2014 NBC Tournament: Weekend One Thoughts

I watched six games this weekend at the NBC World Series in Wichita KS. I have covering some teams for Baseball America (Jayhawk and MINK teams) which will be published at a later date. Here are some players who stood out to me on some teams I am not covering.

Scott Merrill (Prev. Neosho County CC, AR Little Rock) is going to be a SR at King College (Tenn). While having some control issue, he flashed a 88-91 mph fastball and curve with a great break. If he could find a way to just throw the two pitches consistently, he could be a good bullpen arm.

Timothy Williams on the San Diego Force stood out for his speed. The small left-handed hitter made several great diving catches in the outfield. He could hit with line drive power and I timed him at 4.3 to 1B. He will be a Senior at George Fox University (CA) this fall. He has hit .351/.441/547 for career at GFU.

Tyler Staub (University of Texas, San Antonio) is 6’4” 205 right handed Junior this up coming season who played for the Albuquerque Dialbos. He was the person who looked the part of a ball player more than anyone else I saw over the weekend. Batting 4th and playing shortstop helped to stereotype him. That was about it though. He was smart enough to lay down a perfect bunt which stopped on the line half way to 3B when the infielders were playing in the outfield grass. Nothing else.

Ryan Baca for the Greeley Grays was my favorite pitcher to watch over the weekend. He is heavy left-handed pitcher who just attacked the El Dorado Broncos. A David Wells clone. He threw almost exclusively a 82-84 mph fastball (73 mph curve missed in), which kept El Dorado off balanced the whole time.

Marco Blanchard of the Puerto Rico National Collegiate Team. The left-hander used a Johnny Cueto like twisting pitching motion with his back to plate. His fastball was 86-91 mph straight fastball with a 84-86 mph slider and 80 mph change. While he will be a freshman at Ecclesia College, he is already 22-years-old.

Abdiel Alicea is a switch hitting freshman (uncommitted) who played short stop for the Puerto Rico National Collegiate Team. While he wasn’t challenged in the field, I timed him at 3.85 to 1B on a bunt from the left side.

James Gutierres is another uncommitted freshman for the Puerto Rico National Collegiate Team. He is all field and no bat… at least of what I saw of him. Probably the best outfield defender. I timed the right hander at 4.55 to 1B.

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