Draft Dope – Top Outfielders, Mickie Mahtook, Anthony Meo, and Derek Self

Currently, the top five outfielders in the upcoming June draft are Connecticut’s George Springer, Nebraska’s Bubba Starling, South Carolina’s Jackie Bradley Jr., LSU’s Mickie Mahtook, and Tustin (CA.) High School’s Travis Harrison. Rising quickly are Dallas Jesuit (Tx.) High School’s Josh Bell and Miami Dade College’s Brian Goodwin.

 
Speaking of Mahtook, the home run output seems to be far less with the new bats this year, but don’t tell that to Mickie. He goes into the second weekend of the season with already four yard balls.

 
A good buddy of mine, “XMLBScout” of http://xmlbscout.angelfire.com, shares with me the concern of pitching someone for a complete nine innings this early in the season. He wrote earlier last week: I also saw where in BA, that Gerrit Cole and Taylor Jungman both went the distance in their very first starts of the season. This boggles my mind. Why would you let a kid go 9 innings in their very first start? Because they wanted to? Because you felt they could handle it? What is the reason for this coaches?” Well, it happened again on Friday when Oregon State let Sam Graviglio went the distance for Oregon State against 28th ranked Connecticut.

 
One of the pitchers that recently moved up the mock draft lists was Coastal Carolina’s Anthony Meo. He has been ranked in seven of the last nine mocks, including three drafts this month that have him as a first round pick. Well, Saturday Meo was drilled by 30th ranked California. Stats: 5.0-IP, 9-ER 2-HR, 6-K, 1-BB. It will be interesting if this affects the next series of mocks that come down the pipe.

 
#16 Louisville lost a tough one to Toledo on Saturday, though reliever Derek Self did everything he could to prevent that from happening. Self went 3.0-IP, 0-R, 2-K. I asked him what he thought of his outing:
 

“Yes, I came in the 7th inning today, even though we are down 3-1 at the time, but going in with the mindset of a winning situation. Just like a recap of the past weekend in Florida in the Big East Big Ten Challenge, I came in focus and ready to compete! My main goal when I come out of the pen is to come in and pound the strike zone and I felt like I did that tonight. Not allowing any hits in 3 innings of work 2 strike outs and a pick off to keep the runners off the bag. With my defense behind me making plays, I give them credit for my backup. Even heading into the 8th and 9th inning still losing the game you can’t give up pitching just because you’re not winning. You have to still give it your all and never give up. Even though it wasn’t the best temperature outside tonight, I still felt like I had my best stuff. I just went in tonight giving our team a chance to score and take the lead and holding Toledo to not score anymore. That was my mission. Something I think about while I’m in the game whether we are winning or losing is to throw every pitch like it’s your last and I did that tonight. Yea we had a hard trouble getting the bats going and couldn’t get any more runs and we ended up losing 3-1, but like I said, no matter what I’m going to go in there and give it my all and do my job.”

 

(you can’t teach this kind of baseball intelligence… the Mets Chris Hilliard and I discussed this kind of pitching last season and told him an old trick I used to use was throwing every pitch as if there are two strikes on the batter with two outs in the bottom the ninth. Last pitch thinking created big league closers…)

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