03/19/09 10:00 AM ET
Draft Report: Leaning to the left
Purke, Matzek compete for position as top high school southpaw
By Jonathan Mayo / MLB.com
This week's Draft Report will be decidedly left-leaning.
No, not politically. On the mound.
It's not that all of the eight high schoolers in this week's edition are southpaws. Only two are, but they are two huge ones.
Depending on who you talk to, either Matthew Purke from Texas or Tyler Matzek in California is the top high school left-handed pitcher in the Class of 2009. Throw in Tyler Skaggs, also a Cali kid, and TDR has hit on the top trio of lefties in the land. Not too shabby, huh?
We didn't stop there, either. TDR had Georgia on its mind, gathering info from those (and there were many) who attended the big high school tournament, the LaGrange Invitational. Draft fans remember last year's event, where two first-rounders faced off. It was the kind of matchup scouts love to see: Ethan Martin on the mound, Eric Hosmer at the plate. And it was the kind of result they love to see as well, with Martin blowing Hosmer away a couple of times and Hosmer going deep the third time around. This year's event had a terrific collection of talent as well, and we've got reports on a trio of prepsters who had their skills on display.
Finally, TDR headed to Florida for a shortstop and back to Texas for a toolsy outfielder and a right-hander many have been high on. Even though this has been a high school-heavy report, we still need to have a look-in at that right-hander from San Diego State.
Last outing: March 13
Result: 4-3 win
Game stats: 7 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 14 K
Season stats: 4-0, 27 1/3 IP, 19 H, 6 ER, 5 BB, 59 K, .192 BAA, 1.98 ERA
Tyler Matzek, LHP
Capistrano Valley HS, Mission Viejo, Calif.
In a matchup with Orange Lutheran, the southpaw really showed up to pitch. He was the complete package, flashing his array of stuff, command and poise on the mound. Complete Report
Matthew Purke, LHP
Klein HS, Klein, Texas
The tall, thin and projectable lefty faced off against Cypress Creek High School and stepped up with a big fastball, a good breaking ball and a good idea of how to use them. Complete Report
Austin Maddox, C
Eagle's View Academy, Jacksonville, Fla.
Maddox has huge raw power and just as big of an arm from behind the plate. Whether he can stay there because of his size is a matter of some debate. Complete Report
Donavan Tate, OF
Cartersville HS, Cartersville, Ga.
The toolsy center fielder showed some power, some plate discipline and some ability to play defense, though he is still not a polished product in quite the same way as last year's No. 1 overall pick, Tim Beckham, was coming out of the Georgia high school ranks. Complete Report
Zack Wheeler, RHP
East Paulding HS, Dallas, Ga.
The right-hander got good grades overall for his performance in the tournament, with an above-average fastball and signs of a plus breaking ball. Command was a little bit of an issue, but some thought it was worse than others. Complete Report
Matthew Graham, RHP
Oak Ridge HS, Conroe, Texas
The big, strong righty showed plenty of arm strength recently against Conroe High, but he had trouble commanding the baseball and showing any consistent secondary offering. Complete Report
Everett Williams, OF
McCallum HS, Austin, Texas
Facing Temple High recently, Williams had his tools on display, with good speed, defense and some hitting ability. The issue is that he swings and misses a bit too much and the concern is whether he can find consistency with the bat. Complete Report
Down in Miami
Stephen Perez, SS
Gulliver Prep School, Miami, Fla.
Perez is one of the more interesting middle infield prospects coming out of the prep ranks this year. He can field, even though he's not blessed with speed. That, and some good switch-hitting ability, were on display in a good matchup against Bishop Verot. Complete Report
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.