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By: Don Engelhardt
Date: 03/28/2000
In 1994, I traveled to Columbus to watch Massillon play Toledo Start for the state title. What a glorious time it was, watching Dan Siemetz and the rest of the Tigers. I wondered at the time when we'd be coming back. Well folks, this year's team is absolutely loaded and it just might be that time.

Head Coach Tim Ridgley welcomes back eight starters from last year's 18-8-1 team, including three veteran pitchers. There is also a pre-season All-American in this group. With this combination, coupled with last summer's 55-11 record playing as the Massillon Orangemen, there is tremendous excitement in the Tiger camp."This is a strong senior class which has been playing together for four years," says Ridgley. "There are a lot of fine outstanding human beings along with talented baseball players. There is a good core of pitchers to select from including five left-handed and six right-handed. Hitting the ball is also a strong aspect of this team with balanced right and left-handed hitters. And good solid defense. We have a lot of choices as far as the players who play each individual position and who will play on the field."
The infielders can only be described as solid. Around the horn it will be senior Anthony Battle at first, senior Todd Helline at second, junior Jason Savage at shortstop, and senior Chad Marceric at third. All four of these players started last year.
Battle will hit cleanup. If he comes even close to last year's stats (.434 ave. and 25 rbi), he will be a absolute force in this position. Last year he played in left field and returns to the position he is most suited for. He is a big, strong kid and hits with power.
Heline is strong in every facet of the game, accordingly to Ridgley. He has quick hands and exceptional speed and he knows how to get on base. Expect the green light to steal in almost any situation. But it doesn't stop there. Todd has also been selected as a pre-season 2nd Team All-American.
The most versatile of this group has to be Savage. Not only does he play the high-profile position of shortstop, he is also an outstanding hitter and pitcher. Last year he averaged .424 and had an on-base percentage of 56%. That's why he will hit in the number two spot. "He is the headiest kid on the team," says Coach Ridgley. "He will play through any kind of adversity."
Marceric is the power hitter of the group, leading the team last year with 11 homers. He also averaged .388 and drove in 29 runs. Chad is a 3-year starter and a considered by his coach as a solid player.
Backing up the infielders will be juniors B.J. Budd, Mark Andrews, and Chris Franks, and sophomore Dan Melito, who started a few games last year. Melito will fill in for Savage when he pitches in addition to being the designated hitter. So he should be in there most of the time.
Senior Dan Ackerman returns for the third year at right field, where he batted .477 last year including six doubles. The leadoff hitter, he reached base last year 61% of the time. "You know you're going to get a great effort every time he comes to the park," says Ridgley.
There are a couple of new starters at the other two outfield positions, juniors Jason Abbot and Ryan Ridgley. According to the coach, Ryan is "probably one of our best defensive outfielders on the team." That's why he will play at center field. Senior Jon Stanke and junior Chris Franks will back up this group.
The deepest aspect of this team is the pitching staff. "We have a lot pitchers back," says Ridgley. "We need someone to emerge as our number one from both the right side and the left side and become a dominant force, a guy who we can count on and him delivering." Leading this group are three players who combined to pitch 109 innings last year: senior Jason Weick and juniors Jason Savage and B.J. Budd.
Weick posted an excellent 3.32 era last year and fanned 22% of the batters he faced. However, he has had to overcome some bad luck lately. After battling back from mononucleosis during the winter, he recently dislocated his shoulder, which has set him back some more. He may be cleared soon, but it's most important to have him at tournament time. So he will be eased in slowly.
Savage had statistics last year similar to Weick's with a 3.50 era and 25% strike out percentage. Jason is not afraid of anyone. A left-hander, he has good command of his pitches and brings a full arsenal to the mound. The coach calls him a "fireball" and is really happy with his progress.
Budd, another left-hander, has really matured physically which has improved his velocity. He also sports a variety of pitching deliveries designed to keep the hitters off balance. Last year he exhibited good control, walking only 9% of his opponents.
All three of these pitchers are slated to start this year along with senior David Broome, who has emerged after seeing only limited time on the mound last year. The top relievers are Senior Chris Swenson, junior Jason Abbott, and junior Josh Strubel. Ridgley calls Strubel the hardest thrower on the team.
Other pitchers who will see action this year include senior Jim Barkan, and juniors Mike Groff, Chris Franks and Andrew Marks, plus sophomore Dan Melito.
Behind the plate will be senior Charles Hendricks, a returning starter who batted .388 last year. Junior Drew Feucht, who is an excellent catcher himself, will back him up.
The focus this year will be to put out the nine players that play together the best, not necessarily the best nine players the team. "Through the course of the year we need to overcome bumps in the road such as sickness, injuries, and slumps plus others," says Ridgley. "Each and every player on this team will have a chance to win a game for us. Our success will depend upon our players meeting these challenges and being successful at them. Newcomers will have to step it up and the others will have to lead."
Coach Ridgley returns for his seventh year at the helm on the strength of a 100-56 record. Supporting him will be assistant varsity coach Jamie Marceric, pitching coach Jerry Vance, JV coach Rich McClellan, and freshman coach Jerry McArthur.
With the opener just days away, excitement is growing in the Tiger camp. And why not. With an outstanding group of athletes and a seasoned coaching staff, the ingredients are there to make a serious run at the state title.

By: Don Engelhardt
Date: 05/23/2000
It seems a little early to be holding an awards banquet, for the Tigers' season is not quite over. Friday they travel to Thurman Munson stadium for a regional semifinal game against Dublin Coffman. But maybe its not too early for some back patting, for these guys certainly deserve it.

Bruce Weick, father of senior player Jason Weick, emceed the event. After thanking his Booster Club staff and giving his own applauds to the players, it was time for Head Coach Tim Ridgley to address the packed audience.
Coach started by acknowledging the efforts of Frank Shertzer who organizes the summer Orangeman teams. "The summer program is what makes this work," said Ridgley. "This year's players have played close to 300 games in four years. It's so difficult to coach a high school baseball team on only 27 games."
Then it was time to address the seniors. "One of the most difficult things about coaching is that these kids are gone and those ties that you have with those kids are severed," said Ridgley. "I don't know anybody who works as hard as they do over the course of the year."
In past years Ridgley was concerned about his teams peaking too early and not fairing well come tournament time. This year he changed the routine by rearranging the agenda to relax a bit more. The philosophy was to put a lot of pressure on them early, then back off when the tournament comes. "I smiled at them at the GlenOak game and said 'go have some fun'," said Ridgley. "I don't smile. It's not me. It must have worked." Indeed it did, for the Tigers not only beat the Golden Eagles, they went on to defeat 1999 state qualifier North Canton, Warren Howland, and Perry.
Then he talked about the respect the Tigers have earned this year. When the state's second ranked team, Mansfield Madison, came in for a doubleheader, both teams were tuning up for tournament games. Neither team intended to go with their best pitcher in either game. But after Jim Barkan shut down Madison 11-3, the visitors changed course and started their ace in the second game for fear of being shutout for the day. That's respect.
Then it was time for awards. Since the season is still underway and many category awards are still being contested, Ridgley limited it to varsity letters and tournament championship medals. But he did make a pointed statement. "This team is not about awards. It's the first team I've had that's not been like that. They're very focused on their mission. They have one big heart beat and it's pounding hard."
The final award of the night went to his son, Ryan. "It was a difficult situation to start your own son," said dad. "But he's done a great job this year. He filled a big void. Defense I wasn't worried about. It was hitting. But he batted close to .300 this year."
The future looks bright for the Massillon baseball program. The freshman team finished with a record of 18-8 and batted over .300 as a team.
The JV team had a phenomenal year running off 21 straight wins before dropping the final two. They outscored their opponents 263-63, had an on-base percentage of 50% and batted .406 with eight players hitting over .400. Also, the pitching staff struck out 193 opposing batters and recorded an ERA of 2.35. The Tigers won't rebuild next year, they'll reload.
Good luck to all of the Tigers against Dublin Coffman.

Coach Tim Ridgley
By: Don Engelhardt

Date: 05/23/2000
Coach Ridgley addresses the packed audience at the awards banquet held at the Massillon Elks. Shown below are some photos of the event held in honor of the team to recognize their outstanding accomplishments.

By: Don Engelhardt

Date: 05/23/2000
Shown here are the trophies and medals awarded to the Massillon Tiger baseball team for the sectional and district championships. The varsity team is pictured below, with each holding their varsity letter or award.

Row 1: Chad Marceric, Dan Ackerman, Jim Barkan, and Anthony Battle.
Row 2: Jason Abbott, Charles Hendricks, Chris Swenson, and Jason Savage.
Row 3: David Broome, Todd Helline, B.J. Budd, and Jason Weick.
Row 4: Joe Nadzam, Jon Stanke, Andrew Marks, and Aaron Miller.
Row 5: Josh Strubel, Dan Melito, Drew Feucht, and Ryan Ridgley.

Anthony Battle
By: Don Engelhardt
Date: 05/24/2000
Anthony Battle is the current hitting leader with a .403 average, followed closely by Chad Marceric at .388 and Jason Savage at .386. But with Savage's .500 average in the four tournament games, the order may change by season's end.

Here are the regular season baseball stats with the players shown in the order of their batting position. Following that are the stats of the substitute players. The Tigers are out-hitting the opposition by over 100 percentage points.
1 Helline 87 19 31 12 13 7 17 41% .356
2 Marceric 88 18 34 19 7 9 15 49% .388
3 Ackerman 89 16 29 10 9 11 11 41% .326
4 Battle 77 19 31 14 14 15 14 53% .403
5 Hendricks 71 18 26 17 10 3 9 48% .366
6 Savage 67 16 26 13 7 5 10 46% .388
7 Abbott 67 12 24 14 14 10 4 46% .358
8 Ridgley 71 21 20 11 24 5 4 38% .282
9 Melito 52 10 17 9 12 12 3 48% .327
Mass Total 669 139 238 119 110 77 87 46% .356
Opp. Total 702 92 174 187 116 36% .248

Budd 28 9 6 4 1 4 3 38% .214
Feucht 21 4 5 2 7 5 1 44% .238
Marks 8 0 3 1 0 2 0 50% .375
Duplain 3 0 1 1 1 1 0 50% .333
Swenson 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 100% 1.000
Miller 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 0% .000
Stanke 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 n.a. n.a.
Franks 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 n.a. na
Nadzam 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 n.a. n.a

B.J. Budd
By: Don Engelhardt
Date: 05/25/2000
B.J. Budd will lead the Massillon Tigers into the regional tournament with a win-loss record of 9-0 and an ERA of just 0.80. Against this backdrop and with a supporting cast of heavy hitters Massillon will strive to return to the state finals and finish the business started in 1994.

Starting with a 1-0 win over 1999 Division 2 state champion Walsh Jesuit and continuing on throughout the tournament, Budd has been simply outstanding. Mixing a devasting fast ball with a "drop-off-the-table" slider, he has been extremely effective in keeping the hitters off balance. He has fanned 29% of the opposing batters and walked only 8%. As much as the pressure seems to be on this junior, he appears to take it all in stride; just another day at work.
Budd will receive exceptional backup in junior pitchers Jason Savage and Jason Abbott. Savage has an ERA of 3.37 with most of the runs given up coming early in the season. Like Budd, he has a smoking fast ball and good curve. But beyond that, Jason brings a high level of intensity to the game whether it be pitching or field grounders from his shortstop position.
Abbott sports a 4-0 record and is the pitcher of the future for the Tigers. Used sparingly early in the season, he has shown tremendous poise for a junior. His ERA is just 0.90 and he has struck out a team-high 30% of the batters he has faced.
Other pitchers who could see action include Jim Barkan and Chris Swenson. Both have ERAs below 2.0. Here are the regular season pitching stats with the players shown in the order of innings pitched.
Savage 45.67 45 26 22 43 34 5-3 2 3.37
Budd 40.67 28 12 5 64 18 7-0 2 0.80
Broome 35.33 30 16 10 15 13 1-1 0 1.98
Swenson 25.67 29 19 13 20 14 3-2 3 3.54
Abbott 22.33 15 6 3 27 20 4-0 2 0.90
Barkan 11.33 13 4 4 4 5 1-0 1 2.47
Nadzam 5.67 7 0 0 2 1 0-0 0 1.41
Strubel 5.33 4 4 0 5 5 0-0 0 1.69
Weick 2.33 3 5 0 7 6 0-0 0 3.86
Total 194.3 174 92 57 187 116 21-6 10 2.05

Area players gain baseball All-Ohio status

Four area players gained first-team honors as the Ohio High School BaseballCoaches Association announced its All-Ohio team.

