We continue the list today with number 14 in our countdown with sophomore RHP Gerrit Cole from UCLA. He is from Santa Ana, California as he attended Orange Lutheran High School where he was a three year letterwinner playing under Mike Grahovac. He had an outstanding senior season where he went 8-2 with a 0.46 ERA while totaling 121 strikeouts and walking 18 batters in 75.2 innings. Heading into the 2008 MLB Draft, Perfect Game Crosschecker rated him the best high school player in the country while Baseball America had him fourth. Cole was selected by the New York Yankees with the 28th overall selection as he slid as he told many teams he wanted to attend college. Cole lived up to his side of the bargain as he refused a multi-million dollar contract to attend UCLA.
We continue the list today with number 82 in our countdown with Kentucky junior LHP Logan Darnell. He is from Goodpasture High School and his hometown is Joelton Tennessee. He had an outstanding high school career where he won the state championship in his freshman and senior seasons. In his senior season, he went 8-1 with a 1.57 ERA while striking out 112 batters in 62 innings. He also was strong in his junior season when he went 11-3 with an ERA of 1.20. He picked up All-State honors in his junior and senior campaigns while being named a Louisville Slugger High School All-American after his senior season.
PGCrosschecker.com writer Patrick Ebert has put together his 2009 All-American Team. The players that are included on the list took part in previous Perfect Game events. He has Missouri catcher Trevor Coleman behind the plate with Rich Poythress of Georgia at first base. Kyle Seager of North Carolina and Grant Green of Southern Cal are the second base and shortstop selections respectively. Chris Dominguez is the selection at third base as he is having a great career with Louisville. Continue reading
Patrick Ebert of PGCrossChecker.com recently posted a fantastic article about the 2009 MLB Draft profiling some of the top players in the nation. The articles talks about some of the top High School players in the country in Matthew Purke and Tyler Matzek. (We saw both in the AFLAC All-American and the Under Armour All-American games.) He also talks about the two independent pitchers in Tanner Scheppers formerly of Fresno State and Aaron Crow formely of Missouri who decided to not sign professional contracts after last year and will not return to college as they await the 2009 draft. He finally talks about UNC’s dynamic duo of Alex White and Dustin Ackley leading the top prospect in the ACC this upcoming year. Continue reading
Rivals.com division Rivals High released their first ever Top 100 High School Baseball Players this week. The rankings (found here) are topped by Griffin, GA SS Tim Beckham (pictured left), a Southern Cal commit and probable top 5 pick in the upcoming draft. Joining him at the top are Cooper City, FL 1B Eric Hosmer (Arizona State); Long Beach, CA OF Aaron Hicks (Southern Cal); Wentzville, MO P Tim Melville (uncommitted); and Santa Ana, CA P Gerrit Cole (UCLA). The top five are widely speculated to all go pro after the 2008 MLB Draft. Continue reading
Perfect Game has put out their top Recruiting Classes for the 2009 season with Arizona State University ranked in the Top spot. The top recruit for the Sun Devils is Eric Hosmer as he is one of eleven players ranked in the Top 200 in the country to sign with Pat Murphy’s squad. The Georgia Bulldogs are listed in the runner’s up spot as they have signed 20 players with Michael Palazzone as the top recruit in the class. North Carolina comes in with another strong class after their second consecutive CWS championship series appearance. Continue reading
Patrick Ebert of Perfect Game has written a great article previewing 13 players who he thinks will have breakout seasons in 2008. He breaks every player in depth with a small writeup. The list is loaded with Big Ten players as I believe Patrick is from Big Ten country as he also works for Brewerfan.net. We have included his team below Continue reading
Perfect Game Crosschecker has put out their annual rankings of the Top 100 programs for the 2008 campaign. Leading the way is the Arizona Wildcats and chief rival Arizona State comes in as the runner up. The rest of the Top 5 is filled out by Texas, Miami (FL), and Vanderbilt. The full article is available here.
The University of Illinois infielders Joe Bonadonna and Brandon Wikoff were recognized for their summer accomplishments. Bonadonna played for the Duluth Huskies in the Northwoods League where he received the Silver Glove Award (top defensive player) for second basemen. He was also named to the league’s post season All-Star team. Bonadonna also broke the Northwoods league record for stolen bases in a season with 45 in 56 attempts. Wikoff received accolades from Perfect Game Crosschecker as the 24th best prospect in the Northwoods League and picked up a spot on the post season All-Star team. The full release is available here.
FROM VALLEY BASEBALL LEAGUE
Baseball website PGcrosschecker.com recently compiled its list of the top 20 players in the Valley Baseball League. The list was compiled by Allan Simpson with input from the league’s managers and scouts.
Similar to the recently released Baseball America list, PG Crosschecker identified Winchester’s Luke Greinke as the league’s top prospect. He was also the league MVP. He was followed by Covington outfielder Jason Kipnis, but then six of the next seven players listed were pitchers.
Simpson noted that league officials felt that the 2007 season saw a jump in overall talent around the league, in particular in the pitching department. The numbers appear to support that assertion. In 2007, league pitchers as a whole had a 3.70 earned run average while hitters had a .247 batting average as a league. In 2006, hitters posted a .258 average while pitchers compiled a 3.88 ERA, and the year before saw a .257 batting average and 3.97 ERA as a league.
While Waynesboro finished first in the regular season and won the Jim Lineweaver Cup as league champions, the Generals placed just three players in the top 20 and none higher than #11. In fact, many of the top prospects come from the lower half of the standings. Simpson noted that was a sign of the league’s improved depth.
PGCrosschecker.com Valley League Top 20 Prospects
1. Luke Greinke, UT, Winchester (Auburn)
2. Jason Kipnis, OF, Covington (Arizona State)
3. Zac Blakney, RHP, Fauquier (Montevallo)
4. Shayne Moody, SS, Woodstock (Charlotte)
5. Ashur Tolliver, LHP, Harrisonburg (Arkansas-Little Rock)
6. Donald Jordat, RHP, Luray (Miami-Dade C.C.)
7. Rob Gilliam, RHP, Luray (UNC Greensboro)
8. Tim Sexton, RHP, Staunton (Miami-Dade C.C.)
9. Josh Judy, RHP, Haymarket (Indiana Tech)
10. Tyler Kuhn, SS/2B, Luray (West Virginia)
11. Pat Irvine, C/OF, Waynesboro (Elon)
12. Garrett Parker, RHP, Harrisonburg (Oklahoma City)
13. Bobby Hernandez, RHP, Staunton (Barry)
14. Josh Eidell, RHP, Woodstock (Villanova)
15. Elih Villanueva, RHP, Luray (Florida State)
16. Jeremy Cruz, 1B, Luray (Stetson)
17. Chris Masters, LHP, New Market (Western Carolina)
18. Brandon Sizemore, 2B, Waynesboro (Charleston)
19. Kurt Davidson, C/1B, Waynesboro (Akron)
20. Dustin Umberger, RHP, Luray (Liberty)
Full scouting reports from the summer on each player are available here. A subscription is required to view the insider-level reports.