...says Denzel Valentine of Big Ten Tourney favorite MSU, which is 5-7 in its last 12 games. Cumong, man.
"We're excited about our 2013 schedule," first-year head coach Erik Bakich said. "Our non-conference slate should be very competitive in preparation for Big Ten play. We are fortunate to travel to different parts of the country with trips to California, Florida, South Carolina, and have a tremendous opportunity to play in Citi Field."
- Feb. 15-17: open season with three games at California
- Feb. 24: exhibition against the New York Mets at Port St. Lucie, Fla.
- March 7-10: trip to San Deigo to play four games against four different opponents; this trip and the one to Cal might well pay off on the recruiting trail as Bakich has already gotten one California commitment in the 2014 class
- March 15-16: two games at Coastal Carolina
- March 22: home opener against Western Illinois
- March 26: game against Yale to be played in Citi Field
Since putting together this baseball recruiting update, I discovered another Michigan baseball commit, and this prospect may be the most highly ranked in the 2013 class, other than perhaps Jackson Lamb. Ethan Cohen is a 5-11, 180-pounder from Thousand Oaks, California, attending Keystone Academy. He verbally committed to Michigan in August.
Cohen is a speedy outfielder with impressive rankings from Perfect Game: #448 nationally, #80 in California, and #86 at his position on the national level. His Perfect Game profile includes this scouting report from June 2012:
Report: Ethan Cohen is a 2013 OF with a 5-11 180 lb. frame from Thousand Oaks, CA who attends Keystone Academy. Long lean athletic build, room to get stronger. 6.65 runner, aggressive in the outfield, shows his athleticism, long loose arm action, very good arm strength. Left handed hitter, smooth easy swing, has present bat speed with more to come with added strength, shows gap power, stays inside and drives the ball to left centerfield. Toolsy player with lots of projection, should continue to improve. Good student.
PG Grade: 9.5
The 9.5 grade (out of 10) is impressive, as PG's rating system has a 9 as a "potential top 10 round pick and/or highest level college prospect" and a 10 as a "potential very high draft pick and/or elite level college prospect." The downside, of course, is the possibility that Cohen does end up being a high 2013 draft pick and goes pro right out of high school.
Hello: Jayce Vancena
Prep Baseball Repot (PBR) reported in mid-October the verbal commitment for the 2014 class of Jayce Vancena, a 6-4, 210-lb. right-handed pitcher out of Lake H.S. (near Millbury, Ohio, southeast of Toledo). His PBR profile has this scouting report:
Vancena is a big, projectable right-handed pitcher and definite follow over the next two years. On the mound, he uses an over the top arm slot and short arm action. With his delivery, he hides the ball well. His fastball sits between 79-82 mph. When throwing his 59-62 mph curveball, he tends to slow down his arm speed. His changeup, which sits between 69-72 mph, shows some fading action. At the plate, the right-handed hitter shows pull tendencies has he creates solid contact with power potential.
Hello: Oliver Jaskie
Also in mid-October, another 2014 prospect committed to Michigan: Oliver Jaskie, a 6-4 southpaw pitcher from Forest Hills H.S. (Ada Twp., near Grand Rapids). In addition his profile, PBR has this brief scouting report from a September scouting notes item:
Jaskie continues to show that he knows how to pitch and pitch effectively. His breaking ball was tighter than what he have seen in the past and his change up again was a really effective pitch. His change is advanced for such a young age.
An earlier rundown indicates that PBR had Jaskie ranked #12 in the state:
Jaskie continues to improve this summer. A Midwest Futures Games invitee, Jaskie is an intriguing lefty that is only going to get better. His velo might not jump off the page right now but he knows how to pitch. His changeup is his best pitch and he uses his height, 6-foot-4, to create good tilt. Jaskie is currently ranked No. 12 in his class.
Hello: Grant Reuss
Apparently the most highly ranked of this trio of 2014 commits is Grant Reuss, another left-handed pitcher, who's 6-5, 210 lbs., out of Cranbrook Kingswood in Bloomfield Hills. Reuss verbally committed to the Wolverines earlier today. PBR has Reuss as their #3 prospect in Michigan for 2014 and offered the following scouting report in this July rundown:
Reuss is one of the best lefties in his class and currently checks in at No. 4 [now #3] ] in the class of 2014. He has been up to 89 mph in the past and he was 86-88 mph on this day. Reuss continues to raise his stock. Standing at 6-foot-6 Reuss is long and loose. He also has the makings of a good breaking ball. Consistency in his delivery will be the key to Reuss' development.
MBP ranks Reuss #2 in the state, and they also have a profile page for him with several videos.
With the addition of these three commits, Erik Bakich now has six commits for the class of 2014, with the others being Jake Bivens, Brandon Hughes, and Drew Lugbauer (see the previous recruiting update for details).
Michigan's 2013 baseball class includes about a dozen commits, including Ethan Cohen.
Let's make this better than last night, ok? Go Tigers!
Game 1 pitching matchup - Verlander vs Zito
It's official. Family confirms noted Michigan fan and all-around superbabe Kate Upton is dating Tigers ace Justin Verlander.
At least someone on the Tigers is scoring. Ba-zing!