Lake High School senior Matt Lorenzo capped his outstanding season by being named to the Division I first team.

Lorenzo, a left-handed pitcher, was 7-2 with a 0.80 ERA and 75 strikeouts in 57 1/3 innings in leading the Blue Streaks to a 19-8 record and a share of the Federal League title.

In Division II, Dover outfielder Steve Caravati was named Player of the Year while being named to the first team. Caravati led the area with a .671 on base percentage and 16 home runs.

In Division II, third baseman Shawn Wright of Carrollton joined Caravati on the first team. Wright hit .448 with 26 RBIs.

In Division III, Tuslaw’s third baseman Mike Crescenze earned first-team honors.

Garnering second-team honors in Division I are a pair of Massillon players, second baseman Todd Helline and third baseman Chad Marceric. Pitcher John Redmond of Jackson earned honorable-mention honors.

Scott Power of Carrollton was named to the second team in Division II, while Central Catholic’s Brady Steineck earned honorable-mention honors.

COLUMBUS (AP) —Here are the 2000 All-Ohio High School Baseball Teams as voted by the Ohio High School Baseball Coaches Association:


First Team

P—Matt Lorenzo, Lake; Jeff Kennard, Centerville. C—John Johnson, Tol. Woodward. 1B—Tim Stacey, Solon. 2B—Brian Meyer, North Royalton. 3B—Marc Franz, Defiance. SS—Dan Lunsford, Mans. Madison. OF—Phil Bojc, Euclid; Michael Ferris, Cin. Colerain; Brian Hirsch, Solon. DH—Jimmy Williams, Mans. Madison.

Player of the Year: Daniel Lunsford, Mans. Madison.

Coach of the Year: Tim Saunders, Dublin Coffman.

Second Team

P—Greg McKenzie, Madison; Michael Myers, Dublin Scioto. C—Clay Desantis, Westerville North. 1B—Travis Boley, Celina. 2B—Todd Helline, Massillon Washington. 3B—Chad Marceric, Massillon Washington. SS—Christian Snavely, Defiance. OF—Jason DeSatnik, Mayfield Village Mayfield; Eric Heminger, Hilliard Davidson; Brandon O’Brien, Mans. Madison. DH—Dan Donatelli, Mayfield Village Mayfield.

Honorable Mention

Dan Bachman, Cin. Elder; John Redmond, Jackson; Aaron Brown, Cin. Elder; Matt Sammon, Young. Boardman; Josh Baughman, Perrysburg; Matt Echan, Solon; Matt Rositano, Lorain Admiral King; Brian Elkevizth, Lodi Cloverleaf


First Team

P—Todd Brown, Washington CH; Zack McKinney, Lakewood. C—Jon Slaughter, Tipp City Tippecanoe. 1B—David Snapp, Lewistown Indian Lake. 2B—Jason Keeling, Cols. Watterson. 3B—Shawn Wright, Carrollton. SS—Matt Barhurst, Tipp City Tippecanoe. OF—Bryce Bednarcyzk, Lakewood; Steve Caravati, Dover; Brandon Cornell, Cols. Watterson. DH—Steve Snyder, Avon Lake.

Player of the Year: Steve Caravati, Dover.

Coach of the Year: Don Thorpe Lakewood.

Second Team

P—Matt Vein, Stuebenville; Luke Howard, Springboro. C—Dan Ruth, Galion. 1B—Josh Betts, Vandalia-Butler. 2B—Nick Ferralli, Vandalia-Butler. 3B—Brian Dill, Lexington. SS—Keith Widing, Chesterland W. Geauga. OF— Rick Hurst, Tallamadge; Scott Power, Carrollton; Ken Williams, St. Marys Memorial. DH—Ben Fulton, Bellfontaine. Honorable Mention

Rodney Brewer, Bryan; Tony Ebersole, Bryan; Brett Myers, Ottawa-Glandorf; John Ross, Avon Lake; Dan Zahler, Chesterland W. Geauga; Adam Cox, Vandalia-Butler; Zac Janicek, Avon Lake; Ryan Lucas, Tipp City Tippecanoe; Brady Steineck, Canton Central Catholic.


First Team

P—Josh Newman, Wheelersburg; Aaron Walker, East Palenstine. C—Luke Speck, Pemberville Eastwood. 1B—Paul Wesrling, Coldwater. 2B—Justin Hill, Granville. 3B—Mike Crescenze, Tuslaw. SS—Josh Pyles , Plain City Jonathan Alder. OF—Matt Foster, Granville; Josh Stephen, Gnad. Indian Valley; Troy Temple, Rockford Parkway. DH—Kyle Blachuta, Bloomdale Elmwood.

Player of the Year: Mike Breyman, Attica Seneca E.

Coach of the Year: Gary Nissen, Genoa Area.

Second Team

P—Kyle Blachuta, Bloomdale Elmwood; Brent Ewing, Wellston. C—Derek Stanfield, Columbiana. 1B—Mike Breyman, Attica Seneca E. 2B—Jeff Lowe, Bellefontaine Benjamin Logan. 3B—John Franks, Burton Berkshire. SS—Ryan Rummell, Coldwater. OF—Dustin Adkins, Lucasville Valley; Adam Brokaw, Bellville Clear Fork; Bill Thomas, New London. DH—Mike Breyman, Attica Seneca E.

Honorable Mention

Derek Adkins, Lucasville Valley; Ben Tuttle, Minford; Bill Mulla, Columbiana; Adam Smith, Columbus Grove; Jason Green, Minford.


First Team

P—Chad Petty, Southington Chalker; Neil Schmitz, St. Henry. C—Adam Morgan, Southington Chalker. 1B—Brad Pettigrew, Newark Cath. 2B—Phil Faires, Glouster Trimble. 3B—Bob Heitkamp, Ft. Recovery. SS—Ryan Barnett, Mowrystown Whiteoak. OF—Justin Bennington, Fairfield; Chad Reineke, Def. Ayersville; Kendall Schlabach, Berlin Hiland. DH—Brent Bohman, St. Henry.

Player of the Year: Chad Petty, Southington Chalker.

Coach of the Year: Todd Karako, Fairport Harding.

Second Team

P—Mitch LeMasters, Toronto; David German, Tipp City Bethel. C—Anthony Owens, Willow Wood Symmes Valley. 1B—Neil Schmitz, St. Henry. 2B—Brent Koesters, St. Henry. 3B—Dan Cannon, Fairfield. SS—Mat Plunkett, Bethel. OF— Mike Rupinsky, Warren Kennedy; Ryan Stevenson, Sidney Fairlawn; John Zinnicker, Fairport Harbor Harding. DH—Dave Jamieson, Ottawa Hills.

Honorable Mention

Ben Dennison, N. Lewisburg Triad; Brad Lemon, S. Charleston Southeastern; Tom Pickering, Newark Cath.; Mike Ward, Fairport Harbor Harding; John Hatfield, Crestline.

Stark County H.S. players to meet in Hank Miller contests

CANTON — The annual Hank Miller All-Star Baseball Games, featuring seniors from Stark County’s larger high schools, will be played tonight at GlenOak’s baseball stadium.

The first game begins at 5:30.

The North, featuring seniors from Jackson, Louisville, North Canton, McKinley, Lake and Canton South, will play the South, featuring players from GlenOak, Alliance, Massillon, Timken and Marlington. Two seven-inning games will be contested.

Rocky Bourquin of Canton South, Tom Yingling of Jackson and Mark Kremer of Lake will coach the North, while Massillon’s Tim Ridgely, GlenOak’s Joe Gilhousen and Alliance’s Shawn Alazaus will coach the South.

The Jack Garber Award will be presented to the Most Valuable Player of the South team, while the Robert Fife Award goes to the MVP of the North. The Hank Miller Award will go to the series MVP.

McKinley head baseball coach Bob Neff is the tournament director.

The team members are:


North Canton: Doug Yoder, 1B; Judd Allen, P; Mike Grady, P; Sam Simmerman, C; Brian Kehner, 3B. McKinley: Matt Byrd, 3B; John Umberger, C; Steve Larson, P. Lake: Matt Lorenzo, P/3B; Kris Koran, SS; Dustin Shrock, OF. Louisville: Jason Archer, P/SS; Sean Zustin, 2B; John Herbert, OF; Nathan DeGasperis, 1B. Jackson: Bret Blackstock, SS; Eric Scott, 1B; John Redmon, P/OF; Nick Evans, P/OF. Canton South: Bill Hanson, P/OF; Andy Hussar, C; Dean Roach, 2B.


Timken: Randall Ramsey, 2B/P; Joe Rue, OF. Massillon: Chad Marceric, 3B; Anthony Battle, 1B; Charles Hendricks, C; Todd Helline, 2B. Alliance: Tony DeGirolamo, SS; Josh Meiring, P/OF; Dustin Johnson, 3B. GlenOak: Matt McFarland, 2B; Nate Knobel, P; K.C. Sanders, C; Mike Beard, P/3B. Marlington: Doug Haidet, 2B; Larry Scarbrough, OF; Justin McCarty, OF. Perry: Moe Elum, P/INF; Josh Mayle, P/OF; Glen Schering, P/1B; Brandon Villilo, P/3B.

                                                                             AP State Poll

COLUMBUS, Ohio- How a state panel of coaches rates Ohio high school boys baseball teams in the first regular season poll for The Associated Press (by OHSAA divisions, with first place votes in parenthesis):

                              Division I     

1. Mansfield Madison(5)           7-0           153
2.Grove City(3)                          8-1            115
3.Solon(2)                                  4-1              72
4.Toledo Start(2)                       4-0             66
5.Cincinnati Elder(2)                8-0              66
6.Hamilton(1)                            7-1             50
7.Cincinnati Moeller(1)            6-0             50
8.Massillon Jackson(1)        7-0             46
9.Defiance(1)                           6-1              41
10.Dublin Coffman                   4-3             33

Second Ten: 11.Lakewood(31),12.Centerville(30), 13.North Canton Hoover(30), 14.Fairfield(29), 15.Toldeo St. Francis(27), 16.Pickerington(24), 17.Uniontown Lake(19), 18.Euclid(18), 19.Canton GlenOak(17), 20. Massillon Washington(13).

                                Division II

1.Vandalia Butler(8)                            7-0             135
2.Steubenville(1)                                 5-1             129
3.Bryan                                                 4-0             128
4.Perry                                                  4-0             118
5.Mentor Lake Catholic(1)                 4-0               87
6.Tipp City Tippecanoe(5)                 9-0               87
7.Hebron Lakewood(5)                      9-0               86
8.Carrolton(3)                                      9-1               82
9.Cuyahoga Falls Wash Jesuit(2)3-1              82
10.Portsmouth                                     4-1              40

Second Ten: 11.Columbus St. Charles(38), 12.Tallmadge(37), 13.Sandusky Perkins(1)(37), 14. Columbus DeSales(31), 15.Alliance(28), 16.Columbus Watterson(26), 17.Parma Heights Holy Name(20), 18.Milan Edison(20), 19.Norwood(19), 20.Hamilton Badin (18).

