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College Baseball’s Second Friday Night – A Pitching Retrospective

This is a Strasburg-free zone (more or less), so get your fix of the big man over at Strasburg Strasburg Strasburg Strasburg Strasburg

Highlights from the most notable pitching performances from the second Friday night of the college baseball. We’ve got great prospects, good prospects, and fringe prospects. Whatever you are in the mood for, we’ve got it. Well, as long as you are in the mood for college pitching prospects. If not, what the heck are you doing here? May I suggest a lovely knitting website that may better suit your interests?

Full report, after the jump…

Alex White (North Carolina): 6.1 IP 4 H 1 ER 2 BB 5 K 8 GO 4 AO, 100 pitches

Mike Minor (Vanderbilt): 7.2 IP 6 H 2 ER 3 BB 4 K 7 GO 7 AO 3 LO

Two of the top draft-eligible pitchers in all the land pitched for their respective universities to wins on the second Friday night of the college baseball season. Every start for White is an audition to be the first player picked (non-Strasburg division) in this year’s draft. Dave Cameron is on the money with this recent FanGraphs posting about his love of the changeup. I, too, love the change and cite Minor’s plus offering of the pitch as a reason why I think he’ll be a quality major league starting pitcher for a long time.

Sean Black (Seton Hall): 4.2 IP 4 H 2 ER 5 BB 4 K 4 GO 6 AO, 106 pitches
James Jones (Long Island): 5 IP 5 H 7 ER 5 BB 3 K 7 GO 4 AO (1-2, R, 2 BB)
Brad Boxberger (Southern California): 6 IP 2 H 1 ER 5 BB 5 K 2 GO 7 AO 1 LO

Black was outdueled by Alex White in the much anticipated (three years in the making) matchup between two of the top prep arms from their high school class. Boxberger’s first start of the year looks a good bit like his most recent start, no? His first line was: 6 IP 1 H 0 ER 6 BB 11 K. So, 11 IP with 11 BB, but only 3 hits and 1 earned run allowed – ah, so that’s what it means to be effectively wild. Those kind of shenanigans work in college, but it remains to be seen how Boxberger’s living on the edge style will translate to the pros.

Kyle Thebeau (Texas A&M): 3 IP 1 H 0 ER 0 BB 0 K 6 GO 1 AO 1 LO, 25 pitches
Nate Newman (Pepperdine): 6 IP 1 H 0 ER 3 BB 5 K 7 GO 2 AO 4 LO
Trevor Holder (Georgia): 5 IP 6 H 2 ER 1 5 K
Preston Guilmet (Arizona): 4.2 IP 7 H 5 ER 3 BB 4 K 6 GO 1 AO 1 LO

Friday night was senior night as two of the top senior arms went head to head in Tempe. Trevor Holder bested Preston Guilmet in a battle of two players who profile best as swingmen/middle relievers as professionals. Nate Newman is below Holder and Guilmet on many senior class rankings, but of the three he has the best chance to actually remain in a starting role as a professional. Kyle Thebeau’s three economical innings were highlighted by groundball after groundball after groundball…

Dustin Ackley (North Carolina): 2-7, R, BB (doubleheader Friday)
Grant Green (Southern Carolina): 1-3, K, SB, E (4)

Errors aren’t a good way to evaluate the effectiveness of a defender, but outliers in any category deserve a closer look. I’m not in a position to evaluate what is going on with Grant Green’s defense, but four errors this early in the season is probably not a good sign. It could be nothing, of course, but it’s worth keeping a close eye on.

Alex Meyer (Kentucky): 3 IP 5 H 4 ER 1 BB 3 K 3 GO 2 AO, 42 pitches
Anthony Ranaudo (Louisiana State): 6.1 IP 3 H 1 ER 1 BB 10 K 3 GO 5 AO

Two hulking SEC righthanders with very different Friday outings. It’s interesting (I really overdo it with that word, sorry) that Meyer was used out of the Wildcat bullpen.

Seth Frankoff (UNC Wilmington): 7 IP 4 H 0 ER 2 BB 7 K 4 GO 8 AO, 91 pitches
Daniel Cropper (UNC Wilmington): 7 IP 4 H 2 ER 2 BB 9 K 4 GO 6 AO 1 LO, 107 pitches

More about their performances than their status of prospects, Frankoff and Cropper completely shut down Michigan State over the course of Friday night’s doubleheader. Cropper is a draft-eligible sophomore out of Maryland, where he was the number one prep player his senior year of school. Frankoff is a long shot as a prospect, but he’s a solid college contributor and a real key to Wilmington’s postseason aspirations becoming a reality.

Danny Hultzen (Virginia): 6 IP 6 H 0 ER 1 BB 12 K, 110 pitches

Hultzen was a late bloomer in high school who emerged at the last possible minute last year as a potential top five round pick. He fell to the tenth round due to signability concerns, but he is a legit 2011 prospect as a lefty with a 90+ MPH fastball, a breaking ball with genuine promise, and a frame with plenty of room to grow.

By the way, I’m not suggesting there is anything wrong with knitting as a hobby. In fact, I bet there is at least a little bit of crossover appeal between the two interests; you can knit while watching a game, or watch a game while you knit. Just wanted to clear that up because I’d hate for my first ever angry email to be about me disparaging knitting, of all things…



  1. rfozga says:

    So I just realized I added Ackley and Green to this post by accident. I had planned to do the hitters separately, but they somehow slipped by me right on into the pitching post. College kids, am I right? Always trying to pull a fast one on ya…

    Anyway, rather than edit it out, I’ll just leave them in there but then still include them (with updated lines) in Sunday’s post. Any objections? Anybody care about such a minor detail except a weirdo like me?

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