis in the Eastern Division playoff series.
The Chatham A’s are led by Allan Dykstra (Wake Forest) who hit .308 this summer with five homers and 31 RBI in 40 games. Tom Milone (Southern Cal) leads the team with a 6-1 record on the mound with a 2.92 ERA. Milone is also tied with Terry Doyle of YD for the league lead in wins. Bryan Shaw (Long Beach State) has seven saves which leads the team.
The Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox enter the playoffs with the best regular season record after winning the 2006 title. They went 31-12-1 in 2007 and according to Perfect Game are one of the top Summer League teams in the nation. are led by one of the top prospects in the CCBL in Gordon Beckham (Georgia). He hit .284 on the year with nine homers and 35 RBI in 42 games. Jason Castro (Stanford) finished second in the league in hitting with a .341 average. Terry Doyle (Boston College) is tied for the league lead with six victories and a 2.35 ERA. Eddie Burns (Georgia Tech) has also had a strong summer with a 5-1 mark with a 2.86 ERA. Nick Cassavechia (Baylor) has 11 saves which is top in the league.
Friday: Chatham at Yarmouth Dennis at 3 pm
Saturday: Yarmouth-Dennis at Chatham at 7 pm
Sunday (if necessary): Chatham at Yarmouth-Dennis at 3 pm
The College Baseball Blog predicts that Yarmouth-Dennis wins the series in two games.
The entire playoffs will be webcasted for free through Leaguestream. The games can be accessed by clicking here.
Team USA was one-hit by Japanese pitcher Yuske Iwamato but picked up a 1-0 victory on the first day of the World Port Tournament. As the game entered the ninth inning, Team USA had no hits off of Iwamato but Jordan Danks (Texas) got a lead-off walk. He advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt from Tommy Medica (Santa Clara). He then advanced to third on a flyball from Brett Wallace (Arizona State). Logan Forsythe (Arkansas) then hit a single to drive home Danks with the eventual winning run. Ryan Berry (Rice) started for Team USA and went 7.1 strong innings while only giving up three hits and three walks but got the no-decision. Brett Hunter pitched the final 1.1 innings without allowing a hit while striking out three batters to up his record to 3-0. Yuske Iwamato was the tough luck loser pitching a complete game while allowing the only hit and four walks. Team USA is off on Friday before playing The Netherlands on Saturday.
Team USA Recap
World Port Tournament Schedule