                            Division III

1.Wheelersburg(8)                     7-0            217
2.Plain City Jonathon Alder(3)  8-0            214
3.Genoa(2)                                 6-0            151
4.Coldwater(6)                           8-0            140
5.Cleveland VASJ                     4-0            134
6.Attica Seneca East(2)           1-0            101
7.Bloomdale Elmwood              3-1             72
8.Ashland Crestwood                4-2             55
9.Columbiana                             5-2             44
10.Cincinnati Madiera(1)          4-0             30

Second Ten: 11.Campbell Memorial(27), 12.Batavia(17), 13.Wellston(17), 14.Johnstown Monroe (11), 15.Cincinnati St.Bernard Elmwood Place(11), 16.Columbiana Crestwood(10), 17.Germantown Valley View(10), 18.Berlin Center Western Reserve(10), 19.Bellefountaine Benjamin Logan(8), 20.Oak Hill(7).

                             Division IV

1.St.Henry(15)                               3-1             245
2.Toronto(2)                                   6-2             233
3.Cridersville Perry                       5-0            182
4.Crestline(2)                                 4-0             157
5.Fairport Harbor Harding            7-0            133
6.West Unity Hilltop                       5-1              99
7.New Reigel                                 7-0              92
8.Delphos St. John(1)                  8-0              80
9.Ottoville                                       5-1              75
10.Willow Wood Symmes Valley 4-0             38

Second Ten: 11.Bellaire St. John(35), 12.Leeburg Fairfield(1)(27), 13. Cincinnati Country Day(27), 14.Steubenville Catholic Central(22), 15.Ashland Crestview(21), 16.Southington Chalker(20), 17.Morral Ridgedale(17), 18.Mineral Ridge(16), 19. Ft. Recovery(13), 20. Acadia(12).

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- How a state panel of coaches rates Ohio high school boys baseball teams in the
third regular-season poll for The Associated Press (by Ohio High School Athletic Association divisions, with first-place votes in parentheses):
1, Mansfield Madison (9) 13-1 184
2, Toledo Start (4) 10-0 104
3, Defiance (1) 13-1 102
4, Cin. Moeller (1) 12-1  101
5, Cin. Elder (4) 15-4  86
6, Toledo Waite 12-0  85
7, Grove City 13-6  77
8, Hamilton 15-4  53
9, Lakewood 13-1  44
10, Brunswick 12-1  33
Second 10: 11, Logan 31. 12, Mayfield Village Mayfield (1) 29. 13, Fairfield 24. 14, Canton GlenOak 21. 15, Dublin Coffman 20. 16, Uniontown Lake 19. 17, N. Canton Hoover 18. 18, Solon 15. 19, Mass. Washington 13. 20, Westerville North 12.
1, Hebron Lakewood (13) 18-0  227
2, Vandalia Butler (12) 13-0  201
3, Steubenville (2) 18-1  169
4, Carrollton (1) 14-7  143
5, Tipp City Tippecanoe 15-2  109
6, Bryan 11-1  97
7, Springfield Shawnee 14-3  81
8, Dresden Tri-Valley 11-1  62
9, Portsmouth 11-2  53
10, St. Marys Memorial 13-4  46
Second 10: 11, Cuya. Falls Walsh Jesuit 43. 12, Galion 39. 13, Parma Hts. Holy Name 38. 14, Mentor Lake Cath. 36. 15, Ham. Badin (1) 31. 16 (tie), Bellefontaine, Alliance 28. 18, Wooster Triway 23. 19, Tallmadge (1) 19. 20, Trenton Edgewood 17.
1, Wheelersburg (12) 15-0  229
2, Coldwater (9) 14-0  175
3, Cleve. VASJ 9-1  128
4, Bloomdale Elmwood 14-2  114
5, Genoa 14-2  106
6, Bell. Benjamin Logan 14-3  105
7, Plain City Jon. Alder 13-5  100
8, Attica Seneca E. (2) 10-0  58
9, Gnad. Indian Valley 11-6  45
10, Cin. Oak Hill 8-2  35
Second 10: 11, Campbell Memorial 32. 12, Johnstown Northridge 27. 13 (tie), Cin. Madeira (1), Ash. Crestview 21. 15 (tie), Mass. Tuslaw, Batavia 20. 17 (tie), W. Lafayette Ridgewood, Minford 13. 19, Columbiana 10. 20 (tie), Lynchburg-Clay, Granville 9.
1, Toronto (14) 21-2  227
2, Lima Perry (4) 11-0  203
3, Fairport Harbor Harding (3) 15-1  183
4, New Reigel (1) 14-2  139
5, Fort Recovery 10-4  77
6, Fairfield 12-2  76
7, W. Unity Hilltop 8-2  70
8, Fayetteville-Perry 11-0  67
9, St Henry (2) 9-5  66
10, Willow Wood Symmes Valley (1) 10-2  56
Second 10: 11, Ottoville 42. 12, Southington Chalker 41. 13, Delphos St. John's 26. 14, Crestline 24. 15, Cin. Landmark Christian 13. 16, Young. Stritch 8. 17 (tie), Cin. Country Day, Bellaire St. John, Middletown Fenwick 7. 20, Mineral Ridge 6.
AP-CS-05-01-00 0819EDT

Baseball -High School Poll
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- How a state panel of coaches rates Ohio high school boys baseball teams in the fourth and penultimate regular-season poll for The Associated Press (by Ohio High School Athletic Association divisions, with first-place votes in parentheses):
1, Toledo Start (11) 12-0  288
2, Mansfield Madison (5) 15-3  167
3, Defiance (3) 15-2  163
4, Cin. Moeller 14-1  112
5, Cin. Elder (4) 19-4  82
6, Toledo Waite 14-2  58
7, Logan 16-3  56
8, Hamilton 18-5  53
9, Wadsworth (1) 12-2  52
10, Grove City 15-8  48
Second 10: 11, Lakewood (1) 46. 12, Brunswick 45. 13, Mayfield Village Mayfield (1) 42. 14, Solon 33. 15, Mass. Washington 27. 16, Westerville North 16. 17, Uniontown Lake 16. 18, Canton GlenOak 15. 19, Huber Hts. Wayne 13. 20, Piqua 12.
1, Hebron Lakewood (16) 23-0  227
2, Steubenville (5) 20-1  214
3, Vandalia Butler (6) 18-2  210
4, Carrollton (1) 17-2  126
5, Tipp City Tippecanoe 18-3  125
6, Washington CH 16-1  80
7, Bryan 15-3  74
8, Lewistown Indian Lake 17-2  71
9, Spring. Shawnee 16-5  55
10, Olmsted Falls 13-2  45
Second 10: 11, Cols. Watterson 34. 12, Portsmouth 32. 13, Parma Hts. Holy Name 30. 14 (tie), Cuya. Falls Walsh Jesuit, Dresden Tri-Valley 24. 16, St. Marys Memorial 23. 17, Tallmadge 19. 18, Mentor Lake Cath. 18. 19, Ham. Badin 16. 20, Bellefontaine 11.
1, Wheelersburg (7) 18-3  210
2, Coldwater (12) 17-0  189
3, Attica Seneca E. (3) 14-0  120
4, Minford 20-3  104
5, Ger. Valley View 19-3  103
Cleve. VA-St. Joesph 11-2  103
7, Bell. Benjamin Logan 17-3  100
8, Genoa (1) 14-2  91
9, Bloomdale Elmwood (1) 15-2  87
10, Gnad. Indian Valley 16-7  49
Second 10: 11, Plain City Jon. Alder 47. 12, Cin. Madeira (1) 42. 13, Granville 32. 14, Batavia (1) 25. 15, Lynchburg-Clay 22. 16, New London 19. 17 (tie), W. Lafayette Ridgewood, Campbell Memorial 17. 19, St. Bernard-Elmwood Place 15. 20, Mass. Tuslaw 13.
1, Toronto (26) 21-2  269
2, Lima Perry 15-2  200
3, Fairport Harbor Harding (1) 19-2  203
4, New Reigel 15-2  129
5, Fayetteville-Perry 11-3  96
6, Bellaire St. John n/a  87
7, Southington Chalker 13-4  85
8, Fairfield 13-6  52
Willow Wood Symmes Valley 13-2  52
10, Tipp City Bethel 16-5  51
Second 10: 11, Crestline 49. 12, Ottoville 35. 13, Young. Stritch 23. 14 (tie), Delphos St. John's, Ft. Recovery 20. 16, W. Unity Hilltop 18. 17, Lanc. Fisher Cath. 14. 18, Mowrystown Whiteoak 12. 19, Cin. Landmark Christian 8. 20, Ft. Loramie 7.
AP-CS-05-08-00 0814EDT

High School Baseball Poll
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- How a state panel of coaches rates Ohio high school boys baseball teams in the fifth and final regular-season poll for The Associated Press (by Ohio High School Athletic Association divisions, with first-place votes in parentheses):
1, Toledo Start (11) 17-0  213
2, Mansfield Madison (2) 19-4  162
3, Defiance (4) 20-2  159
4, Cin. Moeller (1) 22-4  102
5, Cin. Elder (4) 21-4  92
6, Mayfield Village Mayfield (5) 21-2  84
Logan 18-4  84
Piqua 18-3  84
9, Wadsworth 15-4  58
10, Solon (1) 21-5  51
Second 10: 11, Lakewood 48. 12, Brunswick 31. 13, Centerville 29. 14, Mass. Washington 28. 15, Grove City 27. 16 (tie), Tol. Waite, Hamilton 23. 18, Euclid 20. 19, Uniontown Lake 19. 20, Miamisburg 16.
1, Hebron Lakewood (23) 26-0  281
2, Steubenville (3) 23-1  245
3, Vandalia Butler (1) 22-2  214
4, Carrollton (1) 19-3  123
5, Tipp City Tippecanoe 21-5  103
6, Lewistown Indian Lake 20-2  98
7, Olmsted Falls 15-3  62
8, Bryan 16-4  59
9, Spring. Shawnee 19-5  41
Athens 17-4  41
Second 10: 11, Parma Hts. Holy Name 39. 12, Washington CH 31. 13, St. Marys Memorial 29. 14, Tallmadge 28. 15, Bellefontaine 21. 16, Ham. Badin 17. 17, Desden Tri-Valley 16. 18, Cols. Watterson 15. 19, Cuya. Falls Walsh Jesuit. 14. 20., Cols. St. Charles 13.
1, Coldwater (17) 22-1  253
2, Wheelersburg (1) 22-3  162
3, Attica Seneca E. (3) 17-0  119
4, Minford (1) 22-3  107
5, Bell. Benjamin Logan 19-3  97
6, Genoa 18-3  90
7, Bloomdale Elmwood 16-2  70
8, Cleve. VA-St. Joesph 16-3  65
9, Granville 20-7  54
10, Wellston 21-6  45
Second 10: 11, Plain City Jon. Alder 37. 12, Cin. Madeira (1) 33. 13, Ger. Valley View 28. 14, Batavia (2) 27. 15, Gnad. Indian Valley 23. 16, New London 20. 17, Cin. N. College Hill 17. 18 (tie), Cin. Tuslaw, Day. Oakwood 12. 20, Lynchburg-Clay 11.
1, Toronto (26) 24-2  269
2, Fairport Harbor Harding (1) 21-2  219
3, Lima Perry 17-2  202
4, New Reigel 16-3  112
5, St. Henry 17-7  110
6, Mowrystown Whiteoak 19-7  92
7, Southington Chalker 16-4  90
8, Ft. Recovery 16-7  80
9, Crestline 15-8  53
10, Willow Wood Symmes Valley 13-2  48
Second 10: 11, Ottoville 46. 12, W. Unity Hilltop 40. 13, Leesburg Fairfield 22. 14, Fayetteville-Perry 16. 15 (tie), Crestview, Tipp City Bethel 11. 17 (tie), Delphos St. John's, Young. Stritch 8. 19 (tie), W. Liberty Salem, Cin. Landmark Christian 7.
AP-CS-05-16-00 0802EDT

Baseball America's
High School Top 25
Baseball America's High School Poll is chosen by Baseball America in conjunction with the National High School Baseball Coaches Association. Records indicated are final 1999 records.
Records through April 29. The next poll will be released May 8.
Bellaire (Texas) HS
Wellington (Fla.) Community HS
Bishop Kenny HS, Jacksonville
Gloucester Catholic HS, Gloucester City, N.J.
Providence Catholic HS, New Lenox, Ill.
Moody HS, Corpus Christi, Texas
West Torrance HS, Torrance, Calif.
Lowndes County HS, Valdosta, Ga.
Zephyrhills (Fla.) HS
Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego
Gulliver Prep, Miami
Westlake HS, Westlake Village, Calif.
Oakland HS, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
Temecula Valley HS, Temecula, Calif.
Barbe HS, Lake Charles, La.
Basic HS, Henderson, Nev.
Canyon del Oro HS, Tucson, Ariz.
Villa Park (Calif.) HS
Owasso (Okla.) HS
Riverdale Baptist HS, Upper Marlboro, Md.
T.C. Roberson HS, Asheville, N.C.
Duncanville (Texas) HS
Pleasure Ridge Park HS, Louisville
Xaverian HS, Brooklyn
Cretin-Derham Hall HS, St. Paul, Minn.

