Baseball Scoutz played host to its Georgia All-Star Game at Georgia Southern on Saturday and Sunday. It was a weekend featuring some of the better high school players in the state, including an Augusta-area team that showed some talent.
I was able to catch all three Saturday games, including the night game that featured the Augusta-area players against mostly Atlanta-area kids. A few stood out from the game.
Lincoln County's Holden Carruth started on the mound the first two innings. He sat 83-85 and touched 87 with fairly easy gas. His arm path is a little long and he shows the ball some, but he gets decent momentum and delivers the ball with little effort.
Carruth struggled with control in the first inning, but he settled in with a better second. His breaking ball showed the ability to have tight spin and break, and he snapped off a solid one to the inside corner on a right-handed batter. He's still gaining a feel for the pitch, but the potential is there for it to be a quality offering. Carruth was one of the better arms to appear Saturday. He had some of the easier gas and quicker arms of the day. He just needs to continue developing the breaker and repeat his mechanics.
Westside's David Hagelston had one of the better bodies in the showcase, standing 6-foot-4, 205 pounds, with the potential for added muscle in the upper body. Hagelston uses his strength for solid pull power, roping a double to left-center that reached the wall during the game. He can cover the inner half well with good bat speed. I wasn't able to get a look at how he handles the outer half, and his swing left me wondering what his oppo-pop is like; it's geared toward pulling with authority.
Hagelston has been clocked at 87 on the mound in the past, and he showed a good breaking ball that he commanded pretty well.
Lakeside's Cole Pittman was one of the more dynamic lefties in the game, touching 84 with effort in the delivery. The fastball had solid tailing action, and he combined it with a decent changeup/breaking ball mix. Pittman has the body and quick arm to develop a very good fastball.
Evans' David Rivera was perhaps the smallest pitcher of the entire day, but the left-hander impressed me greatly. Rivera sat 79-82 and touched 84, showing good tailing action and the ability to spot the pitch on the corners. He paired it with the best breaking ball of the day from my angle, sitting mid-to-high-60s with good spin and two-plane break. He commanded both pitches well and also used deception in the delivery to overcome the lack of velocity. Rivera won't blow hitters away and is pretty slight on the mound, but he overcomes it with good stuff and command.
Evans catcher Matt Anderson popped a 2-flat during pregame drills. He has a quick release and good arm, and his footwork behind the plate is pretty solid.
Lakeside's Chandler Corley raked a double in the game, showing solid bat speed and quick hands at the plate. Evans' Colin Dominy singled home a run.
The previous two games on Saturday featured several talented players from Georgia. One of the more talented arms came from Union Grove's Cameron Williams. The big right-hander touched 88, the top velo of the day, while spinning some pretty good breaking balls. Williams struggled with control in two innings, overthrowing at times and losing his arm slot, but the velo is obvious.
Duluth's Dominique Jackson was one of the more athletic players to appear. The third baseman showed a solid defensive profile with a quick release, good arm and great footwork. He has the arm for the left side, and I wouldn't mind seeing him try shortstop. Jackson showed an approach at the plate and sprayed the ball with authority. He has above-average to plus speed.
Greenbrier's Connor Hoover showed authority and bat speed in his left-handed swing. He stays on the ball well and has good pop from the left side.
South Paulding's Austin Godfrey is an undersized, 2015 left-hander, but he dialed it up to 86 in his two innings of work. He has good drive and momentum in the motion, he maintains his arm slot and has a strong front-side finish. Godfrey commands his fastball well and flashes a good breaking ball, but the hook was inconsistent. There's no denying 86 from a left-side 2015, no matter the size.
Crisp County's Landon Whitman had one of the quicker arms on the day, touching 85 from the left side. The 6-foot-5 hurler had a quality breaking ball around 72 with tight spin and two-plane break. Whitman needs refinement in the delivery, including a better finish, and there's effort in the motion, but he has a quick arm and dials it up to 85 with tons of projection from the left side.
East Coweta's Jaquez Williams was perhaps the best power bat in the showcase, showing bat speed and pop to all fields. He has a quiet load and strong hands. Williams stands above the rest size-wise, reminding me some of Ryan Howard. He's relegated to first base, but the bat should play.