**2013 MLB Mock Draft**
Today, Major League Baseball teams will gather in Secaucus, N.J. for the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Countless MLB players developed their passion for the game playing on USSSA teams, and this year’s crop of draft hopefuls is no different. Many of 2013’s MLB prospect’s came through the USSSA pipeline. Look no further then Major League Baseball’s young phenom Bryce Harper. Harper, like many young baseball players played in the USSSA Elite World Series several times. His 13u So Cal Redwings went on to win it all in 2006. That is the same year our #4 pick Kohl Stewart won the 12u division of the Elite World Series. Be sure to check out our picks for the first round of this year’s draft. The draft will last three days from June 6-8 can be seen live on MLB Network.
1. Houston Astros – Colin Moran (3B)
Third baseman Moran earns the top spot in our draft. He played for the Taconic Rangers 13 & Under Major and Rockland Ravens 14 & Under AAA teams in New York, then played for the Iona Prep Gaels, where he was a two-time team MVP. Now at the University of North Carolina, Moran’s senior season includes a 348 batting average, 88 hits, 13 homeruns and 86 RBIs.
2. Chicago Cubs – Mark Appel (RHP)
This pitcher played USSSA ball in both Texas and California, ending with the Tri Valley Babe Ruth 14 & Under Major team in Dublin, Calif. He played four years at Stanford University, recording the most career strikeouts in school history with 372. Appel finished his college career with a 2.91 ERA and allowed just 10 homeruns.
3. Colorado Rockies – Jonathan Gray (RHP)
Gray played for three USSSA teams in Oklahoma from 2002 to 2006, including the Stillwater Lynx 14 & Under AAA team. He was selected in the 2010 and 2011 drafts by the Royals and Yankees respectively, but chose to play college ball instead. Currently in his junior season with the Oklahoma Sooners, Gray ended 2013 with a 1.59 ERA over 119 innings pitched.
4. Minnesota Twins – Kohl Stewart (RHP)
This Texas star’s USSSA credentials include 2006 and 2004 USSSA Elite World Series Defensive MVP awards and a 2005 USSSA Major World Series All Tournament Team honor for the Woodlands-based Banditos Black. Stewart is the highest-rated high school player on our list. A multi-sport athlete at St. Pius X High School in Houston, he’s committed to play football at Texas A&M this fall.
5. Cleveland Indians – Kris Bryant (3B/OF)
Perhaps you may have heard of Bryant’s Southern Nevada Bulldogs 14 & Under Major teammate Bryce Harper. Yes, that Bryce Harper. The pair played together in their hometown of Las Vegas. Now a 6’5” slugger for the University of San Diego, Bryant lead the NCAA with the most home runs this season with 31 – that’s 10 more than the next-highest player.
6. Miami Marlins – Braden Shipley (RHP)
Shipley is the only player in our draft with no USSSA experience, but he did play Little League and high school baseball in Medford, Ore., where he won the high school state championship in 2007. Coming off his junior season at the University of Nevada, Shipley was named the Mountain West Co-Pitcher of the Year. His 203 career strikeouts rank him sixth in Wolf Pack history.
7. Boston Red Sox – Clint Frazier (OF)
Though they may have played together for the Georgia Storm, the former teammates played for opposing high schools. Frazier and the Loganville Red Devils beat Meadows’ team 14-4 this season, with Frazier recording two hits and five RBIs during the game. The outfielder finished the season with a .485 batting average.
8. Kansas City Royals – Austin Meadows (OF)
This outfielder played 13 & Under and 14 & Under baseball with our no. 7 pick, Clint Frazier, in Snellville, Ga. He’s known for his power at the plate for the Grayson High School Rams, who went 15-9 this 2013 season. After his junior season, 6’3” Meadows was named to the 2012 Underclass 1st Team.
9. Pittsburgh Pirates – Reese McGuire (C)
McGuire played three years of USSSA ball in the Seattle area, ending with the Puyallup Knights 14 & Under AA team. Now a graduating senior at Kentwood High School in Kent, Wash., this lefty catcher is known for his quick reflexes behind the plate.
10. Toronto Blue Jays – J.P. Crawford (SS)
John Paul “JP” Crawford of Lakewood Calif. is a shortstop now, but made a name for himself in USSSA ball as a pitcher. He pitched 6 1/3 innings at the 2006 11 & Under Elite World Series and four innings in the 2007 12 & Under Elite World Series. For his senior year of high school, he was named a 2013 Rawlings 1st Team All-American.
