Observations from Texas Tech/University of Kansas Baseball Game
I saw Texas Tech in action against the University of Kansas Friday night. Three Tech players stood out as being of particular interest.: outfielder Barrett Barnes, second baseman Jamodrick McGruder, and starting pitcher Duke von Schamann.
Barrett Barnes, OF: Barnes is rapidly establishing himself as one of the top outfield prospects available in the 2012 draft. Currently hitting .333/.444/.608 with six homers, 20 walks, and 19 strikeouts in 102 at-bats, Barnes is willing to work counts and has excellent bat speed. He's also stolen 13 bases in 13 attempts, although he got caught leaning the wrong way once in this game and was picked off by the pitcher. He has the range and arm strength for center, and overall I was very impressed. The tools are clearly here and the skills look solid, too. He doesn't turn 21 until July. Given the relatively weak college hitting class this year, he has a definite shot at the first round.
Jamodrick McGruder, 2B: Although undersized at 5-7, 170, McGruder is an excellent athlete with above-average speed. He's got some sock in his bat, using a slight uppercut swing and showing almost as much bat speed as Barnes. He's hitting .355/.527/.495 on the year with 28 walks and 19 strikeouts in 93 at-bats, along with 18 steals in 23 attempts. He has the quickness to handle second base and looked solid defensively in this game, although he's made eight errors on the season. He could be a draft bargain, and like Barnes he doesn't turn 21 until after the draft.
Duke Von Schamann, RHP: Schamann went nine innings, allowing two hits, one walk, one run, with six strikeouts. The 21-year-old right-hander is a redshirt sophomore and is draft-eligible. Listed at 6-4, 215, he's pitched very well this year with a 1.74 ERA and a 35/8 K/BB in 52 innings with just 33 hits allowed. His fastball ranged between 88 and 92 MPH and he's not afraid to throw inside. He mixed in a 78-80 MPH breaking ball and an 81-82 MPH changeup. His command was quite good and he looks like a plausible middle-round pick to me.