Danny Hultzen, Paul Karmas, Francisco Lindor, Bubba Starling, Mike Strong

Hultzen entered the spring as one of the higher probability arms with mid-rotation upside, and has grown that projection into a ceiling as a true #2 starter. He has roundly won over evaluators and gets glowing reviews from the national media outlets covering the draft. The UVA lefty has been tried, tested and proven repeatedly over his three year career in Charlottesville, showing growth in stuff each year, poise on the mound and improved durability. The concerns with Hultzen hang on his slider and his fastball velocity. Hultzen's motion creates a tough angle on hitters and produces a limited view of the ball before release, giving the illusion of pitches jumping on hitters. The draw back is that the angle and plane of his slider limit both the tilt on the pitch and the strike entry window at the plate. If more advanced hitters are able to identify the pitch early enough (a task admittedly made more difficult by the mechanics) the utility of the pitch may peak at "giving them a different look." http://diamondscapescouting.com/scoutingreports_2011_hultzenda.html

St. John’s senior first baseman Paul Karmas earned BIG EAST Player of the Week honors. Karmas earns BIG EAST Player of the Week honors after batting .550 (11-for-20) with 12 RBI to lead St. John’s in a 4-0 week and held the Red Storm clinch a spot in the BIG EAST Championship. The first baseman had three doubles and two home runs, including a grand slam, for a 1.000 slugging percentage. The senior had four multi-hit games and three multi-RBI games, including a five-RBI game and a pair of three-RBI performances. Karmas went 3-for-5 with three RBI in a win against NYIT to open the week and then went 2-for-4 with a double, a grand slam and five RBI in a series-opening win against Georgetown. The first baseman was 4-for-6 with two doubles and three RBI on Saturday before closing the weekend by going 2-for-5 with a home run. http://www.bigeast.org/News/tabid/435/Article/225694/Pittsburgh,-St.-John%E2%80%99s-Earn-BIG-EAST-Baseball-Weekly-Honors.aspx

Francisco Lindor, SS, Montverde Academy (FL) - Pros: It's rare to find a true shortstop in the draft, but Lindor is just that. He's a silky-smooth defender with range, good hands, a plus arm, and instincts beyond his years. He'll still be just 17 years old when drafted, so there is even more room for projection. Cons: It's hard to see star-level upside in him, at least offensively. He's a solid hitter from both sides of the plate with the ability to drive balls into the gap, but he'll never have much in the way of power. While he's a good runner, he won't be a big base-stealer. http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=13935

Bubba Starling may be the biggest disappointment in this draft. He may end up being a 5 tool stud, but I don't have a great feeling about his hit tool. As I stated earlier, he reminds me of a more athletic David McCarty. He was the 3rd overall pick in the 1991 MLB Draft and ended up getting nearly 1500 AB's in the majors with a .242/.305/.371 slash line. I could see Starling producing similar numbers when or if he makes it to the majors. Just what I see. http://www.mlbbonusbaby.com/

Mike Strong, Oklahoma State, LHP, Jr., 6-0, 187, Afton, Minn. (Iowa Western CC) - Strong had a career night for the Cowboys in the series opener against Baylor on Friday as the senior southpaw racked up 14 strikeouts, setting a career high and tying for the most strikeouts by a Big 12 pitcher this season. The 14 punch outs were also the most by a Big 12 pitcher in conference play this season and were two shy of OSU's single-game record. In eight innings of work, the junior allowed just two hits, both of them singles, and did not allow a runner past second base with just a total of two reaching second on the night. He did not issue a walk and allowed just five baserunners (two singles, error, fielder's choice and a wild pitch on a strikeout). Strong recorded multiple strikeouts in five of his eight innings and retired the side in order four times. He also recorded five assists, and he faced just three batters over the minimum. Despite not getting a decision, Strong helped the Cowboys pick up a 1-0 win in 10 innings http://www.big12sports.com/ViewArticle.dbml?SPSID=106091&SPID=13131&ATCLID=205151743&DB_OEM_ID=10410  


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