Midwest Futures Spotlight: Blakely and Kauffman Top Class of 2016 in Michigan



By Mike Penn
Michigan Director of Scouting

The Class of 2016 in Michigan has players that are starting to emerge from the shadows and rise to the top. There are plenty of players in the Class of 2016 that have made names for themselves that the PBR coverage area will soon be familiar with, but two have risen to the top this summer.

Karl Kauffmann was instrumental in helping Brother Rice make a run to Battle Creek this year. The 6-foot-1 RHP hails from Brother Rice, a traditional baseball powerhouse.  Rice, as they are known in the state, has produced players such  Matt Ruppenthal, a Vanderbilt commit, Nick Plummer, a Michigan commit, and current Colorado Rockies' infielder D.J. LeMahieu. Kauffmann stands to be the next big recruit that will cause college recruiters to knock on the Brother Rice door.

This year at Top Prospect Games Kauffmann sat an easy 84-86 mph and bumped 87 mph. Despite being a freshman, he has a calm, cool demeanor and carries himself extremely well.  Additionally, he is more than just a pitcher and he may make his way into the lineup at the Midwest Futures Games as well.

Drew Blakely, like Kauffmann, has drawn serious interest from schools already. Blakely, from Gull Lake, has an electric arm.  Whether it is on the mound or behind the dish Blakely can flat out throw it.  This past year between his high school and summer seasons he threw out an astounding 69% (18-29) of base runners who tried to steal against him.

For as much as Blakely can throw it, he can swing it just as well.  He was proficient at the dish, leading his team in batting average, OBP, and slugging percentage. Needless to say, Blakely should impress in a variety of ways this weekend.

 

 

Midwest Future Game 2013 SLIDE