Five Takeaways From Jupiter
October 29, 2015
By Nathan Rode
While it could be argued that there is no true offseason in the baseball universe, the World Wood Bat Championship in Jupiter, FL, is certainly a signal that things are quieting down. Looking back on the weekend, a few things jumped out to me as I took in the talent that was on display. Here are some takeaways from Jupiter as we head toward the winter months.
It’s A Banner Year For Wisconsin
This certainly didn’t become evident in the last week. We’ve known it for some time. The top 10 prospects in the state’s 2016 class are committed to programs in the ACC, Big Ten, PAC 12 or SEC, and a few players will be watched closely by scouts as we approach the draft next June. C Ben Rortvedt (Verona Area HS, WI) struggled at the plate in Jupiter, going 3-for-19, but scouts have seen what he can do with the bat and one weekend isn’t going to kill him. While he didn’t stand out with the bat, he did cut down two base stealers in one game and looked like a capable defender. SS Gavin Lux (Indian Trail HS, WI) didn’t struggle with the bat, going 8-for-17, all while showing his usual strong defense. Those two on their own make it a strong class, but then you mix in RHP Nate Brown (Arrowhead HS, WI), who pitched five shutout innings against the Florida Burn, allowing four hits and striking out four. His fastball range from 89-92 mph and he mixed in a good slider at 79-81. Wisconsin is tough to scout with weather complicating the schedule and shortening the season before the draft. Wisconsin has had three high school picks in the top 10 rounds twice (1969-1970) and four once (1965). Signability will obviously come into play, but we could see those kinds of numbers again.