this week in unintentionally grim-sounding recruiting headlines
This might be a bit too OT, but it is a pretty bizarre pro sports story.
The St. Louis Cardinals are currently under investigation by the FBI for hacking into the Houston Astros databases. Apparently the hackers were not too smart and left rather obvious traces of evidence that made it easy for the FBI.
While cheating/spying isn't anything new in professional sports, this seems like a particularly peculiar incident. Any speculations on what the consequences are here?
The NCBWA announced its All-American teams today and Mr. Everything Carmen Benedetti was named a First Teamer.
Michigan has only had 15 First Team All-Americans ever. Benedetti is the first in 27 years.
The last was Jim Abbott in 1988 when he was named a First Team All-American by The Sporting News.
Michigan has had its share of 2nd and 3rd team All-Americans during the drought, but never a First Team All-American.
Benedetti was named 1st team Freshman All-American last season by Collegiate Baseball.
Michigan likely has him for only one more season as he will probably jump to the pros once he's drafted next year at this time like some of his teammates were yesterday and today.
Here's the list of Michigan's 15 First Team All-Americans-
|1971||Jim Burton||P||Sporting News|
|1979||Steve Howe||P||Sporting News|
|1979||Rick Leach||OF||Sporting News|
|1982||Jim Paciorek||OF||ABCA, Baseball America|
|1983||Chris Sabo||2B||Baseball America, Sporting News|
|1985||Barry Larkin||SS||ABCA, Baseball America, Sporting News|
|1985||Mike Watters||OF||Baseball America|
|1986||Casey Close||OF||ABCA, Baseball America|
|1988||Jim Abbott||P||Sporting News|
Junior 2B and RHP Jake Cronenworth was drafted today by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 7th round of the MLB Draft. He was the 13th pick of the 7th round, pick 208 overall.
Raoul has diary post about Michigan baseball right now and the pick was mentioned there, but I felt it deserved its own post.
Cronenworth was expected to go today on day 2 and is Baseball America's 194th overall prospect, so 208 seems like a reasonable landing spot for him. Coach Bakich said he expects Cronenworth and the other underclassmen expected to be drafted all to sign.
Cronenworth will be a pitcher with the Rays assuming he does sign. This MLB.com video gives a brief souting report on him, saying he's expected to be a starter initally but eventually end up in the bullpen. They say he has the best splitter in the draft but due to playing 2B so often and some injuries, the rest of his stuff is underdeveloped.
Senior CF Jackson Glines was just drafted in round 10, pick 292 (7th in the 10th round) by the White Sox. Glines wasn't even included in BA's top 500 prospects so this is nice for him to go so early.
Congrats to Jake, Jackson and the rest of the Wolverines who are going to get drafted!
The 2015 MLB Draft will be held Monday (rounds 1 & 2), Tuesday (3-10), and Wednesday (11-40). Here's a preview from a Michigan perspective, covering both current players and members of the 2015 recruiting class.
Three of Michigan's top juniors—Jacob Cronenworth, Evan Hill, and Travis Maezes—are expected to be drafted. On his appearance last week on WTKA, Wolverine head coach Erik Bakich said that it's looking like Cronenworth and Maezes will be drafted on day 2 and Hill on day 3, and he's anticipating that all three will sign. Baseball America's top 500 for the draft has Cronenworth at #194, Maezes at #376, and Hill at #381. The only senior that Bakich mentioned as a possible draftee was Jackson Glines. He might go late on day 2 or on day 3. (Note on Cronenworth, a two-way player at Michigan: he's likely to be drafted as a pitcher.)
With the first two recruiting classes he put together at Michigan, Bakich had the fortune to not lose any of his recruits to the draft. This year, two players in particular have been garnering draft buzz. First, here are the 11 Michigan signees or commits that I'm aware of.
Jack Bredeson — 6-6 RHP/3B, Arrowhead HS (Hartland, WI)
Andrew David — 5-10 SS/2B, Massillon Washington HS (OH)
Charlie Donovan — 5-11 SS/2B, Westmont HS (IL)
Jonathan Engelmann — 6-4 OF, Burlingame HS (CA)
George Hewitt — 6-3 3B/MIF, Salisbury School (CT); hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Ricky Karcher — 6-4 RHP, Saline HS (MI)
Ben Keizer — 6-2 LHP, Portage Northern HS (MI)
Troy Miller — 6-3 RHP, Soquel HS (CA)
Joe Pace — 6-0 OF/2B, Notre Dame HS (Sherman Oaks, CA)
Ako Thomas — 5-9 2B/SS, Mount Carmel HS (Chicago, IL)
Will Tribucher — 6-2 LHP, San Clemente HS (CA)
Note that Bakich said last week on WTKA that the class actually includes 13 players—5 pitchers and 8 fielders—so there are 2 I'm unaware of. It's clear that the California pipeline continues to be tapped, and in fact Bakich said that 5 of the 13 are from that state. (It wouldn't be surprising if the missing California commit is a juco, following in the footsteps of Glines and Cody Bruder.)
