Prep Baseball Report

On the Hunt: Jupiter Day 4 Notebook

By Shooter Hunt
National Crosschecker

Playoff Sunday kicked off at the World Wood Bat Championship in the cool, early morning with energy and close games all around. Two Georgia underclass pitchers had scouts buzzing with their huge, physical size and power fastballs. 2018 RHP Kumar Rocker (North Oconee HS, GA), a Vanderbilt commit, continued to impress with his 92-94 mph fastball that settled into 90-92 after the first inning with a sharp 77-78 slider. Rocker looks every bit the part of a possible 2018 first overall pick with his 6-foot-4, 235-pound frame and electric right arm. Though Rocker was very good in Team Elite Prime’s first round victory, fellow Georgian 2018 RHP Carter Raffield (Bleeckley County HS, GA) may have been even more impressive. The Georgia-commit sat 89-91 for much of his four innings of work in which he struck out nine, walked two, and gave up four hits with no runs. The 6-foot-5, 215-pounder was an intimidating sight, especially for the west coast AZ T-Rex Rawlings squad in the the early eight o’clock hour. Raffield’s fastball appeared to pick up velocity the closer it got to the plate, and the late swings that he consistently received demonstrated just how quickly the pitches were getting on the hitters. He also mixed in a firm 78-80 slider with tight spin and tilt that was thrown for strikes and moved out of the zone late in counts. Raffield flashed changeups in warm ups that showed fade with easy arm-action thrown for strikes. The right-hander has a repeatable motion in which he drives with his hips towards the plate with a slight hook in the back. Raffield looks every bit the part of a future frontline starter in the SEC or MLB.


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