DROPPED OUT: No. 9 Kamiakin HS, Kennewick, Wash. (12-2); No. 12 Tupelo, Miss., HS (29-4); No. 15 Green Valley HS, Henderson, Nev. (20-4); No. 16 Fountain Valley, Calif., HS (17-6); No. 17 Jenks, Okla., HS (33-5); No. 18 Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., HS (27-3); No. 19 Clovis, Calif., HS (20-4); No. 20 Tate HS, Gonzalez, Fla. (24-6); No. 21 Hoggard HS, Wilmington, N.C. (20-2); No. 22 Germantown, Tenn., HS (26-3); No. 23 Blue Springs, Mo., HS; No. 25 Key West, Fla., HS (23-7).

Baseball America's
High School Top 25
Baseball America's High School Poll is chosen by Baseball America in conjunction with the National High School Baseball Coaches Association. Records indicated are final 1999 records.
Records through May 6. The next poll will be released May 22.
Bellaire (Texas) HS
Bishop Kenny HS, Jacksonville
Wellington (Fla.) Community HS
Gloucester Catholic HS, Gloucester City, N.J.
Providence Catholic HS, New Lenox, Ill.
Moody HS, Corpus Christi, Texas
Lowndes County HS, Valdosta, Ga.
Zephyrhills (Fla.) HS
Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego
Gulliver Prep, Miami
West Torrance HS, Torrance, Calif.
Westlake HS, Westlake Village, Calif.
Barbe HS, Lake Charles, La.
Temecula Valley HS, Temecula, Calif.
Basic HS, Henderson, Nev.
Oakland HS, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
Canyon del Oro HS, Tucson, Ariz.
Riverdale Baptist HS, Upper Marlboro, Md.
Villa Park (Calif.) HS
Owasso (Okla.) HS
T.C. Roberson HS, Asheville, N.C.
South Kitsap HS, Port Orchard, Wash.
Chatsworth (Calif.) HS
Cretin-Derham Hall HS, St. Paul, Minn.
Xaverian HS, Brooklyn
DROPPED OUT: No. 22 Duncanville, Texas, HS (25-3); No. 23 Pleasure Ridge Park HS, Louisville (18-2).

Copyright 1998-2000 Baseball America. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Baseball America's
Preseason High School Top 50
Selected by Baseball America and the National High School Baseball Coaches Association (1999 records in parentheses)
The first in-season poll will be released on March 13.
1. Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego (24-6)
Broncos have talent up and down lineup, from potential first-rounders Scott Heard and Matt Wheatland to freshman sensation John Peabody.
2. Wellington, Fla., Community HS (33-4)
Defending 6-A state champs return LHP Sean Burnett (12-1, 1.30), C Rob Orton (.422-4-33) and 3B Brian Snyder (.396-4-35).
3. Westminster Academy, Fort Lauderdale (33-2)
LHP Dane Artman (8-0, 0.15 at Key West High) and Florida-bound C Mike Murray and RHP Scot Drucker are among 11 transfers.
4. Bellaire, Texas, HS (38-2)
Reigning 5-A champions favored to repeat with return of six regulars, including SS Enrique Cruz (.512-10-53) and RHP Adam Laird (9-0, 0.85).
5. Temecula Valley HS, Temecula, Calif. (21-6)
Golden Bears feature four Cal State Fullerton signees, led by 3B Kyle Boyer (.565-7-33) and SS David Garcia (.436-8-40).
6. Gulliver Prep, Miami (24-7)
Raiders feature four Division I recruits, led by SS/RHP David Espinosa (.430-8-36, 35 SB; 5-1, 1.20) and LHP Travis Nesmith (5-0, 1.30).
7. Providence Catholic HS, New Lenox, Ill. (30-3)
Celtics have solid pitching tandem in senior LHP Carmen Pignatiello (11-1, 1.28) and junior Kris Honel (7-1, 0.73).
8. Gloucester Catholic HS, Gloucester, N.J. (27-4)
Rams, led by RHP Greg Burke (10-2, 1.93), haven’t had a losing season in 25 years, and this may be their best team ever.
9. Sarasota, Fla., HS (25-7)
Sailors look to return to national prominence with a lineup that returns every regular position player and ace LHP Jason Miller (9-1, 1.29).
10. Moody HS, Corpus Christi, Texas (30-3)
Trojans lose little from 1999; among returnees are C David Castillo (.527-0-42) and RHP/SS Gene Flores (9-1, 2.19; .360-0-15).
11. Kamiakin HS, Kennewick, Wash. (21-4)
RHP-3B Jason Smith (6-3, 4.16; .376-2-29) is one of seven starters from team that finished second at ‘99 American Legion World Series.
12. Fountain Valley, Calif., HS (19-10)
Coach Ron LaRuffa returns after one-year absence and welcomes back 3B Casey Janssen (.348-3-24) and SS John Clark, a key transfer.
13. Seminole, Fla., HS (24-5)
Warhawks’ seven best players are juniors, including 1B Casey Kotchman (.400-4-26) and RHP Ryan Dixon (5-3, 5.37).
14. Silverado HS, Las Vegas (18-7)
Skyhawks boast six Division I signees, including 1B Jeremy West (.576-6-30) and C Thomas Rojas (.425-3-36).
15. Bellarmine Prep, San Jose (29-7)
1B-LHP James Holder (.395-7-33; 0-1, 2.92) heads up Bells’ best team since Pat Burrell-led squad was contender in 1994.
16. Oakland HS, Murfreesboro, Tenn. (37-2)
3-A champs return RHP/1B Jason Sharber (6-1, 2.48; .347-8-27), SS Chuck Akers (.410-5-33) and junior OF Jeremy Slayden (.448-13-52).
17. Barbe HS, Lake Charles, La. (36-3)
Bucs made a run at a national title a year ago and return junior 3B Austin Nagle (.520-17-58) and 1B Eric Bruchhaus (.393-6-41).
18. Lowndes HS, Valdosta, Ga. (26-5)
OF Javon Moran (.414-11-26) is Vikings’ best player, but keep an eye on junior SS Stephen Drew (.559-6-23), J.D.’s brother.
19. Brito Private HS, Miami (30-7)
Even with a school enrollment of 100, Panthers feature a deep pitching staff led by senior LHP Denny Hernandez (9-4, 0.98).
20. Notre Dame HS, Sherman Oaks, Calif. (23-5)
Lineup features C Matt Cunningham (.510-2-29) and SS Jonathan Brewster (.438-5-22), but Knights need reliable arms.
21. Riverdale Baptist HS, Upper Marlboro, Md. (35-4)
RHP/3B Kenny Nelson (9-2, 1.79; .389-14-45) and LHP-OF Joe Kemp (5-0, 2.17; .417-8-22) are two-way players for Crusaders.
22. Canyon del Oro HS, Tucson (25-7)
Dorados have one of nation’s best two-way talents in Arizona State-bound RHP/C Ryan Schroyer (7-2, 2.30, .400-6-29).
23. Duncanville, Texas, HS (28-9)
With LHP Justin Simmons (14-2, 1.51) and RHP Michael Garza (10-4, 3.25) back, Panthers could push Bellaire to the wire again.
24. Apex, N.C., HS (20-5)
RHP Tom Graham (12-2, 1.81) and OF Wes Moyer (.514-8-26) return, and Cougars get standout junior C Landon Powell, who missed ’99 with injury.
25. Prattville, Ala., HS (42-8)
With LHP/OFs Brandon Mims (12-1, 1.71; .432-13-47) and Chad White (10-2, 1.22; .361-6-24), Lions hope to upstage Vestavia Hills.
26. Westlake HS, Westlake Village, Calif. (19-6)
Warriors had a record six players participate in Area Code Games, including junior RHP/1B Tyler Adamczyk (3-0, 4.32; .450-7-23).
27. Lassiter HS, Marietta, Ga. (35-2)
Trojans lose a ton of talent from ’99 national champions, but C Rusty Krueger (.303-4-21) and 1B Kevin Gergel (.420-8-46) are three-year regulars.
28. Green Valley HS, Henderson, Nev. (19-8)
Seniors Dave Krynzel (.400-4-27) and Ben Schiess (.416-7-29), and junior Garrett Guzman (.514) form nation’s best outfield.
29. Round Rock, Texas, HS (26-7)
Dragons return 22 lettermen, including seven starters and top pitchers Bobby Sawicki (11-1, 2.29) and Joey Guarjardo (9-2, 1.74).
30. Mauldin, S.C., HS (30-5)
Mavericks just missed a state title last year and return two top pitchers, LHP David Marchbanks (7-2, 3.43) and RHP Chris Carter (11-1, 3.26).
31. Owasso, Okla., HS (39-5)
Two-time Oklahoma 6-A champion Rams return RHP Mark Roberts (14-1, 2.05) and 3B Scott Campbell (.402-8-36), and added three transfers.
32. Mater Dei HS, Santa Ana, Calif. (21-7)
Monarchs return C Josh Hansen (.438-12-40) and welcome transfer SS Sergio Santos (12 HRs, 43 RBIs as a freshman).
33. Bishop Kenny HS, Jacksonville (28-4)
Crusaders are led by star C Tony Richie (.580-9-56) and Rumble twins, Pat (.451-4-13; 4-2, 2.05) and Matt (.374-4-17).
34. Lewisburg Area, Pa., HS (21-4)
C Ryder Mathias (.451-7-21) and 3B/RHP Scott Schade (.434-8-28) give Green Dragons two frontline players.
35. Start HS, Toledo (23-3)
Perennial Ohio power lost in district play a year ago, but returns solid nucleus led by three Division I signees and junior C Matt Birr (.408).
36. Hoggard HS, Wilmington, N.C. (20-4)
Vikings pin hopes on LHP/OF Scott Senatore (9-2, 1.73; .390-2-20) and RHP/SS Tommy Bowker (8-0, 2.75; .267-0-14).
37. Woodland, Calif., HS (29-7)
Wolves return nucleus from sectional runners-up, led by junior SS Dustin Pedroia (.448-2-29) and RHP Paul Pinegar (9-1, 1.29).
38. Hart HS, Newhall, Calif. (27-4)
California sectional champions in ‘99, Indians return RHP-1B Jamie Shields (11-0, 2.35; .478-11-45), one of nation’s top pitchers.
39. Florida Air Academy, Melbourne, Fla. (30-8)
Senior OF Jose Cruz (.363, 8 SB) provides speed; sophomore 1B Prince Fielder (.385-6-33), Cecil’s son, provides power.
40. Klein Oak HS, Spring, Texas (24-9)
Panthers return strong nucleus, including 1B Jonathan Hamilton (.437-10-53) and SS Eric Schindewolf (.461-2-31).
41. Jenks, Okla., HS (23-16)
Trojans will be a force with four Division I prospects, including LHP/OF Buddy Blair (5-4, 2.60; .358-4-26) and OF Tyler Johnson (.443-10-41).
42. Dunedin, Fla., HS (28-3)
Led by senior C Cory Agar (.439-5-40), Falcons return nucleus of team that was ranked No. 1 in Florida 5-A classification most of ’99.
43. Clovis, Calif., HS (21-10)
SS Chris Patrick (.369-1-12), son of the Cougars’ coach, played on teams that finished in top three in ’97-98, and now is team’s best player.
44. DeSmet Jesuit HS, St. Louis (19-13)
Division I-bound pitchers Bob Keppel (5-0, 1.13), Don Rogers (3-3, 4.86) and Bob Zimmerman (2-4, 3.56) give Spartans an edge.
45. Tupelo, Miss., HS (30-6)
Golden Wave has an experienced hitting team, led by two Mississippi State recruits: OF Jonathan Bell (.394-8-38) and C Reed Hawkins (.402-4-34).
46. North Rockland HS, Thiells, N.Y. (20-5)
Red Raiders, winners of three New York large-school titles in ’90s, return seven key regulars, including LHP Justin Ottman (7-1).
47. The Woodlands, Texas, HS (21-7)
Highlanders will pin their state-title hopes squarely on one player, Texas-bound OF-LHP Vince Sinisi (.544-9-42; 11-1, 2.08).
48. Elizabethtown, Ky., HS (33-4)
RHP/OF Mark Galvin (14-1, 1.42; .377-7-34) and RHP/SS David Hughes (7-2, 1.45; .509-6-32) are solid two-way players for Panthers.
49. Chaparral HS, Scottsdale, Ariz. (32-2)
Defending 4-A champs return three-year starters: RHP/1B Sean Rierson (11-1, 1.53, .474-0-25) and C Jeff Lundgren (.384-1-25).
50. Key West, Fla., HS (26-9)
Conchs lost star LHP Dane Artman to a rival, but OF Ben Harrison (.407-5-26) and RHP Daniel Hersey (10-1, 1.57) lead a veteran team.