11. New York Mets - DJ Peterson (1B/3B)
This infielder played for various Phoenix area USSSA teams from 2004-2010, ending with the LBE Black 18 & Under Senior Elite in 2010. Now at the University of New Mexico, he and the Lobos went 37-22 this season, with a 25-6 Mountain West Conference record. He started 60 of 61 games as a sophomore in 2012 and was the Mountain West Co-Player of the year. Last season, he was also a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award and the Dick Howser Trophy
12. Seattle Mariners - Ryne Stanek (RHP)
Playing for teams in both Kansas and Missouri, including the Mac N Seitz Red Sox 16 & Under Sophomore Elite out of Kansas City, Mo. in 2008, this 6’4” pitcher is definitely one to watch. Now coming off his junior season with the Razorbacks of the University of Arkansas, he finished the 2013 season with a 1.39 ERA over 97.1 innings (most innings pitched on the team) and 10-2 record. Last summer, he pitched for the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team, traveling to the Netherlands and helping the team earn a bronze medal at the Honkbal Week tournament.
13. San Diego Padres - Hunter Renfroe (OF)
Rich in USSSA history, Renfroe played eight years with the Terry, Miss.-based Mississippi Bandits from the time he was 9 until he played for the 18 & Under Senior Elite team in 2009. He was selected by the Boston Red Sox in the 31st round of the 2010 draft, but chose to play college ball instead. Now a Mississippi State University Bulldog, he’s listed not only as an outfielder, but a catcher and right-handed pitcher as well. He’s a two-time SEC Academic Honor Roll selection.
14. Pittsburgh Pirates - Dominic Smith (1B)
Smith played USSSA ball from 2006-2011, ending with the WLABA Tarheels 15 & Under Freshman Elite. This Southern California slugger is perhaps one of the most versatile players in this year’s draft. He’s predominately a first baseman for Junípero Serra High School, but he also has a killer arm to play outfield and can throw a 92-mph fastball. Plus he can really crush the ball at the plate.
15. Arizona Diamondbacks - Alex Gonzalez (RHP)
After playing for the Wellington, Fla.-based Warriors 14 & Under AAA team in 2006, Gonzalez found success with the Boca Raton Community High School Wildcats, where he lead his team to a distract championship his junior year. Now a starter at Oral Roberts University in Oklahoma, he threw two complete games as a sophomore and was named All-Summit League Second Team last season.
16. Philadelphia Phillies - Phillip Ervin (OF)
Before playing for Leroy High School in southwest Alabama, this speedy outfielder played for the Bama Bombers Senior 18 & Under Senior Elite team in 2008. Now a Stamford University Bulldog, he started all 64 games in center field last season and returned as the starter for his junior year in 2013. Last summer, he was named MVP of the Cape Cod League.
17. Chicago White Sox - Austin Wilson (OF)
This Southern Californian outfielder played for the Coastline Colts 14 & Under AAA team, based out of Santa Monica, in 2005, before playing high school ball for the Harvard-Westlake School. Now coming off his junior season at Sanford University, Wilson finished 2013 with a .288 batting average and a .983 fielding percentage. As a sophomore, he was named Honorable Mention All-Pac-12.
18. Philadelphia Phillies - Sean Manaea (LHP)
Hailing from Indiana, Manaea’s USSSA baseball career began with the Duneland Flyers 14 & Under AAA in 2007 and ended with Hammond Chiefs 18 & Under Senior Elite team in 2009. Now at Indiana State University, he just finished his junior season with 93 strikeouts over 73.1 innings and a 1.47 ERA in 13 starts. He has the third-most career strikeouts at ISU, with 290 total.
19. St. Louis Cardinals - Devin Williams (RHP)
Williams played four consecutive seasons of USSSA baseball in the St. Louis area from 2006-2009 before playing for the Hazlewood West High School Wildcats. He’s stacked with a fastball, breaking ball and changeup. Williams is committed to Mizzou, but he already has his dream car picked out if he signs after the draft: a white Range Rover.
20. Detroit Tigers - Chris Anderson (RHP)
In 2006, Anderson played for the Minnesota-based Centennial Cougars 14 & Under AAA team. He was named Mr. Baseball and the Louisville Slugger Player of the Year for Minnesota in high school. He’s studying sports management at Jacksonville University, where he recorded 101 strikeouts over 104.2 innings this season.
21. Tampa Bay Rays - Nicholas Ciuffo (C)
Catcher Ciuffo played USSSA ball from 2006-2009 for the Mt. Pleasant-based Diamond Warriors in South Carolina. During his senior season at Lexington High school, he batted an impressive .468 average and was named the Gatorade South Carolina Baseball Player of the Year. He’s signed a National Letter of Intent to play for the South Carolina Gamecocks.
22. Baltimore Orioles - Ian Clark (LHP)
Clark, a 6’2” pitcher from San Diego, has a fastball that reaches up to 94 mph. Last summer, he pitched for Team USA and won the 18 & Under World Championship. Finishing his senior season at James Madison High School, Clark finished 7-2 for the Warhawks, striking out 105 batters throughout the season. Sticking close to home, he is currently committed to the University of San Diego.
