Some mid-week draft news and notes to hold you over until the weekend action picks up. Just a reminder, the Pittsburgh Pirates picked 24th overall in the first round of the 2014 amateur draft, which starts on June 5th. For information on some of the best players in this draft class, check out our four-part draft preview.
Indiana had a Wednesday game against Xavier and won without either of their two big bats collecting a hit. Catcher Kyle Schwarber went 0-for-3 and first baseman Sam Travis went 0-for-2 in their 2-1 win. It wasn’t a real bad game for either player though, as they both drew two walks. Schwarber has a team-leading .317 average to go along with his .965 OPS. Travis has started off slow with a .263 average in ten games and no homers. He had 22 doubles and ten homers last year.
South Carolina had two mid-week games this week against Stetson. Their catcher Grayson Greiner and utility fielder Joey Pankake are both possible late first round picks this year. Pankake went 1-for-4 on Wednesday, with an RBI single and run scored. Greiner didn’t start the game, coming in during the seventh inning as a defensive replacement. He struck out in his only at-bat. On Tuesday, Pankake went 1-for-4 with two runs scored and two RBIs. He started one game in left field and one at third base. Greiner went 2-for-3 with three RBIs in the 7-1 victory. South Carolina is 12-0 on the season.
Dan Kirby from Through The Fences posted his weekly list of the ten college players on the rise. Among them is Fresno State pitcher Jordan Brink, who has been getting lots of positive press recently and could be working his way into the first round. He also mentioned Mike Papi and Max Pentecost, who were mentioned here yesterday.
Kirby also tweeted out the stats for Sean Reid-Foley, a 6’4″ right-handed pitcher, who looks like a possibility for the Pirates in the first round, if he lasts that long. Reid-Foley has 37 strikeouts in 16 innings this year, while allowing just one walk and two hits. I have posted a video of him below courtesy of Big League Futures. In an October tournament, scouts had Reid-Foley sitting 92-94 and topping out at 95 MPH.
Clint Longenecker from Baseball America takes a look at a game in Mississippi that featured two of the better prep players in this draft. Shortstop Ti’quan Forbes took on first baseman Bobby Bradley and Longenecker provides scouting reports and videos of each player. Forbes is a likely first round pick, while Bradley will likely go somewhere within the first five rounds.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.
Foley looks nice. Seems a little too tight up top though.
I really like the movement he has on some of those fastballs, though his command wasn’t too sharp in this video. Judging by the stats so far this year, it sounds like he has made some improvements