2011 Under Armour All-America Game, powered by Baseball Factory Scouting Report Blog
INNING BY INNING RECAP
Near the end of the 8th inning, the game was called due to rain and potentially dangerous field conditions. The score was 6-4 National at the time, and I would assume that will go down as the final.
LHP Ryan Kellogg topped at 87, pitched at 84-86 from an over top slot. FB was straight, CB had rolling downward action at 69-70. Threw strikes and started bats, mixed in breaking ball. Has room to use his large frame to drive and extend more down the slope.
RHP Jamie Callahan threw his fastball 86-89. He gathered well to balance point, allowing arm a chance to work on back side. Was aggressive down the slope and out front with arm, was able to spin a tight slider at 77 and a solid 11-5 curve at 71. Went after hitters with fastball, had enough feel for breaking ball to stay around the plate with wet baseball in steady rain.
RHP Russell Reynolds pitched between 87 and 90 with his fastball. He was fairly upright with his delivery, and threw most pitches from an over top slot. Saw a sweepy breaking ball from a 3/4 slot, but most offerings were from FB slot. Threw strikes with FB and SL at 79-83, had gradual action across zone. Arm had quickness out front, delivery was quick tempo.
RHP Carson Kelly topped at 92 with his fastball, pitched in the 89-90 range. Delivery was a bit rushed, but his arm was still able to catch up mostly - didn't cause him any problems finding the plate, he was around the zone with fastball and slider. Slider had occasional biting action and depth at 78-80. Challenged hitters and got bats started.
RHP Jose Orlando Berrios went right after hitters with three quality pitches. FB was 90-93 with arm side run from 3/4 slot. Breaking ball was slurvy type at 78 with big action across and down in the zone. CH had big arm side run at 79. Arm had quickness out front. Strike thrower with ability to change speeds and move the ball both ways.
LHP Aaron Smith threw strikes started bats, allowing him to record a quick and easy three outs. FB was in the low 80s from high 3/4 slot. CB was 69-71 with rolling downward action. Delivery was mostly balanced, arm action was shortish on the back side.
RHP Curt Britt topped at 92 with his fastball. He worked very quickly, and attacked the zone with his fastball. Had some late life at times, induced quite a few empty swings with fastballs in 89-91 range. Has room to improve delivery to enhance present arm strength. Breaking ball was 78-79 with varying action, CH at 84. Started bats, around plate, went right after hitters.
RHP Hayden Hurst pitched from a near over top arm slot, and generated fastballs between 88 and 91. His delivery was balanced and in control through landing and release, allowing him to drive his large frame down the slope of the mound. CH was thrown with near fastball arm speed at 80, breaking ball had depth to 11-5 action at 77-78 mph.
RHP Yency Almonte topped at 91, pitched around 88 mostly with his fastball. Came out of high 3/4 arm slot, arm worked loose and easy out front and delivery was balanced. Breaking ball had 11-5 shape with occasional depth when velocity was closer to 80. Also mixed in CH at 78, threw with near fastball arm speed - giving him a usable three pitch mix.
LHP Kyle Twomey was 86-88 with fastball from a 3/4 to high 3/4 arm angle. His delivery was fluid and easy, and featured good balance from separation through landing. CB and CH were both right around 70. Threw strikes with three pitch mix, showed ability to move fastball arond zone a bit.
RHP Tyler Gonzales featured a lighthing quick arm out front along with a quick tempo delivery. Fastball topped at 94, sat 89-91 with slight arm side run. Velocity was up and down likely due to some effort around separation of hands in delivery. Showed great feel for slider, velocity was 82-84 with depth and late biting action.
After a rain delay of nearly an hour, RHP Nick Travieso took the mound for the American team in the bottom of the 3rd inning. He gathered well to balance point, and maintained his balance well to landing. His arm worked well out of the glove, and had power out front. Fastball topped at 94, sat 89-91. He was around the plate with fastball and mixed in slider 79-83.
LHP Cole Irvin pitched from a balanced, smooth tempo delivery. His arm worked free and easy out of the glove, and with little effort out front to generate FB velocity between 86 and 90. He moved his FB in and out, and showed feel for pitching in one inning stint. Mixed in CH at 81 for broken bat ground out, and showed CB at 72-73.
