TEMPE, AZ- We had typical Phoenix weather this weekend; very hot and very dry. Daytime temperatures reached the 110 degree region every day.
Still the 80+ scouts and college coaches in attendance stuck around to see a lot of good prospects from the west coast. The event was particularly strong with pitching. Though there may not have been a surefire first-rounder, there are many who showed the potential to become early picks within a year.
Below are the Top-10 Prospects as determined by myself and fellow Team One staff Jeff Spelman, Scott Zilmer, Stan Brzezicki, and Carl Andrietta.
On Tuesday, we’ll add 15 more names; these 25 will be the Team One West nominees to be considered for the Team One National Prospects Game which will be held in Las Vegas, November 15th-16th. The National will consist of the 40 elite players in the country.
Only 2003-graduating high school players are eligible. The Top-10 ranking as well as the 25 nominations are a reflection of what we feel to be their pro draft potential for June, 2003.
1. Jim Rapoport,OF, Chaminade (CA) HS 6-0, 172 L/L
The only thing Rapoport (left) doesn’t have is size. But it will be interesting to see how his toolbox develops when he physically matures. Rapoport showed a switch-blade, lefthanded swing with good lift on the end. His arm is already MLB rightfield-caliber and he ran a 6.88 60 yd on a slow track. Rapoport has the potential to go very early next year.
2. Quentin Andes, RHP, Cibola (NM) HS 6-1, 188 R/R
Andes showed a very quick arm with the potential for several “plus” big league pitches. Right now, he throws 89-91 MPH consistently with plenty of life. Andes has a feel for throwing a curveball, slider, and change-up, and the arm-action to project.
3. Josh Butler, RHP, San Ramon Valley (CA) HS 6-4, 180 R/R
Butler has a big league frame plus precocious pitchability. He threw comfortably in the 87-89 MPH range, showing impressive command of both his fastball and slider. There is natural action to his four and two-seamer. With the increased velocity that should come with maturity and an improved ability to pitch inside, Butler could turn into an early pick.
4. Logan Ardis, RHP, Beyer (CA) HS 6-1, 190 R/R
Ardis had the best curveball in camp. He threw a two-plane hammer at 78-80 MPH that will only get better. It’s a hard pitch for the umpire to call because it breaks so much. Ardis’s quick arm delivers 89-90 MPH regularly and should project. He’s athletic with his delivery and arm-action. Command is a problem right now, but some mechanical tweaking may solve a lot of it.
5. David Filipiak, RHP, Laguna Hills (CA) HS 6-1, 192 R/R
There wasn’t anything in particular that jumped out about Filipiak (right), but he was very solid across the board and quite pitchable. He threw 88-90 MPH with regularity and showed an ability to snap a major league curveball at times. Filipiak doesn’t have the ideal “towering” appearance for a pitcher, but he does have an athletic build which should get stronger.
6. Ryan Muller, RHP, Live Oak (CA) HS 6-1, 160 R/R
When you see how slenderly built Muller (left) is, you don’t expect him to generate such arm-speed. But in a one-inning appearance, virtually every fastball was 90-91 MPH. Muller has a long, loose arm, and showed the makings of a big league curve. I saw him a couple weeks earlier at the Perfect Game Showcase, and he threw several MPH better this time.
7. Donald Veal, LHP, Buena (AZ) HS 6-3, 185 L/L
Veal (right) has a lot of projection, with a long, lean 6-3 frame, and 87-90 MPH arm-strength. He throws quite easily, but there’s a lot of work to be done with his curveball and overall command. Veal could be a guy to really come on by next june.
8. Sean Henry, SS, Armijo (CA) HS 6-0, 170 R/R
Henry blazed to a 6.65 60 yd on a noticeably slow turf. He also showed some defensive hands, though his arm may move to second. He did show 86-88 MPH off the mound, so there is arm-strength. At the plate, Henry is a pesky hitter from the right side.
9. Romeo Newman, OF, West (CA) HS 6-3, 185 R/R
Newman (left) has a strong, 6-3 build, and the ability to generate both bat-speed and power from the right side. He made adjustments on breaking balls and went the other way as well. Defensively, Newman has some lateral agility though he only ran a 7.3 60 yd. His arm is close to MLB-average.
10. Aaron Lowenstein, C, Calabasas (CA) HS 6-1, 170 R/R
Lowenstein has a lot of athleticism and quick feet behind the plate. He pop-timed below 1.9 seconds several times in the workout and showed good hands as a receiver. Lowenstein’s swing projects with wood as he gets physically stronger with maturity.