Tallahassee, FL - First part of a recap from Next Level’s National Select Holiday Camp from December 21-23.
I want to start by wishing everyone a successful and healthy 2013.
Before I get started on player’s reports from Next Level’s camp, I’d like to thank the scouts that worked the camp for a couple of reasons.
One, they were extremely hands on with the players. I think the majority of the players that attended the camp never had that kind of instruction and believe me; they may never get that quality of instruction again in their baseball careers except at higher levels or at camps like Next Level’s.
Two, by coincidence I ran into a former player I once wanted to advise when I was an agent. Jarryd Reid had recently graduated from FAMU and was helping work the concessions at the camp as a favor to his former coach.
I hadn’t seen Jarryd since he played at Hillsborough Community College as a freshman. After HCC, Jarryd played at FAMU and became an All-MEAC selection his junior season and had a respectable senior season. http://www.famuathletics.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=25300&ATCLID=205152097
Jarryd went undrafted after two years at HCC and two years at FAMU. There were several professional teams that talked to Jarryd and asked if he wanted to be drafted and sign a professional contract after his sophomore year at HCC. Jarryd and his family decided getting his education was more important. Now a college graduate, Jarryd stressed to me in our conversations that he would do anything to have an opportunity to play professional baseball player.
I knew several of the scouts working Next Level’s camp and asked if they would watch Jarryd take batting practice in the cage later that day. They agreed. Before I knew it, I think every scout in attendance was watching Jarryd take bp. During bp, the scouts were asking Jarryd all kinds of questions about why he wasn’t drafted, his personal life, his speed, and positions he played. That was a sign they liked what they saw. Immediately after Jarryd’s bp, several teams asked him for his contact information and let him know he’d be hearing from them. Jarryd thanked me for setting up the workout. I only asked him to keep me informed if anything happened with any of the teams.
I know this a personal story of mine and doesn’t have much to do with Next Level’s camp but I felt I had to share it with you because you never know where life takes you and how you can affect someone’s else’s life for the better or worse. I don’t know if anything will come out of Jarryd’s workout, but I do know that for a brief time it gave him hope of still trying to pursue his dream. I’ve always tried to help players get to that next level. My goals were always to help players secure a college scholarship first and then explore the professional side of baseball. Not having seen Jarryd in three years and then randomly seeing him at FAMU reaffirms my life long belief that everything happens for a reason.
I’m fortunate to work for Prospect Wire and have a substantially larger platform to help players achieve their dreams now.
After my notes back on December 23rd, like many I was on vacation through the New Year and just got back from the ABCA convention in Chicago. I did get to scout all the games at Florida A & M University and over the next three days I will have notes on each of the three teams, Navy, Red, and Orange.
Tate Lambert showed a better bat in the games than during bp making solid contact and a quick bat. Lambert, a lefty touched 80mph with minimal effort and clean delivery. Lambert’s curveball was 69mph.
Morgan Shuler, a RHP flashed an 80mph fastball with some life and arm side run. Shuler’s arm is very loose and easy. When his pitches were down and in the zone, he was very effective but time and time again he struggled with his release point and didn’t get great extension.
Javon Byrd had a couple of good at bats really making the pitchers work.
Cliff Bryant showed the most power in the games hitting a ball about 405 feet to dead center field. Bryant doesn’t run, but with a power left handed bat he should be able to play first base.
Stacy Jordan was one of the more interesting players I scouted. Jordan made hard contact several times and ran a 4.31 down the line once and a 4.66 on a wide turn.
Logan Dungey showed good instincts on the bases and plays hard.
Feleipe' Franks has a very projectable body. Franks is tall and lanky and just turned 15 during the camp as a freshman. His fastball touched 81mph. Franks showed good actions for his size in the infield and a decent idea at the plate. Time will tell if Frances becomes more of an elite type player, but for now you have to give him the benefit of the doubt because of his body and athleticism.
Glenn Davis, a RHP, stayed down in the zone with his pitches topping out at 68mph and Zack Britt touched 79mph with his fastball and 61mph with his curveball.