RHP Trey Killian worked from a 3/4 to low 3/4 arm angle and somewhat upright delivery. His FB was 88-92 with flat arm side run. He attacked the zone with his fastball, and showed ability to turn over his CH at 79 with late sink. Breaking ball was 79 with the makings of SL action, didn't see more than a few, none of which was likely his best.
Teddy Stankiewicz delivered a 95 mph fastball (on the stadium gun) for the first pitch of the 2011 Under Armour All America Game powered by Baseball Factory at 1:08pm.
RHP Stankiewicz pitched between 88-91, touched 95. He worked from an athletic, up tempo delivery. His arm worked with quickness and life out front. FB appeared to have some cut at times, and his breaking ball had slider action in the low to mid 80s.
RHP Ty Hensley touched 93 from a near over top slot. His fastball worked at 90-91 mostly, showed an 11-5 breaking ball at 77 and a straight change at 81. A timely double play ball ended the first inning scoring threat of the National team to end the first inning.
* Saturday 8/13/11 @ 12:15pm
HOME RUN DERBY RECAP
Lewis Brinson, American, hit the first homer of the contest, landing one just short of the Protect This House banner in left center field. He followed it up with another blast half way up the bleachers a bit more to straight away LF to finish with 2 home runs.
Byron Buxton, National, launched one nearly to Waveland Ave for his first homer, power I didn’t see during his batting practice yesterday and earlier this morning. His second homer went out more towards LCF, and while not as impressive still demonstrated his ability to kick it into a higher gear when needed.
Carson Kelly, American, got on the board early when his second swing resulted in a blast to straight away LF. He hit several lasers and drove another off the wall in LCF, finished first round with 1 homer run.
Clint Coulter, National, made a bit of loud contact but did not get any into the bleachers this round.
Stryker Trahan, American, hit the Stub Hub banner on the face of the upper deck foul down the right field line, but did not get any out in fair territory.
Franmil Reyes, National, drove one to the base of the LCF wall right at the 368 marker and followed it up with missile line drives.
Mikey White, American, launched one high and deep half way up the LF bleachers to get on the board.
David Thompson, National, went off the wall in both LCF and LF but was unable to reach the stands.
Lewis Brinson went deep in the left center gap for his first homer in the finals. He followed it with a soaring drive deep up the bleachers around to straight away LF.
Byron Buxton launched a series of gap shots and line drives, along with a high deep drive to the CF side of the pull gap off the base of the wall. None reached the seats this round.
Congratulations to Lewis Brinson, champion of the Home Run Derby at the 2011 Under Armour All America Game powered by Baseball Factory.
* Saturday 8/13/11 @ 11:19am
BATTING PRACTICE SUMMARY #2
The American team, wearing black jerseys, is hitting live now on the field.
Carson Kelly didn’t waste much time getting loose. He was whistling the bat through the zone in his first round, sending laser line drives with backspin easily out though the gaps. I’m watching him from a different angle today, and can really appreciate how his bat works though the zone.
Lewis Brinson seems to be in better rhythm this morning. With his front side ready sooner he is able to generate noticeably better bat speed, and not surprisingly the ball is getting off his bat with more life.
Ryan Ripken was centering balls consistently during his rounds. His contact was much louder today, and his line drives got through the infield in a hurry. His hands work back and through contact well, allowing him generate excellent backspin and carry. His left handed stroke is growing on me the more I see him.
Anthony Alford showed more bat speed today than he did yesterday. That combined with his already compact and simple move to contact makes it hard to fathom many fastballs getting by him.
* Saturday 8/13/11 @ 10:31am
BATTING PRACTICE SUMMARY #1
Batting practice is underway at the 2011 Under Armour All America Game powered by Baseball Factory. The National team started off, wearing red jerseys this morning.
New day, same sweet swing from Byron Buxton. His is almost more of a classic left handed stroke, but is heavy on substance in the form of a short and direct move to contact with excellent balance and barrel accuracy.
Franmil Reyes picked up where he left off yesterday afternoon in the home run derby qualification. We haven’t seen any tape measure shots like we did yesterday, but he is consistently launching balls with ease this morning.
Yairo Munoz and Jesmuel Valentin look right at home on a big league infield during their double play fungo work. So far Munoz is working at SS while Valentin is taking feeds at 2B.
Tomas Nido looked like a different guy today, his bat was alive through the zone and the ball was jumping off his bat. This is more along the lines of what we saw from him earlier in the summer.