Copyright 1998-1999 Baseball America. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Super 25 baseball rankings

   Regional rankings
   Have an opinion? Talk baseball
Preseason rankings
1. Rancho Bernardo, San Diego (24-6)

Outlook: Six starters and Nos. 2-3 pitchers return from school's first San Diego Section Division I champion. Five seniors, including four possible pro draftees, and five underclassmen have Division I potential. The nation's premier catcher, Scott Heard, will be able to hit this year.

2. Wellington, West Palm Beach, Fla. (33-4)

Outlook: Defending Class 6A champion hopes to repeat with strong veteran nucleus, bolstered by two talented transfers. LHP Sean Burnett was 12-1 with three saves and a 1.30 ERA, striking out 135 and walking 18 in 86 1/3 innings. Catcher Robbie Orton batted .422 with 33 RBI.

3. Westminster Academy, Fort Lauderdale (33-2)

Outlook: Class 2A champion has 15-game winning streak and 11 transfers representing 10 schools. Dane Artman (6-3, 205) was 8-0 with a 0.15 ERA as junior at Key West.

4. Fountain Valley, Calif. (16-10)

Outlook: Six returning starters and top five pitchers will be joined by all-CIF shortstop John Clark from Ocean View (Huntington Beach). RHP-3B Casey Janssen (6-3, 190) batted .348 with 24 RBI and was 1-1 with four saves as junior.

5. Bellaire, Houston (38-2)

Outlook: USA TODAY's defending national champion again will be in the title chase, returning six starters plus No. 2 pitcher Adam Laird, who was 8-0 as sophomore with 0.85 ERA. SS Enrique Cruz batted .512 as junior with 18 doubles, 55 runs and 53 RBI.

6. Round Rock, Texas (26-4)

Outlook: Strong contender for Class 5A title with seven starters and three of top four pitchers returning. RHP-SS Joey Guajardo was 9-2 with 1.74 ERA and batted .327 with 24 RBI as sophomore. RHP-SS Bobby Sawicki was 11-1 with 2.29 ERA and batted .324 with 22 runs and 25 RBI as junior.

7. Providence Catholic, New Lenox, Ill. (30-3)

Outlook: Four pitchers and five starters return. Strength was apparent when team won summer state title. LHP Carmen Pignatiello was 11-1 last year, striking out 115 in 76 innings. RF Pat Flynn batted .485 with 15 doubles and 51 RBI.

8. Steinert, Hamilton Township, N.J. (29-3)

Outlook: Two-time defending Group IV champion has five returning starters and top four pitchers. RHP Michael Rogers was 11-2 with 1.21 ERA. LF Scott Rich batted .382 with school-record 42 RBI as junior. Senior SS Joe Hernandez batted .506.

9. Gloucester Catholic, Gloucester City, N.J. (27-4)

Outlook: Defending Parochial A champion welcomes back nine starters and top three pitchers. RHP Greg Burke (6-4, 190) was 10-2 with 1.93 ERA as junior. Another senior right-hander, Chris Della Rocco, was 7-1 with 1.96 ERA.

10. Prattville, Ala. (42-8)

Outlook: Hopes to replace Vestavia Hills (Birmingham) as No. 1 state power with six returning starters and top four pitchers. LHP Brandon Mims (6-2, 190) was 12-1 with 1.71 ERA, striking out 150 in 94 1/3 innings. He also batted .432. LHP Chad White was 10-2 with 1.22 ERA and batted .361.

11. Broughton, Raleigh, N.C. (13-10)

Outlook: Three North Carolina State signees return from a team that belted school-record 45 home runs. LHP-1B David Hicks (6-4, 220) had 12 HRs and 36 RBI. SS Lee Kimball had 11 HRs and 18 RBI.

12. Canyon del Oro, Tucson (25-7)

Outlook: C-RHP Ryan Schroyer heads veteran team that returns top four pitchers. Arizona State signee Schroyer (5-11, 195) batted .400 with 29 RBI and was 7-2 with 2.30 ERA. 2B-SS Ian Kinsler batted .395 with 21 RBI.

13. Oakland, Murfreesboro, Tenn. (37-2)

Outlook: Defending Class 3A champion starts season with 22-game winning streak and good nucleus. Power-hitting RF Jeremy Slayden batted .448 with 13 HRs and tied school record with 52 RBI as sophomore. CF-SS Chuck Akers batted .410 with 33 RBI and school-record 61 runs.

14. Owasso, Okla. (39-5)

Outlook: Defending Class 6A champion bolstered by three transfers. 3B Scott Campbell batted .443 with 47 runs and 36 RBI as junior, and OF Cory Patton batted .402 with 49 RBI. RHP Mark Roberts was 14-1 with 2.05 ERA.

15. Lowndes County, Valdosta, Ga. (26-5)

Outlook: Senior OFs Javon Moran and Zane Green will get welcome support from junior SS Stephen Drew, younger brother of Tim and J.D. Drew. Moran batted .410 as junior; Green batted .414 and had 2.85 ERA. Drew batted .569 with 23 RBI in 16 games.

16. Barbe, Lake Charles, La. (36-3)

Outlook: Outstanding senior class, which includes seven Division I players, should propel Class 5A state runner-up to elusive title. Senior LHP-1B Eric Bruchhaus batted .393 with 41 RBI. Senior 3B Chad Carnahan batted .341 with 29 RBI. Junior CF-3B Austin Nagle batted sizzling .520 with 17 HRs and 58 RBI.

17. Riverdale Baptist, Upper Marlboro, Md. (35-4)

Outlook: Strong veteran nucleus enhanced by two talented transfers. Senior RHP Kenny Nelson was 9-2 with four saves and 1.79 ERA. He also batted .369 with school-record 14 HRs and 45 RBI. Senior LHP-CF Joe Kemp batted .417 with 17 doubles and 25 RBI and was 5-0 with 2.17 ERA.

18. Bellarmine Prep, San Jose, Calif. (29-7)

Outlook: Northern California's No. 1 team will be led by LHP-1B J.D. Cockroft, who was 6-1 with 2.15 ERA as junior. LHP-1B James Holder (6-5, 205) batted .395 with 33 RBI as junior. Senior 2B Kevin Frandsen batted .393 with 16 RBI.

19. Gulliver Prep, Miami (24-8)

Outlook: Every starter and top four pitchers return, paced by SS David Espinosa, who batted .519 with eight HRs, 25 RBI and 35 stolen bases as junior. Senior C Javier Herrera batted .420 with 34 RBI. Senior LHP Travis Nesmith (6-3, 200) was 5-1.

20. Warren Central, Vicksburg, Miss. (30-5)

Outlook: Junior LHP Taylor Tankersley is key returnee, having posted an 11-2 record with 0.62 ERA last year. Sophomore RHP-LF Brian Pettway was 4-0 with 1.43 ERA and batted .457. Senior catcher Craig Newton batted .377 with 37 RBI.

21. Chambersburg, Pa. (27-2)

Outlook: Has a 20-game winning streak and top four pitchers to carry load. Junior RHP Chad Braniff was 7-0 with 1.03 ERA last year for the Class AAA champ. RHP Ben Lefever was 6-1 with 2.84 ERA and batted .333 with five triples. Junior catcher Adam Witter batted .323 with 25 RBI.

22. Lexington, S.C. (32-3)

Outlook: Defending Class 4A champion will count on LF Tony Hanks, who batted .420 with 27 RBI last year, and SS Britt Bearden, (.407 with nine HRs and 42 RBI). Junior RHP Aaron Rawl was 9-1 with 2.03 ERA.

23. Troy, Mich. (33-7)

Outlook: LHPs Kris Krstich (13-1, 2.30 ERA) and Matt Lestan (12-2, 2.56 ERA) lead deep staff. SS Jim Geldhof batted .468 with 10 HRs and 16 doubles last year. Catcher Tony Cribari batted .415 with 12 HRs and team-high 54 RBI.

24. Kamiakin, Kennewick, Wash. (21-4)

Outlook: Seven starters return. Top three pitchers played for American Legion national runner-up. RHP-3B Jason Smith was 6-0 with 2.57 ERA and batted .376 with 29 RBI. CF Matt Smith (no relation) batted .402 with 24 RBI.

25. Silverado, Las Vegas (18-7)

Outlook: Arizona State signee Jeremy West provides power at first base, having batted lusty .576 with six HRs and 30 RBI as junior. Catcher Tommy Rojas batted .425 with 36 RBI, and LHP Robbie Van was 5-2 with 2.77 ERA.
  Regional rankings
South: 1. Wellington, West Palm Beach, Fla. (33-4); 2. Westminster Academy, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (33-2); 3. Bellaire, Houston (38-2); 4. Round Rock, Texas (26-4); 5. Prattville, Ala. (42-8); 6. Broughton, Raleigh, N.C. (13-10); 7. Oakland, Murfreesboro, Tenn. (37-2); 8. Lowndes County, Valdosta, Ga. (26-5); 9. Barbe, Lake Charles, La. (36-3); 10. Gulliver Prep, Miami (24-8).

East: 1. Steinert, Hamilton Township, N.J. (29-3); 2. Gloucester Catholic, Gloucester City, N.J. (27-4); 3. Riverdale Baptist, Upper Marlboro, Md. (35-4); 4. Chambersburg, Pa. (27-2); 5. North Allegheny, Wexford, Pa. (17-4); 6. Mount St. Joseph, Baltimore (22-6); 7. Cathedral Prep, Erie, Pa. (19-7); 8. Danvers, Mass. (25-1); 9. Jefferson, Shenandoah Junction, W.Va. (32-4); 10. Rockville, Vernon Rockville, Conn. (20-5).

West: 1. Rancho Bernardo, San Diego (24-6); 2. Fountain Valley, Calif. (16-10); 3. Canyon del Oro, Tucson, Ariz. (25-7); 4. Bellarmine Prep, San Jose (29-7); 5. Kamiakin, Kennewick, Wash. (21-4); 6. Silverado, Las Vegas (18-7); 7. Temecula Valley, Temecula, Calif. (21-6); 8. Green Valley, Henderson, Nev. (19-8); 9. Wilson, Long Beach, Calif. (26-5); 10. Richland, Wash. (23-3).

