The summer showcase circuit continued rolling along with the start of the Area Code Games in Long Beach, Calif., on Tuesday. The West Coast event comes right on the heels of the East Coast Pro Showcase, which wrapped up in Tampa, Fla. last Thursday.
In between the rain that has hit Florida hard of late, a lot of talent for the 2016 Draft class got a chance to show what it can do in front of hundreds of scouts. After talking to several of those scouts, here's a quick look at the high schoolers who stood out the most over the course of the four-day event.
1. Jason Groome, LHP, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
Groome will actually return to New Jersey and attend Barnegat High School after a year at IMG. Wherever he is, he's looking more and more like a potential top-of-the-Draft type pick. The left-hander gave up one hit over three scoreless innings, walking none and striking out four. Groome touched 95 mph with his fastball, sat in the 92-93 mph range and showed an ability to paint corners with it. The Vandy commit also showed a very good 76-77 mph breaking ball. He also doesn't turn 17 until the end of August. Remaining event: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16
2. Joe Rizzo, 3B, Oakton HS (Oak Hill, Va.)
The left-handed-hitting third baseman is quickly gaining a reputation as one of the better pure bats in the high school class. Rizzo went 4-for-12 with one of the event's few home runs, while consistently making hard contact all week. If the South Carolina commit can continue to show usable power in games, he'll continue to rise up the charts. Remaining events: Area Code Games, Aug. 4-9; Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16
3. Ian Anderson, RHP, Shenendehowa HS East (Clfiton Park, N.Y.)
In his 2 2/3 innings of work, Anderson allowed just one hit and struck out four. More important was the ability he showed in mixing his pitches well from a clean and repeatable delivery. Anderson showed the ability to throw a fastball that touched 94-95 mph, a curve and a changeup all for strikes. He's projectable and, being from the Northeast, there might be even more in the tank. Remaining events: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16; USA Baseball Trials, Aug. 16-19
4. Brandon McIlwain, OF, Council Rock North HS (Newtown, Pa.)
McIlwain is committed to South Carolina as a two-sport standout and potential future quarterback for the Gamecocks. Scouts love his power-speed combination and love the idea of what kind of player McIlwain, who went 4-for-12 in Tampa, could be if he were focusing solely on baseball. Remaining events: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16
5. Austin Bergner, RHP, Windermere (Fla.) Prep
Bergner doesn't have the most textbook delivery you'll see, but that has just added to his effectiveness. The North Carolina commit did give up a run at East Coast, but on just one hit while walking none and striking out four. He has a projectable 6-foot-4 body and good stuff, throwing his fastball in the low 90s and showing a very good breaking ball as well. Remaining events: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16; USA Baseball Trials, Aug. 16-19
6. Will Benson, OF, The Westminster Schools (Atlanta, Ga.)
Benson continues to stand out for his considerable raw tools and physical presence. The 6-foot-5 Duke commit looks the part of a prototypical right fielder, complete with plus arm. He went 3-for-12 with a double and a pair of RBIs, ran a 6.5-second 60-yard dash and made loud contact throughout the week. Remaining events: Under Armour All-America Game, Aug. 15; USA Baseball Trials, Aug. 16-19
7. Tyler Baum, RHP, West Orange HS (Winter Garden, Fla.)
Baum opened some eyes by coming out throwing 94-95 mph out of the gate, and he used a nasty hammer of a curve to strike out the side. He showed a more efficient side after that, allowing a run on three hits over three innings while striking out four. Scouts liked the North Carolina commit's combination of stuff, his ability to mix his pitches and his command. Remaining events: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16
8. Luis Curbelo, SS, Puerto Rico Baseball Academy
Curbelo may not be a shortstop when all is said and done, with a move to third as he fills out his 6-foot-3 frame a distinct possibility. Beyond his performance on paper (2-for-8), he really stood out with his ability to swing the bat from the right side of the plate, with a ton of bat speed and a feel for hitting. Remaining events: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16
9. Greg Veliz, RHP/SS, Key West (Fla.) HS
Veliz showed abilities on both sides of the ball. At the plate, the left-handed hitter went 3-for-6 with a double. But scouts like him better as a right-handed pitcher. Veliz struck out three in his two innings of work (allowing two runs, one earned, on two hits), showing a premium fastball. At 6-foot-1, the Miami commit needs to work on the angle to his pitches, but there's a lot to work with. Remaining events: Under Armour All-America Game, Aug. 15
10. Drew Mendoza, 3B, Lake Minneola (Fla.) HS
Committed to Florida State, Mendoza swung the bat very well in Tampa, going 4-for-9 with a pair of doubles and two RBIs. The 6-foot-4 infielder has the kind of left-handed power bat teams covet at the hot corner. Remaining events: Perfect Game All-American Classic, Aug. 16
Others of note: Carlos Cortes, 2B/OF, Ovideo (Fla.) HS; Khalil Lee, OF, Flint Hill School (Oakton, Va.); Josh Lowe, RHP/3B, Pope HS (Marietta, Ga.); Jesus Luzardo, LHP, Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS (Parkland, Fla.); Delvin Perez, SS, International Baseball Academy (San Juan, PR); Alex Speas, RHP, McEachern HS (Powder Springs, Ga.)
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com Follow @JonathanMayo on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.