* Friday 8/12/11 @ 6:56pm
WORKOUT DAY SUMMARY
While the position most certainly demands more, we accept the fact that when catchers workout we simply watch them catch and throw. When the umpire yells play ball on Saturday, the live or die skills will begin to show.
Stryker Trahan showed the best pure arm strength among the catchers, even though it was well overshadowed by the near top of the scouting scale raw power he showed a bit later in the workout. He was able to drive his throws through the bag on a downward angle, and he has room to clean up the rhythm in his release.
Jeremy Martinez featured a balanced and easy release with rhythm and fluidity. His arm checked in around average on the 20-80 scouting scale, and his throws were accurate. He would later show many of the same skills at the plate, where his body control and balance allowed him to consistently deliver the good part of the barrel to contact.
The outfield workout focuses on throwing, much like we see from catchers. The throw tool is certainly not as vital for outfielders as it is for catchers, but nonetheless it is what we watch in workouts like this.
Byron Buxton topped the list of outfield throwing arms on this day. His overall actions were balanced and athletic, while his arm stroke was loose and full with excellent whip out front that allowed him to carry his throws on line through the target. He later showed among the best pure swings of the day. His stroke was short and direct to contact, his hands had life through the hitting zone, and he maintained excellent balance and control of his body throughout his swing.
Lewis Brinson checked in around 60 on the 20-80 scouting scale. His arm stroke was loose and full with speed out front, all skills that allow for the generation of backspin and on line carry on throws. The athletic ability in his actions was also clearly evident. His right handed stroke has leverage and speed though contact, even though it seemed that his timing was a bit off throughout the day. Even through home run derby qualification he drove several balls out to the biggest parts of the ballpark.
While the infield workout is the closet to what we actually see in games, it is still inherently contrived and doesn’t always put players in the most natural setting to show their abilities. On this day, we worked out on field turf - which levels the playing field and doesn’t always allow the best hands and gloves to stand out.
With that said, Jesmuel Valentin still showed as among the most advanced defensive players we have seen in the history of our event. His first steps were precise and his overall footwork was highlighted by a combination of efficiency and body control. His hands and exchange were sure and quick, while his arm action was compact and throws had life across the diamond. He handled the bat very well from both sides of the plate later in the day. His right handed stroke appeared more natural, though he rotated his core and worked the barrel through the zone from the left side as well.
Gavin Cecchini showed a glove easily on the plus side of average. His actions were agile and fluid, and he ranged well to both sides with body control and the ability to complete plays. He generated at least average arm strength from a compact wristy arm stroke. While he showed a line drive gap to gap approach in his first couple of rounds, he showed standout raw power in his final round and in home run derby qualification. His swing has few moving parts and he is balanced and under control as he works the barrel through the hitting area.
Carson Kelly showed solid glove action and footwork along with easy and efficient actions. He showed arm strength in the 50 range on the 20-80 scale from a compact and easy arm stroke. He stood out more at the plate, where he featured a loose swing with leverage and easy life through the zone. We’ve seen him improve in this area a great deal since we first saw him, and as he has gotten looser with the bat the ball has begun to jump off his bat with much more regularity.
Matt Olson was nimble around the bag at 1B, and featured solid hands and actions. His left handed stroke was easy and fluid, yet powerful and efficient. At 6-foot-5 and 225 pounds he is physical and strong enough to consistently drive balls with what seems like minimal effort.
The players listed above do not represent the only prospects among our group of players. The first pitch of the game has yet to be thrown, and with live baseball comes the opportunity for players to showcase their abilities in a more familiar and natural environment.
Check back throughout the day tomorrow for new content. We will leadoff with a recap of the home run derby, and will then post as many live game reports as we can during the game.
* Friday 8/12 @ 4:28pm
Workout Day is well underway at the 2011 Under Armour All America Game powered by Baseball Factory.
Catchers led off the workout with throws to second base. Outfielders followed with throws to third base and home plate. Infielders wrapped up the defensive porition of the workout with grounds balls from their positions.
Players got three rounds during batting practice, giving them ample opportunity to work the nerves out in the box. Home Run Derby qualification wraps up the afternoon, players get a chance to earn their way into the derby finals prior to the game on Saturday morning.
Check back later this evening for scouting reports on standout prospects, and again live tomorrow during the game for game / score updates and in game scouting reports.