Midwest: 1. Providence Catholic, New Lenox, Ill. (30-3); 2. Owasso, Okla. (39-5); 3. Troy, Mich. (33-7); 4. Jenks, Okla. (23-16); 5. Elder, Cincinnati (27-7); 6. Carmel, Ind. (21-9); 7. DeSmet, St. Louis (19-13); 8. Carmel, Mundelein, Ill. (35-6); 9. Millard West, Omaha (28-4); 10. Start, Toledo, Ohio (23-3).
Rankings by USA TODAY’s Dave Krider

Gulliver Prep wins National Classic tournament
By Tim Dermody
FULLERTON, Calif.--For more than a decade, the National Classic has showcased some of the nation's top high school teams and players. That tradition continued in 2000 with a tournament featuring seven teams from Baseball America's preseason top 50 and dozens of players headed for professional or college ball.
Gulliver Prep of Miami, a team that opened the season ranked seventh but fell out of the poll early on, is now likely to get back in. The Raiders (23-4) won the tournament with a convincing 7-2 victory over upstart Palm Bay of Melbourne, Fla., in the title game. All four Florida teams in the event comprised its final four after winning one-run quarterfinal games.
Gulliver Prep responded to an early slump with a 15-game winning streak that ended before it headed west. It reached the title game with victories over No. 19 Clovis (Calif.), El Dorado of Placentia, Calif., and Cooper City (Fla.).
Starter Adam Acosta allowed one run over four innings against Palm Bay. He gave way to Tennessee-bound Travis NeSmith, who struck out five and gave up one hit in his relief stint. Center fielder Dan Figueroa doubled home three third-inning runs, and cleanup hitter Dennis Gomez added three hits and two RBIs.
Acosta (7-0) won three games and shortstop David Espinosa hit .600-3-6 with eight runs to earn tournament MVP honors. The Raiders outscored their opponents 38-15 in four games.
"When we put it all together, I don't think there's a team in the country that can beat us," Espinosa said. "If we hadn't lost those three games, which we shouldn't have, we'd definitely be ranked."
Palm Bay (20-8) reached the championship game by beating Shadow Mountain (Phoenix), Silverado (Las Vegas) and No. 1 Wellington (Fla.).
Wellington scored 12 first-inning runs on its way to a 20-4 victory over Cooper City in the third-place game. No. 16 Fountain Valley (Calif.) defeated Silverado 6-4 in the fifth-place game.
Wellington ace lefthander Sean Burnett pitched a one-hitter in a 1-0 win over Esperanza of Anaheim in the quarterfinals. The only hit was an infield single by Matt Parrish, whom Burnett promptly picked off. Burnett outdueled Esperanza lefthander Chris Brown, who allowed three hits.
Woodland (Calif.) beat Clovis 4-3 in the consolation championship game, with shortstop Dustin Pedroia supplying most of the heroics. The 5-foot-9, 155-pound junior belted a three-run homer in the third inning, and also robbed two Clovis batters of hits and RBIs by starting two double plays, including one in the final inning.
"I wouldn't trade him for any shortstop in America," said Woodland coach Bob Rinaldi. "He's the heart of our team."

National Classic Scoreboard
Gulliver Prep (Miami) 7, Palm Bay (Melbourne, Fla.) 2
Consolation Finals
Wellington (Fla.) 20, Cooper City (Fla.) 3
Other Games
Fountain Valley (Calif.) 6, Silverado (Las Vegas) 4
Esperanza (Anaheim) 12, El Dorado (Placentia, Calif.) 3
Woodland (Calif.) 4, Clovis (Calif.) 3
Riverside (Calif.) Poly 7, Shadow Mountain (Phoenix) 3
Taylorsville (Utah) 10, Delbarton School (Morristown, N.J.) 7
North Rockland (Thiells, N.Y.) 17, Newburgh (N.Y.) Free Academy 3
Palm Bay (Melbourne, Fla.) 7, Wellington (Fla.) 6 (8 innings)
Gulliver Prep (Miami) 15, Cooper City (Fla.) 2
Consolation Semifinals
Clovis (Calif.) 8, Taylorsville (Utah) 5
Woodland (Calif.) 12, Delbarton School (Morristown, N.J.) 2
Other Games
Silverado (Las Vegas) 12, Esperanza (Anaheim) 5
Fountain Valley (Calif.) 7, El Dorado (Placentia, Calif.) 2
Riverside (Calif.) Poly 12, North Rockland (Thiells, N.Y.) 0
Shadow Mountain (Phoenix) 7, Newburgh (N.Y.) Free Academy 6 (8 innings)
National No. 1 Wellington lost for the first time this season, albeit narrowly, in Thursday's National Classic semifinals.
Wellington actually came back from a 6-1 deficit, tying the game on Bo Diaz' infield single in the bottom of the seventh. But Palm Bay advanced to Friday's finals thanks to Billy Rightmire's RBI single in the eighth.
The Wolverines nearly came back again in the bottom of the eighth, loading the bases before winning pitcher David Danowski retired Robbie Orton on a ground ball to end the game.
The consolation finals, featuring California teams Clovis and Woodland, are also Friday.
Winners' Bracket–Quarterfinals
Wellington (Fla.) 1, Esperanza (Anaheim) 0
Palm Bay (Melbourne, Fla.) 13, Silverado (Las Vegas) 12
Cooper City (Fla.) 3, Fountain Valley (Calif.) 2
Gulliver Prep (Miami) 5, El Dorado (Placentia, Calif.) 4
Other Games
Taylorsville (Utah) 3, Riverside (Calif.) Poly 2
Clovis (Calif.) 13, North Rockland (Thiells, N.Y.) 2
Woodland (Calif.) 4, Shadow Mountain (Phoenix) 3
Delbarton School (Morristown, N.J.) 11, Newburgh (N.Y.) Free Academy 1
The state of Florida remained perfect Wednesday as the four schools from that state filled the four semifinal berths. All of them won one-run quarterfinal games to advance.
Wellington ace lefthander Sean Burnett pitched a one-hitter to turn aside Esperanza. The only hit was an infield single by Matt Parrish, whom Burnett promptly picked off. Burnett outdueled Esperanza lefthander Chris Brown, who allowed three hits.
The other three teams all came from behind, with Palm Bay scoring five times in the seventh inning to beat Silverado. Burt Clark hit a decisive three-run home run in that game, then pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the seventh.
Thursday's semifinal matchups are Wellington-Palm Bay and Gulliver Prep-Cooper City.
Wellington (Fla.) 20, Delbarton School (Morristown, N.J.) 1 (5 innings)
Gulliver Prep (Miami) 11, Clovis (Calif.) 7
Esperanza (Anaheim) 3, Newburgh (N.Y.) Free Academy 2
Cooper City (Fla.) 8, Riverside (Calif.) Poly 7 (8 innings)
El Dorado (Placentia, Calif.) 5, North Rockland (Thiells, N.Y.) 3
The rain-delayed first-round was completed Tuesday, with four Florida teams and three from California among the eight teams staying in contention for the championship.
Highly touted prospect David Espinosa hit two solo home runs for Gulliver Prep in its win over Clovis, and also pitched the last 1 1/3 innings.
Wednesday's winners' bracket matchups were Wellington-Esperanza, Palm Bay (Melbourne, Fla.)-Silverado (Las Vegas), Gulliver Prep-El Dorado and Fountain Valley (Calif.)-Cooper City.
The remainder of the tournament has been moved back a day, with the championship round now scheduled for Friday.
Fountain Valley (Calif.) 4, Taylorsville (Utah) 3 (5 innings)
Silverado (Las Vegas) 8, Woodland (Calif.) 2
Palm Bay (Melbourne, Fla.) 9, Shadow Mountain (Phoenix) 2
Just three of eight games were completed Monday in the National Classic high school tournament in Orange County, Calif., as rain played havoc with the opening-round schedule.
One of those three games was rain-shortened, with the rain actually changing the result. Fountain Valley (Calif.) led Taylorsville (Utah) 4-3 through five innings. Taylorsville took the lead 7-4 in the top of the sixth on Chris Mower's grand slam, but the rain stopped the game before Fountain Valley could bat in the bottom of the inning. The result reverted to five innings, with Fountain Valley winning.