Back to the draft: Jonathan Engelmann seems to be the member of the class most likely to be drafted and sign with an MLB club. Baseball America has him at #253. He also appears in MLB's Draft Tracker, with this comment:
A former infielder who outgrew the dirt and moved to a corner outfield spot, Engelmann is a strong athletic high school hitter with some tools you can dream on. The University of Michigan commit is still growing and getting stronger, learning to use his 6-foot-4 frame to its fullest potential. An aggressive hitter at the plate, there is still work to be done on Engelmann's mechanics and timing. But he is able to make loud contact and there is plenty of raw power for the right-handed hitter to tap into. Engelmann is an average runner with enough arm to be an athletic right fielder in the future, though he might play center field should he go on to play for the Wolverines. Engelmann is very much potential over performance right now, but his high upside is bound to draw interest.
Charlie Donovan is the other one with significant draft buzz, coming in at #405 on Perfect Game's draft ranking. Prep Baseball Report (see under "Comments"), which has him ranked #16 in the 2015 class in their overall rankings (covering about two dozen states), is more bullish on him, calling him (see under "Comments") a "top three–round talent" and that he's a "likely early round pick in next month’s MLB Draft, signability put aside." According to Big Ten blogger Chris Webb, Donovan recently worked out for the White Sox, but Webb thinks Donovan will end up at Michigan.
Troy Miller is another one to keep an eye on. He's listed in the MLB Draft Tracker, although less prominently than Engelmann and Donovan. Overall, it should be an interesting few days of draft watching.
At first I was going to indicate this as OT but since Kate Upton is one of our most dedicated fans, it is certainly not OT. And I'm assuming this picture doesn't violate the new, more strict MGoPolicy regarding the posting of lady parts.
My 13 year old son and I were at the Apple Store at the Somerset Collection (yes, for those of you who aren't from the area...it's not just a mall...it's a "Collection"). His laptop needed a new fan (kudos to the Genius folks for getting him a new fan installed within about 15 minutes), so we were standing at the back of the store at a table near the Genius Bar.
Within a few minutes there was a discernable murmer throughout the store...and most of the males near us were pointing and looking toward the front of the store. Someone indicated that it was, indeed, Kate and JV.
Hormones haven't kicked in - and we've seen JV around Birmingham quite a bit - so my son wan't too interested in their presence. Even though I'm old enough to be her father, I must admit I was intrigued to see her in person.
I hope that taking of this picture doesn't make me a creepy old guy. I felt I owed it to my MGoBrethren to get the best picture possible...and this was the best I could do without making it totally obvious I was taking a picture of them.
Michigan Baseball's amazing run concluded today with a 13-4 loss to national 3 seed Louisville in the Championship of the NCAA Louisville Regional.
Michigan began the season looking like they might be in a dogfight just to make the B1G Tournament. They lost their season opening series to Long Beach State, were swept by Davidson and had embarrassing losses to Akron, EMU and Tennessee Tech.
This team exceeded expectations in the B1G regular season, finising in a 3rd place tie and at one point having a shot at an at-large bid.
However, losses to bad teams like Northwestern and the dagger to Michigan's RPI in a shutout loss at Horizon League Illinois-Chicago all but shatter any NCAA Tournament hopes.
This team then closed the regular season by upsetting #13 Oklahoma State on senior day after being blown out in the first two games of the series. This launched them on a run where they would upset FOUR NCAA Tournament teams including #4 Illinois who had won 27 of their previous 28 heading into the game.
Michigan captured their first B1G Tournament Championship in seven years and rendered all those bad losses in the regular season irrelevant by securing the B1G's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Michigan then demolished regional 2 seed Bradley on Friday, 10-5, in a game considered an upset and would drop a tough 4-3 game to regional host and No. 3 overall seed Louisville on the road. Michigan beat Bradley today 4-3 in a game where they needed to use several pitchers and had nothing left in the tank for the doubleheader with Louisville.
This Michigan team deserves to be applauded and recognized for their accomplishments this season as they have put this great program--Michigan's oldest--back into the NCAA Tournament.
Every season under Erik Bakich the win total and B1G Conference finish has gone up. The Maize and Blue are going to have their best season in a long, long time next year IMO.