Special to the CBB from NYDore
Following in line with recruiting coordinator Erik Bakich’s recent success, Vanderbilt is continuing to load up on young talent. Following a 10-man ’07 class that will all be reporting to campus, Vandy is signing blue chip pitchers at a rapid rate for next year’s class. The latest addition is Portsmouth, Rhode Island lefty Ryan Westmoreland. EastBayRI.com reported that the crafty lefty committed last Friday at a New England Collegiate Baseball League game in Newport RI. The full article is available by clicking here.
Perfect Game ranks Westmoreland as a top 2008 prospect with a 9 out of 10 rating (2006 showcase). Westmoreland was throwing between 85-87 during the 2006 PG Showcases, exhibiting solid downward movement on a sinking fastball and change, to complement a solid slider.
He joins lefties Grayson Garvin (Suwanee GA; 2007 PG rating pending, 8 in 2005) and Corey Williams (Huntsville AL; 2007 PG rating pending, 8.5 in 2005). Garvin and Williams topped out at 89 and 91, respectively. The heat comes from the right side of the mound, and Tennessee, where Vandy has inked Smyrna two-sport legend Sonny Gray and Battle Ground Academy’s Navery Moore. Both Gray and Moore have hit 96 on the gun, though Moore has undergone Tommy John surgery. Moore has not attended a PG Showcase, while Gray’s 2007 rating is pending.
The five pitchers will join Corbin’s first recruit of the class, Annandale, New Jersey outfielder Matt Marquis. Perfect Game gave Marquis a 9 rating and noted his frame, agility and line drive power.
Bakich and Head Coach Tim Corbin will be graduating or losing to the draft a large portion of the position players next spring, including 2007 All-American 3B Pedro Alvarez, RF Dominic De la Osa and SS Ryan Flaherty. Look for the Commodores to add to the ’08 crop with a third baseman, middle infielder and a catcher. Targeted for catcher are Tennessee standouts Casey Dykes and Jacob Stallings (son of VU hoops coach Kevin). Both Dykes and Stallings received 8.5 ratings from Perfect Game in 2006.
VandySports.com (Rivals) editor Mike Rapp recently caught up with five of Vanderbilt’s 2007 blue chippers. Florida OF Joey Manning, Texas RHP Chase Reid, US Virgin Islands LHP Kellen St. Luce, Panamanian (by way of Maryland) SS Gabe Ortiz and Connecticut Catcher Curt Casali all have foregone professional opportunities by enrolling in summer school. Rivals subscribers can read Mike’s 5-part interview series with the newest Commodores by clicking here.