High School Class of 2000: Top 100
Compiled by Allan Simpson and David Rawnsley
Player, Pos.
HS, Hometown
1. Scott Heard, c Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego L-R 6-1 180 Texas
2. Corey Smith, ss Piscataway (N.J.) HS R-R 6-0 200 Miami
3. Joe Torres, lhp Gateway HS, Kissimmee, Fla. L-L 6-2 170 Miami
4. Matt Harrington, rhp Palmdale (Calif.) HS R-R 6-3 180 Arizona State
5. David Espinosa, ss Gulliver Prep, Miami B-R 6-1 170 Miami
6. Dave Krynzel, of Green Valley HS, Henderson, Nev. L-L 6-1 180 Louisiana State
7. Jason Stokes, 1b Coppell (Texas) HS R-R 6-4 225 Texas
8. Mike Davern, rhp Brea Olinda HS, Brea, Calif. R-R 6-4 190 UCLA
9. Matt Wheatland, rhp Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego R-R 6-5 210 UCLA
10. Randy Truselo, rhp Delcastle Technical HS, New Castle, Del. R-R 6-3 190 Uncommitted
11. Nick Masset, rhp Pinellas Park (Fla.) HS R-R 6-4 180 Louisiana State
12. Luis Montanez, ss Coral Park HS, Miami R-R 6-0 165 Miami
13. Zach Miner, rhp Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) HS R-R 6-3 190 Miami
14. Sean Burnett, lhp Wellington (Fla.) HS L-L 6-2 170 Miami
15. Mark Phillips, lhp Hanover (Pa.) HS L-L 6-2 190 Louisiana State
16. Jamie Shields, rhp Hart HS, Newhall, Calif. R-R 6-3 190 Louisiana State
17. Skyler Fulton, of Capital HS, Olympia, Wash. L-R 6-2 195 Arizona State
18. Brian Hall, of Carlsbad (N.M.) HS R-R 6-0 175 Stanford
19. Sam Fuld, of Phillips Exeter Academy, Durham, N.H. L-L 5-10 175 Stanford
20. Anthony Pluta, rhp Las Vegas HS R-R 6-1 190 Long Beach State
21. Aaron Herr, ss Hempfield HS, Lancaster, Pa. R-R 5-11 185 Kentucky
22. Enrique Cruz, ss Bellaire (Texas) HS R-R 5-11 165 Rice
23. Tony Richie, c Bishop Kenny HS, Jacksonville R-R 6-1 195 Florida State
24. Anthony Giarratano, ss Christian Brothers HS, Marlboro, N.J. B-R 5-11 175 Tulane
25. Rocco Baldelli, of Bishop Hendricken HS, Warwick, R.I. R-R 6-4 180 Wake Forest
26. Adrian Gonzalez, 1b Eastlake HS, Chula Vista, Calif. L-L 6-2 190 San Diego State
27. Michael Stodolka, lhp/1b Centennial HS, Corona, Calif. L-L 6-2 195 UCLA
28. Jared Abruzzo, c El Capitan HS, Lakeside, Calif. B-R 6-3 220 Louisiana State
29. Laynce Nix, of Midland (Texas) HS L-L 6-1 190 Uncommitted
30. Ben Harrison, of Key West (Fla.) HS R-R 6-4 185 Florida
31. Grady Sizemore, of/1b Cascade HS, Mill Creek, Wash. L-L 6-2 195 Uncommitted
32. Kenny Nelson, rhp/3b Riverdale Baptist HS, Fort Washington, Md. R-R 6-1 185 Arizona State
33. Thomas Mitchell, rhp Bladenboro (N.C.) HS R-R 6-2 180 Uncommitted
34. Conor Jackson, 3b El Camino HS, Woodland Hills, Calif. R-R 6-4 195 California
35. Ryan Schroyer, c Canyon del Oro HS, Tucson R-R 5-11 195 Arizona State
36. Edgardo LeBron, ss Ramon Power HS, Las Piedras, P.R. R-R 6-2 175 Uncommitted
37. Jason Miller, lhp Sarasota (Fla.) HS R-L 6-2 190 Louisiana State
38. Dane Artman, lhp Westminster Academy, Fort Lauderdale L-L 6-3 200 Central Florida
39. Michael Reiss, rhp Vaughan HS, Thornhill, Ontario R-R 6-4 160 Houston
40. Scott Threinen, ss/of Kasson-Mantorville HS, Mantorville, Minn. R-R 6-1 190 Oklahoma State
41. Robert Ramsey, rhp Bowie HS, Austin R-R 6-2 165 Texas A&M
42. Anthony Brewer, of Simeon HS, Chicago R-R 6-0 165 Uncommitted
43. Dustin Moseley, rhp Arkansas HS, Texarkana, Ark. R-R 6-3 190 Arkansas
44. J.D. Durbin, rhp Coronado HS, Scottsdale, Ariz. R-R 6-1 190 Arizona State
45. Jose Cruz, of Florida Air Academy, Melbourne, Fla. B-R 5-10 160 Uncommitted
46. Shaun Boyd, of Vista HS, Oceanside, Calif. R-R 6-0 190 UCLA
47. Jason Bourgeois, ss Forest Brook HS, Houston R-R 5-9 165 Uncommitted
48. Chris Tritle, of Center Point-Urbana HS, Center Point, Iowa R-R 6-3 190 Iowa
49. Brian Montalbo, ss/rhp Dimond HS, Anchorage B-R 6-4 200 California
50. Jason Kubel, of Highland HS, Palmdale, Calif. L-R 6-0 180 Cal State Fullerton
51. Danny Touchet, rhp Palm Beach Lakes HS, West Palm Beach. Fla. R-R 6-1 190 Miami
52. Vince Sinisi, of The Woodlands (Texas) HS L-L 6-1 190 Texas
53. Mark Folsom, of West Orange HS, Winter Garden, Fla. R-R 6-5 210 Louisiana State
54. Chris Amador, ss Crespo HS, Camuy, P.R. R-R 5-10 150 Uncommitted
55. David Beigh, rhp Harrison HS, Battle Ground, Ind. R-R 6-5 230 Oklahoma State
56. Clark Girardeau, rhp Murphy HS, Mobile, Ala. R-R 6-4 190 South Alabama
57. Brian Wilson, rhp Londonderry (N.H.) HS R-R 6-1 190 Louisiana State
58. Brian Bruney, rhp Warrenton (Ore.) HS R-R 6-0 200 Uncommitted
59. Chad Petty, lhp Chalker HS, West Farmington, Ohio L-L 6-3 186 Louisville
60. Adam Wainwright, rhp Glynn Academy, St. Simons Island, Ga. R-R 6-0 190 Georgia Tech
61. Will Smith, of Palo Verde HS, Tucson L-R 6-0 175 Arizona State
62. Bob Keppel, rhp DeSmet HS, Chesterfield, Mo. R-R 6-4 175 Notre Dame
63. Kyle Bakker, lhp Millard West HS, Omaha L-L 6-9 240 Georgia Tech
64. Freddy Jimenez, of Monsignor Pace HS, Miami R-R 5-10 170 Fla. International
65. Morrin Davis, of Hillsborough HS, Tampa R-R 6-2 178 Uncommitted
66. Jon Huber, rhp North Fort Myers (Fla.) HS R-R 6-1 175 Uncommitted
67. Kevin Cust, of Immaculata HS, Flemington, N.J. B-R 6-0 180 St. John's
68. Justin Hileman, ss Palmyra Area HS, Palmyra, Pa. R-R 6-0 175 South Carolina
69. Joel Hanrahan, rhp Norwalk Community HS, Norwalk, Iowa R-R 6-4 205 Nebraska
70. Jake Whitesides, of Hickman HS, Columbia, Mo. L-R 5-10 185 Arizona
71. Jeremy King, rhp DeSoto HS, Nocatee, Fla. R-R 6-2 200 Florida
72. Mateo Miramontes, rhp Monte Vista HS, Pleasanton, Calif. R-R 6-4 210 Nevada
73. Tim McClendon, rhp Dr. Phillips HS, Orlando R-R 6-5 166 Miami
74. Kenny Perez, ss South Miami HS, Miami B-R 6-2 185 Uncommitted
75. Billy Silvestri, rhp Desert Mountain HS, Scottsdale, Ariz. R-R 6-0 160 Arizona State
76. Michael Aubrey, lhp/1b Southwood HS, Shreveport, La. L-L 6-0 170 Tulane
77. Travis Nesmith, lhp Gulliver Prep, Miami L-L 6-3 200 Uncommitted
78. Jason Sharber, rhp Oakland HS, Murfreesboro, Tenn. R-R 6-2 205 Vanderbilt
79. Jeff Tibbs, rhp Davis HS, Farmington, Utah R-R 6-2 170 Arizona State
80. Bobby Jenks, rhp/1b Timberlake HS, Spirit Lake, Idaho R-R 6-3 205 Uncommitted
81. Antoine Tellis, of Harlan HS, Chicago B-R 6-1 185 Uncommitted
82. Colby Miller, rhp/ss Weatherford (Okla.) HS R-R 6-2 175 Oklahoma
83. Tony Cancio, 1b Plant HS, Tampa R-R 6-3 220 Uncommitted
84. Jason Keyser, rhp Boyd County HS, Ashland, Ky. R-R 6-6 190 Uncommitted
85. Andrew Ehrlich, rhp Golden Valley HS, Merced, Calif. L-R 6-4 210 Stanford
86. Philip Akens, rhp Fallston HS, Bel Air, Md. R-R 6-5 220 Louisiana State
87. Cole Burzynski, of Navasota (Texas) HS R-R 6-4 210 Uncommitted
88. Todd Boessen, rhp Paul VI HS, Fairfax, Va. R-R 6-7 195 North Carolina
89. Brian Digby, rhp McIntosh HS, Peachtree City, Ga. R-R 6-3 185 Georgia State
90. Jason Kaanoi, rhp Kamehameha HS, Kanoehe, Hawaii R-R 5-11 170 Arizona State
91. Taylor Buckholz, rhp Springfield (Pa.) HS R-R 6-3 218 North Carolina
92. Carlos Quentin, of University of San Diego HS, San Diego R-R 6-2 210 Stanford
93. Joe Gaetti, of Millbrook HS, Raleigh, N.C. R-R 5-11 200 North Carolina State
94. Juan Serrato, rhp Norte Vista HS, Riverside, Calif. R-R 6-2 175 Uncommitted
95. Jesse Kozlowski, rhp Westlake HS, Thousand Oaks, Calif. R-R 6-4 165 Uncommitted
96. Michael Napoli, c/3b Flanagan HS, Cooper City, Fla. R-R 6-1 205 Louisiana State
97. Boof Bonser, rhp/1b Gibbs HS, Pinellas Park, Fla. R-R 6-4 225 Uncommitted
98. Ron Davenport, ss Leesville Road HS, Raleigh, N.C. L-R 6-1 185 Florida State
99. Alex Creel, rhp Oakmont HS, Roseville, Calif. R-R 6-3 185 Arizona State
100. Ryan Sadowski, rhp Western HS, Davie, Fla. R-R 6-3 195 Florida
Only high school seniors are eligible for this list (and the 2000 draft).
*College commitment in NCAA early signing period.

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This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Baseball America's
Preseason High School All-America Teams
Baseball America’s 2000 Preseason High School All-America team was selected based on observations by Baseball America staff members David Rawnsley and Allan Simpson and feedback from more than 40 scouting directors and major college recruiters. The criteria for selection is weighted more toward a player’s future potential than his performance to date. The text (follow links on first-team players) was written by Rawnsley.

Pos Player, High School/Hometown               Class  B-T   Ht.  Wt. College
C  Scott Heard, Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego   Sr.  L-R  6-1  190  Texas
1B  Jason Stokes, Coppell (Texas) HS             Sr.  R-R  6-5  225  Texas
IF  David Espinosa, Gulliver Prep, Miami         Sr.  B-R  6-1  175  Miami
IF  Luis Montanez, Coral Park HS, Miami          Sr.  R-R  6-1  175  Miami
IF  Corey Smith, Piscataway (N.J.) HS            Sr.  R-R  6-1  210  Miami
OF  Sam Fuld, Phillips Exeter Ac., Durham, N.H.  Sr.  L-L 5-10  178  Stanford
OF  Skyler Fulton, Capital  HS, Olympia, Wash.   Sr.  L-R  6-2  195  Arizona State
OF  Dave Krynzel, Green Val. HS, Henderson, Nev. Sr.  L-L  6-1  185  Louisiana State
UT  Zach Miner, Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) HS     Sr.  R-R  6-4  185  Miami
P  Sean Burnett, Wellington (Fla.) HS           Sr.  L-L  6-2  185  Miami
P  Mike Davern, Brea Olinda HS, Brea, Calif.    Sr.  R-R  6-4  190  UCLA
P  Matt Harrington, Palmdale (Calif.) HS        Sr.  R-R  6-3  180  Arizona State
P  Joe Torres, Gateway HS, Kissimmee, Fla.      Sr.  L-L  6-3  180  Miami
P  Matt Wheatland, Rancho Bernardo HS, SD       Sr.  R-R  6-5  205  UCLA
UT  Zach Miner, Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) HS     Sr.  R-R  6-4  185  Miami

Pos Player, High School/Hometown               Class  B-T   Ht.  Wt. College
C  Landon Powell, Apex (N.C.) HS                Jr.  B-R  6-3  200  None
1B  Casey Kotchman, Seminole (Fla.) HS           Jr.  L-L  6-3  200  None
IF  Enrique Cruz, Bellaire (Texas) HS            Sr.  R-R  5-9  175  Rice
IF  Justin Hileman, Palmyra (Pa.) HS             Sr.  R-R  6-0  180  South Carolina
IF  Anthony Giarratano, Christ. Bros. HS, N.J.   Sr.  B-R  6-0  175  Tulane
IF  Aaron Herr, Hempfield HS, Lancaster, Pa.     Sr.  R-R  6-0  180  Kentucky
OF  Rocco Baldelli, Bishop Hendricken HS, R.I.   Sr.  R-R  6-4  190  Wake Forest
OF  Brian Hall, Carlsbad (N.M.) HS               Sr.  R-R  6-0  175  Stanford
OF  Laynce Nix, Midland (Texas) HS               Sr.  L-L  6-0  185  None
UT  Kenny Nelson, Riverdale Baptist HS, Md.      Sr.  R-R  6-2  200  Arizona State
P  Gavin Floyd, Mt. St. Joseph HS, Md.          Jr.  R-R  6-5  195  None
P  Jason Miller, Sarasota (Fla.) HS             Sr.  L-L  6-2  190  Louisiana State
P  Mark Phillips, Hanover (Pa.) HS              Sr.  L-L  6-3  190  Louisiana State
P  Jamie Shields, Hart HS, Newhall, Calif.      Sr.  R-R  6-3  200  Louisiana State
P  Randy Truselo, Delcastle Tech, Wilm., Del.   Sr.  R-R  6-2  180  None
UT  Kenny Nelson, Riverdale Baptist HS, Md.      Sr.  R-R  6-2  200  Arizona State

