Uncommitted 2020 Runners

Walt Jones
Louisiana Assistant Scouting Director

For years scouts and recruiters have used five tools to evaluate players and decide where each player fits within their program or organization. Those tools being run, defense, throw, hit and power. Today, we will begin a new series entitled Top Tools, which will periodically take a look into the individual tools of top prospects across the state of Louisiana. 

Defensive tools are seen as the ability to defend at your given position. While watching a infielder simply field a ground ball and throw it across the infield, an outfielder catch and throw to a base or a catcher receive a pitch and throw down to second-base, evaluators can decide where a player’s defensive tools fit. This tool along with the hit tool are the most subjective.  

The hit tool is basically a players ability to hit for average. This tool can usually be linked to a player’s batting average but in the evaluation process, often times the evaluator doesn’t have a batting average readily accessible. Therefore, the process of grading out a players hit tool is a skill.

The run, throw and power tools can all be quantified meaning you can use a radar gun or a stopwatch to determine the level of these tools. With the emergence of data-driven devices such as Trackman and the use of lasers for 60-yard dashes, the grading of these tools are becoming even more precise. 

In our first installment of Top Tools, we will dive into the run tool starting first with Louisiana’s 2020 class. Why do we value the run tool? “Speed never slumps,” is a very valid and common response. Speed can turn hits into outs on defensive, can turn outs into hits on offense, can turn singles into doubles and overall can simply add an element of pressure to opponents. Whether you’re of an offensive or defensive bias, we can all agree that speed impacts the game of baseball in multiple ways. 

Today we dive into the 2020 class by taking a look at a few of the top uncommitted runners in the 2020 class. OF/IF Zach Ordeneaux (Catholic HS), IF Reese Lipoma (St. Amant HS) and OF Matthew Bihm (Central Private HS) are three players at the top of the list when discussing the run tool.

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