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2011 MLB Draft-June 6-8, by Projected Players' Geography

2011 MLB Draft-June 6-8, by Projected Players' Geography

The upcoming MLB draft doesn't have the unanimous first picks like the last 2 years. Strasburg and Harper, last year, were both special talents.
Looking at the broader picture this year, players by geography, California (C), Florida (F) and Texas (T) continue to provide the largest number of projected draftees.
This dominance is also true for highest ranking High School (HS) and College baseball teams, but one could argue that is logical. But there are thousands of HS teams and hundreds of Div. I baseball teams, but why are 40-50% of the top 25 or 100 teams usually from these 3 States, always?
Baseball America (BA) May 31 edition had 4 teams from F, 4 from T and 2 from C, or 40% of the top 25 College teams from these 3 States. If you look at BA, May 27 projected top college 33 players, 6 are from F, 5 from C and 3 from T, or 46% from these 3 States. In the May 17 edition, BA listed the top projected players from all levels by positions. Of the 223 players, 40 came from C, 25 from T and 20 from F or 38% of the top picks deep into the draft from these 3 States. In the BA May 24 issue ranking the top HS teams in the nation, C had 5, T had 5 and F had 4, or 56% of the top ranked HS teams came from these 3 States. 
If you look at the rosters of the top ranked Colleges in those States, the majority of the players come from those States. Now most students go to a college within a few hundred miles of their home, but the top ranked colleges recruit all over including the other 2 States. But if the HSs in the State are top ranked, why recruit elsewhere?
There are other southern states that have powerful baseball programs but not the number of these 3 States.
The HS teams in those 3 States play more games. Most of the teams in the F HS finals this year played close to 30 games in this season. The weather for outside practices is better, the HS facilities are better, obviously the competition is better.
As examples of the talent in Florida at the HS level, nine teams in the 24 team Florida HS baseball final playoffs were ranked in the top 50 teams in the nation: #4 Archbishop McCarthy, Southwest Ranches; #9 Alonso, Tampa; #11 Orangewood Christian, Maitland; #12 Pace; #15 Lakeland; #16 Pensecola; #27 Bishop Verot, Ft. Myers; #31 Tampa Jesuit; #39 W. Boca Raton.
Regarding top players in the Florida HS playoffs, this year's group of players projected to go early in the draft: the most talked about was Jose Fernandez, a 6'4", 230 lbs. right hander from Alonso HS, Tampa, projected to go early in the first round. He has been clocked in the high 90's. (He, his mother and sister defected from Cuba 3 years ago. How they defected is a story by itself.) Mike Kelly, 6'5", 195 lbs right hander from W. Boca Raton, could also go in the first round. Pace had SS Addison Russell who was already projected to be top player for 2012. W. Boca Raton had pre season All Amer. SS Tyler Green. Bishop Verot had one of the nations top 1st baseman, Dan Vogelbach. Bishop Verot also had one of the nation's top right hander, Hudson Boyd.
There were 3 sons of former MLB players rated high in the draft. Dante Bichette Jr. P/INF., senior, from Orangewood Christian. His father played for 13 years in MLB, all the 1990's. Alexander Fernandez P, senior, for Archbishop McCarthy. His father Alex played 10 years in the MLB mainly for the White Sox in the 1990's. And Lance McCullers Jr. P, JR, from Tampa Jesuit, was throwing in the mid 90's in the sixth inning, in his finals. Senior McCullers was a reliever for 7 years in the MLB for the Padres in the late 1980's.
In spite of the NCAA recently changing the date colleges could start their season, to "level" the playing field", and many colleges go "south" for preseason conference games, when you go back north in March and April, its still cold and wet! 
This seems to say if you have a young player who looks to have exceptional baseball talents, you should go south to play HS, or at least college if your dream is to play at the top pro level.
Anthony Rendon is projected to be the first pick in the draft Monday. Photo of Anthony Rendon, courtesy of Rice University Athletics.


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