Pos Player, High School/Hometown               Class  B-T   Ht.  Wt. College
C  Tony Richie, Bishop Kenny HS, Jacksonville   Sr.  R-R  6-1  195  Florida State
1B  Adrian Gonzalez, Eastlake HS, Calif.         Sr.  L-L  6-2  195  San Diego State
IF  Jason Bourgeois, Forest Brook HS, Houston    Sr.  R-R  6-0  180  None
IF  Conor Jackson, El Camino HS, Calif.          Sr.  R-R  6-4  195  California
IF  Austin Nagle, Barbe HS, Lake Charles, La.    Jr.  R-R  6-1  190  None
OF  Vince Sinisi, The Woodlands (Texas) HS       Sr.  L-L  6-1  185  Texas
OF  Jake Whitesides, Hickman HS, Columbia, Mo.   Sr.  L-R 5-11  180  Arizona
OF  Jason Kubel, Highland HS, Palmdale, Calif.   Sr.  L-R  6-1  185  Long Beach State
UT  Mike Stodolka, Centennial HS, Corona, Calif. Sr.  L-L  6-2  205  UCLA
P  Dane Artman, Westminster Academy, Ft. Laud.  Sr.  L-L  6-3  205  Central Florida
P  Kyle Bakker, Millard West HS, Omaha          Sr.  L-L  6-9  255  Georgia Tech
P  Kris Honel, Prov. Cath. HS, New Lenox, Ill.  Jr.  R-R  6-5  190  None
P  Thomas Mitchell, Bladenboro (N.C.) HS        Sr.  R-R  6-2  180  None
P  Erik Thompson, Pine Forest HS, Pensa., Fla.  Sr.  R-R 5-10  170  Florida
UT  Mike Stodolka, Centennial HS, Corona, Calif. Sr.  L-L  6-2  205  UCLA

First-Team Scouting Reports
  Scott Heard, Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego
Strengths: Complete defensive package, lefthanded-hitting ability.
Weaknesses: Offensive ceiling.
Comparable Player: Mike Lieberthal.
Heard will be in competition for more than just the No. 1 pick in the draft this spring. His prospect-laden Rancho Bernardo team could challenge for a national high school title as well.
Since he first played in the Area Code Games after his freshman year, Heard has been well known to scouts, primarily for his defense. As a junior, a nagging wrist problem was misdiagnosed and he missed almost all spring with what was eventually determined to be a fractured hamate bone.
That inactivity and Heard’s formerly narrow upper body put some question into scouts’ minds about his offensive potential. But he answered those concerns in the fall by adding close to 15 pounds of muscle through intensive work with a personal trainer. He now weighs in at 190, with significantly increased raw power.
  Jason Stokes, Coppell (Texas) HS
Strengths: Power, power, power.
Weaknesses: Patience at the plate, quickness.
Comparable Player: Pat Burrell.
Sam Carpenter, coach of the national powerhouse Dallas Mustangs summer team, called Stokes the most impressive power hitter he’s had. Considering two of Carpenter’s recent stars were Ben Grieve and Vernon Wells, that’s high praise. Stokes hit a team-record 32 home runs during the Mustangs’ two-month schedule last summer.
Stokes has good arm strength and speed for his size, and was playing some outfield early this spring. But his future will clearly be determined by his bat. His swing is short for a big man, and he has power from foul line to foul line.
  David Espinosa, Gulliver Prep, Miami
Strengths: Speed, body life and balance, arm strength.
Weaknesses: Power potential.
Comparable Player: Pokey Reese.
Espinosa is one of the top two-way players in the country, but he might not get to show it often. Gulliver Prep, another national-title contender, has two premium lefthanded pitching prospects, which puts Espinosa and his 94 mph fastball in the bullpen.
More important, it puts him at shortstop every day. His well-above-average arm strength, 6.5 speed in the 60 and overall athleticism give him ideal physical tools for the position. He’s a much better hitter from the right side, but his switch-hitting ability will be another bonus with scouts.
Espinosa’s .526 average led the victorious U.S. junior national team in last year’s world championships.
  Luis Montanez, Miami Coral Park HS
Strengths: Hands, arm strength, balance, pop in bat.
Weaknesses: Overall foot speed.
Comparable Player: Alex Gonzalez (Blue Jays).
Add Espinosa’s speed to Montanez’ tools, and you would create a high school shortstop who could easily be among the first picks in the draft. While Montanez has quick feet and excellent balance and mobility at shortstop, his straightaway speed is below-average, about 7.0 in the 60 and 4.45 to first base.
The rest of Montanez’ skills are first-rate. He plays shortstop with the flair of a player who has the utmost confidence in his hands and his ability to make all the plays. His strength and bat speed are superior to Espinosa’s. Montanez could become one of the new-generation shortstops who can produce runs and play defense.
  Corey Smith, Piscataway (N.J.) HS
Strengths: Bat speed, power potential, balance.
Weaknesses: Body type, hitting skills.
Comparable Player: Gary Sheffield.
Smith plays shortstop and pitches in high school, but he played a flawless third base at the premium showcases last summer. How well he takes care of his muscular body will determine where he ends up. Smith’s 6.7 speed and above-average arm attest to his current athletic ability.
But Smith’s ticket to the major leagues will be his bat. He has well-above-average bat speed with wood and can turn on any fastball with authority. He has had some difficulty with offspeed breaking pitches, which is not unusual for a hitter from a non-Sun Belt background.
  Sam Fuld, Phillips Exeter Academy, Durham, N.H.
Strengths: Hitting skills, defensive skills, approach.
Weaknesses: Size, speed.
Comparable Player: Lenny Dykstra.
Usually scouts ignore 5-foot-10, 175-pound outfielders with 6.8 speed. It’s a supreme compliment to Fuld’s baseball skills and ferocious attitude that he was a favorite among scouts for first-team All-America status.
Fuld’s raw speed is probably his primary physical weakness. He more than makes up for it with outstanding jumps in center field, both coming in and going back. His arm strength is above-average. He doesn’t look like a power hitter, but his bat speed, quickness to the ball and excellent extension give him surprising pop.
As a top student at an elite prep school who is signed to go to Stanford, Fuld’s signability will be closely watched by scouts.
  Skyler Fulton, Capital HS, Olympia, Wash.
Strengths: Power/speed combination, athleticism.
Weaknesses: Baseball skills, body stiffness.
Comparable Player: Tyrell Godwin.
Fulton’s tools package is eerily similar to that of North Carolina college All-American Tyrell Godwin. That’s a good news/bad news evaluation.
The good news is that Fulton, a top football prospect, is one of the best athletes in the 2000 high school class. He has strong, square shoulders and a sprinter’s lower half. The ball jumps off his bat due to his strength, and he is a powerful runner under way.
Like Godwin, Fulton’s baseball skills have been held back by his involvement with football, though indications seem to be that he might pass on a two-sport career at Arizona State to concentrate on baseball. His swing mechanics and hitting instincts are the least advanced of his skills, and he could struggle initially with wood bats. His arm is average but could improve as his upper body loosens up.
  Dave Krynzel, Green Valley HS, Henderson, Nev.
Strengths: Speed, body type, overall tools package.
Weaknesses: Power potential.
Comparable Player: Johnny Damon.
It’s easy to classify Krynzel as a speed player based on his 6.31-second 60-yard time last summer. Unlike many sprinters, though, Krynzel’s speed is "usable," in scouts’ terminology. He gets out of the batter’s box quickly and already has sound instincts on the bases and in the outfield.
His fundamentals have been nicely developed at one of the premier high school programs in the nation. He has a wiry-strong frame that should fill out as he matures, and already generates good bat speed with a slashing, line-drive swing. Interestingly, Krynzel will sometimes separate his hands on the bat handle for better control. His arm is solid average for center field.
Krynzel hit .440 with a team-high six doubles and eight stolen bases for the world champion USA junior team last summer.
  Sean Burnett, Wellington (Fla.) HS
Strengths: Feel for pitching, command, projectability.
Weaknesses: Present raw stuff.
Comparable Player: Tom Glavine.
It’s not surprising that Burnett pitches for Wellington High, a Florida powerhouse. Coach Scott Benedict also tutored 1999 first-round pick Bobby Bradley. Both players were judged by Baseball America to have the best command in the nation in their respective classes.
Burnett’s age, in fact, should make him a high school junior. His recent physical maturation, along with changing his curveball grip to get tighter spin, contributed to a notable improvement in the velocity and sharpness of his pitches. His fastball has gone from 86-87 mph to 89-91 since early last summer.
Burnett’s best skill is his ability to command the location and speed of his pitches. He has the instinctive ability to adjust his fastball and changeup velocities and locations, making the pitches interchangeable and indistinguishable. Not coincidentally, Burnett tapes or watches as many of Tom Glavine’s starts as possible.
  Mike Davern, Brea-Olinda HS, Brea, Calif.
Strengths: Power fastball, athletic ability.
Weaknesses: Consistency, curveball velocity.
Comparable Player: Jason Schmidt.
Davern fits the profile of a power pitcher. He has broad shoulders and hips, and is just beginning to add muscle to his long frame. His fastball velocity improved from 87-89 mph after his sophomore year to 92-94 last summer. He isn’t the type of pitcher who will just touch high-velocity numbers, but will sit steadily in the plus velocity range.
Davern’s curveball needs fine-tuning, but could become a solid second pitch. He gets a tight spin and break on the pitch, but only throws it 68-70 mph. That’s too large a separation to deceive better hitters.
  Matt Harrington, Palmdale (Calif.) HS
Strengths: Fastball velocity, pitching ability, looseness.
Weaknesses: Identifying a breaking ball.
Comparable Player: Gil Meche.
Harrington has taken advantage of the year-round baseball environment in Southern California to develop into the hardest-throwing high school pitcher in the country. Scouts at a pre-Christmas tournament timed the loose, lanky righthander as high as 97 mph.
Coupled with Harrington’s raw velocity is an advanced concept of how to locate the ball and move it around the strike zone. Against the Japanese junior national team in late August, he pitched a complete-game victory over a contact-conscious team without recording a strikeout.
In addition to maintaining his velocity during the spring, Harrington must work on developing better feel with his breaking stuff. He has thrown both a curveball and a slider during the last year, but tends to throw the curve too soft and the slider too hard.
  Joe Torres, Gateway HS, Kissimmee, Fla.
Strengths: Curveball, fastball movement, athleticism.
Weaknesses: Raw mechanically.
Comparable Player: Omar Daal.
Torres doesn’t have the finely tuned mechanics and year-round pitching program of other All-Americans, but he may surpass them in raw stuff and athletic ability. He is polished enough to have gone 2-0, 2.16 in the World Junior Championship last summer for Team USA.
Torres is an above-average athlete with long, loose arms and legs. He throws from a mid-three-quarters release point, which gives his 88-93 mph fastball exceptional sinking and running action.
While some pitchers can’t get their curveballs over the plate consistently from such an angle, Torres appears to have no problem. His curve has sharp biting action and good two-plane break.
  Matt Wheatland, Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego
Strengths: Projectable strength, leverage, curveball.
Weaknesses: Mechanical consistency, injury history.
Comparable Player: Chris Carpenter.
Wheatland joins batterymate Scott Heard on BA’s All-America first team, and may also join him in the first round of the draft–a distinction that has happened only twice previously in draft history.
The 6-foot-5 righthander has a solid average fastball and uses his height to get excellent leverage to the plate. His best pitch, though, is a hard overhand curve that has a late, downward break.
Wheatland also plays first base, and even hit a home run at the World Junior Championship. Scouts express some concern over minor knee problems that Wheatland has experienced in the past.
  Zach Miner, Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) HS
Strengths: Fastball velocity and life, athleticism.
Weaknesses: Physical strength.
Comparable Player: Joe Nathan.
Miner is one prospect who could potentially hurt his draft status as a pitcher by his work in the field. With an angular 6-foot-3 frame, Miner doubles as the ace pitcher/starting shortstop for a strong Palm Beach Gardens High program. His hustling, all-out style and self-confessed inability to maintain his weight have left him fatigued in the past.
When he’s fresh, Miner has a live, sinking fastball that can top out at 94 mph. His curveball is a quality secondary pitch that he can throw consistently for strikes. Miner gets some deception from his arm action, which is very short in back but long and loose out front.

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