23. Texas Rangers - Hunter Harvey (RHP)
This hurler played 11 & Under AA ball for the Mooreseville Racers in North Carolina in 2006. For his 2013 senior season, Harvey went 8-0 for the Bandys High School Trojans, ending the season with 116 strikeouts and a .38 ERA. He is no stranger to pro baseball; his father is former MLB closer Bryan Harvey, and his brother Kris was drafted by the Florida Marlins in 2005.
24. Oakland Athletics - Josh Hart (OF)
Liburn, Ga.’s Hart played just one year of USSA baseball for the Shiloh Heat 12 & Under AAA and Mentium Athletics 12 & Under Major teams, both outside of Atlanta in 2007. He and the Parkview High School Panthers won the Georgia 5A State Championship in 2011 and 2012, and are hoping for a three-peat for Hart’s 2013 senior season.
25. San Francisco Giants - Eric Jagielo (3B)
Third baseman Jagielo played his entire USSSA baseball career with the Downers Grove Longshots, based out of Downers Grove, Ill. He currently plays for the University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish, where he recorded 43 RBIs, 71 hits and a .310 batting average during the 2012 season. Jagielo was recently named a semifinalist for the 2013 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award.
26. New York Yankees - Phil Bickford (RHP)
The ace from Westlake Village, Calif. played for three youth teams in Southern California, including the South Coast Sluggers 13 & Under AA team, from 2006-2009 before playing high school ball. This year, Bickford lead the Oaks Christian High School Lions to the school’s first Southern Section Division IV championship, where he recorded 18 strikeouts in the title game. He finished the season with a near-perfect 12-1 record and 146 strikeouts.
27. Cincinnati Reds - Matt Krook (LHP)
This 6’4 pitcher is definitely one to watch in this year’s draft. He’s made a name for himself in his home state of California with a fastball that reaches well over 90 mph. Krook, a graduate of St. Ignatius High School in San Francisco, ended his six-season USSSA career with the Trosky Baseball White 18 & Under Senior Elite in 2011.
28. St. Louis Cardinals - Cavan Biggio (2B)
Texas native Biggio is the son of former MLB player Craig Biggio, who played his entire 20-year professional career with the Houston Astros. Cavan played for the Houston Outlaws and Houston Wranglers before playing for the St. Thomas High School Eagles. As of now, he’s committed to the University of Notre Dame.
29. Tampa Bay Rays - Oscar Mercado (SS)
Mercado played seven years of USSSA for various Tampa-based teams as well as the FTB Pride 18 & Under Senior Elite team out of Kissimmee, Fla. He’s considered to be one of the top shortstops in this year’s draft class. If drafted by the Rays, he’s certain to become a hometown hero.
30. Texas Rangers - Travis Demeritte (IF/RHP)
This infielder and pitcher is known for his quick bat and versatility on the field. He played most of his youth baseball with the Georgia Bandits and East Cobb Astros. He was named to the 2013 Rawlings 1st Team All-American Southeast 1st Team. He’s currently committed to the University of South Carolina.
31. Atlanta Braves - Ryan Eades (RHP)
Louisiana pitcher Eades played for various USSSA teams from 2002 to 2007, including the Northshore Varsity 17 & Under Junior Elite team. He played his college eligibility at LSU, where he studied sports administration and was named to the SEC All-Defensive Team in 2012. He was selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 19th round of the 2010 MLB draft, but chose to continue his college career with the Tigers.
32. New York Yankees - Billy McKinney (OF)
This outfielder played nine years of USSSA baseball, ending with the Dallas-based D-Bat Mustangs Blue 14 & Under Major team in 2009 before playing for the Plano West High School Wolves, where he hit six homeruns and led his team to the class 5A semifinals this season.
33. New York Yankees - Dustin Peterson (SS/3B)
Growing up in the Phoenix area, Peterson began his USSSA baseball career with the Arizona Blaze at age 11, and most recently played for LBE Baseball Club Black. The Gilbert High School student definitely comes from a baseball family; his older brother DJ is projected to be picked 11th by the New York Mets. Perhaps a Subway Series is in this family’s future.
The United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA), headquartered in Osceola County, Florida, USSSA is the World’s Largest Multi-sport Athletic Organization. Founded in 1968, USSSA has grown to over 3.7 million participants, competing in 13 nationally sanctioned sports including Baseball, Fastpitch, Slow Pitch, Karate, Basketball, Soccer and more! For more information on USSSA and to register your team visit USSSA.com. Also be sure to visit USSSAToday.com for the latest USSSA News!
Don'r forget to interact with USSSA with Social Media - Facebook.com/USSSAToday & Twitter.com/USSSAToday & Instagram #USSSA
For more information or questions email firstname.lastname@example.org