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All American Game : : Story
Here Comes the Aflac Classic
Published: Monday, August 01, 2005

In just three year's the Aflac Classic has become the most prestigious event in high school baseball. This year 38 of the nation's top high school prospects will compete at Cal Ripken Stadium. The 4 day event starts with the players arrival and players dinner Aug 9th.

Aug 10th the players will workout at Towson University.

Aug 11th the Aflac teams will hold a scrimmage at Towson in the morning. Then in the afternoon some 50 to 60 more top ranked prospects will workout for the highest level scouts in baseball at the Perfect Game Showcase at Towson.

Aug 12th the Aflac players will workout in the morning and the Perfect Game players will play a double header that afternoon.

Aug 13th the Aflac game will start with the homerun derby at noon followed by the 9 inning game televised nationally by Fox Sports.

The First Two Years Produced Many 1st Rounders

The Aflac Classic has produced 18 first round picks in the first two years. Including the #1 pick in the draft both years. Several others were selected in rounds 2 through 5. A few Aflac players who were projected to go very early in the draft slipped down due to injury and/or signability issues. Players like Nick Adenhart, Dexter Fowler, and others were not drafted early, but ended up signing for early round money.

2nd Year for the PG Showcase

The PG Showcase was established last year because of the huge number of highest level scouts who attended. The scouts and college coaches requested holding a PG event so they could see even more top players. The Aflac players worked out in the mornings, but this left scouts with nothing to do in the afternoons and evenings leading up to the Aflac game. The PG workout and game was very successful for the players who attended and the 22 Scouting Directors and large number of recruiters and other scouts on hand. Several of the PG Showcase players were drafted ahead of some of the Aflac players due in large part to their performance in Baltimore.

It is hard to select only 38 players a year before the actual draft. We must go by position and often top players are left out. The PG Showcase allows these top players the opportunity to perform in front of the same highest level scouts and recruiters.

           
          Matt Bush                        Chris Nelson                     Greg Golson                   Trevor Plouffe

         
         Justin Upton                  Cameron Maybin            Christopher Volstad          Andrew McCutchen
Just a few of the 18 first round picks from the first two years of the Aflac Classic

Highest Level Scouting
This year we understand there are 28 of the 30 Scouting Directors who have confirmed they will attend. We would expect all 30 to be there. This gives the Aflac Classic and the PG Showcase at Towson the most influential scouting crowd in all of high school baseball. The PG/Baseball America October Tournament would be the only rival. The October tournament is recognized as the biggest scouting event in all of baseball with 600 to 700 scouts and recruiters attending each year. However, nothing can rival the Aflac for number of Scouting Directors and highest level scouts.

The Top High School Talent in the Nation

This year the Aflac rosters once again will provide viewers with a look at the top ranked high school players in America. Led by #1 ranked 6-5 RHP Jordan Walden who is one of the many great arms from Texas. Walden projects off the charts and throws with mid to upper 90 mph velocity. Florida prep and Aflac player is #2 ranked Cody Johnson. Johnson a 6-4/190 OF has outstanding tools and ranks as the top position player and hitter in America. He is also one of the youngest in his class at only 16 years old. #3 ranked Matt Latos 6-6 RHP from Florida has been throwing in the mid 90s all year. Latos has been up as high as 97 on several occasions. Another Texas RHP who also has been throwing mid 90s is Kyle Drabek. Kyle's father is former Cy Young winner Doug Drabek. Jeremy Jeffress RHP from Virginia is yet another hard throwing prep who has been up as high as 96 mph. 6-9 RHP Dellin Betances could be the best of all by next year's draft. We have seen him as high as 94 mph and he will throw better yet. Colton Willems Florida 6-5 RHP is yet another we have seen throw in the 94 mph range. New Jersey's Gerald Sullivan surprised everyone by throwing 94 mph early this summer. There is no shortage of quality lefties this year either. Oklahoma's Brett Anderson is the highest ranked lefty in America. Not far behind are Alabama's Kasey Kiker and Texas southpaws Taylor Hammack and Aaron Miller. There are many 06 LHPs in the country that are very good. California lefty Gavin Brooks was maybe the best as a junior, but has been injured this year.

Top California prospects Grant Green, Chris Pamelee, Hank Conger, and other west coast high profile players will be on the West roster. Florida has a loaded 06 class. Top national level prospects like INF Chris Marrero, C Max Sapp, OF Derrick Robinson, and several others will dot the East roster.

The homerun contest should be very interesting because several the most powerful long ball hitters will be in Maryland. Sapp, Marrero, Johnson, Conger, Parmelee, California's Devin Shepard and Indiana's Andrew Clark will be among the favorites to win the trophy.

The athletes that will perform in Maryland include World Class types. Derrick Robinson is undoubtedly the fastest player in high school baseball. In fact, he might be the fastest player in high school history. Not far behind Robinson is super athlete Brent Brewer from Georgia, Jeff Rapoport from California and a couple others.

The top two ranked catchers in high school baseball are on the East roster. Sapp is an outstanding defensive catcher with a strong arm. His best tool is his bat which is one of the most powerful in the country. Georgia's Torre Langley is unquestionably the top defensive receiver in high school baseball. He is both very quick and possesses one of the strongest arms in the country. Langley can hit as well. The West catchers include power hitting, strong armed Conger and Robbie Alcombrack both from California.

The number of high profile athletes and players in this year's Aflac are astounding. Several are highest national level football prospects. Here are the rosters.

East Roster
Name
                      Pos.          Ht/Wt       High School, Home Town, St
Dellin Betances         RHP         6-9/205      Grand Street HS, New York, NY
Jeremy Jeffress         RHP         6-1/180      Haifax County, South Boston, VA
Kasey Kiker              LHP         5-11/180     Russell County, Phenix, AL
Matt Latos                RHP         6-6/200      Coconut Creek, Margate, FL
Cory Rasmus            RHP         6-0/198      Russell County, Phenix, AL
Gerald Sullivan          RHP         6-4/200      Mt Olive, Budd Lake, NJ
Chris Walden            RHP         6-3/185      Bellefontaine, Bellfontaine, OH C
olton Willems            RHP        6-4/185       John Carroll, Fort Pierce, FL
Torre Langley            C             5-10/180     Alexander, Winston, GA
Max Sapp                 C             6-2/210      Bishop Moore, Windemere, FL
Andrew Clark            1B           6-2/195       New Palastine, New Palastine, IN
Brent Brewer             INF          6-2/190       Sandy Creek, Fairburn, GA
Ryan Jackson           INF          6-2/170       Gulliver Prep, Miami Springs, FL
Chris Marrero            INF          6-3/195       Pace, Miami, FL
Billy Rowell               INF          6-4/195       Bishop Eustace Prep, Sewell, NJ
David Christensen      OF          6-3/200       Stoneman Douglas, Parkland, FL
Cedric Hunter            OF          6-0/175        King HS, Decatur, GA
Cody Johnson           OF          6-4/195        Mosley, Panama City, FL
Derrick Robinson       OF          5-11/170      PK Yonge, Archer, FL

West Roster
Name
                     Pos.          Ht/Wt        High School, Home Town, St
Brett Anderson         LHP         6-4/210       Stillwater, Stillwater, OK
Gavin Brooks           LHP         6-3/190        Rancho Buena Vista, Vista, CA
Kyle Drabek             RHP        6-0/180       The Woodlands, The Woodlands, TX
Taylor Hammack      LHP         6-2/210       Angleton, Angleton, TX
Ryan Jenkins           RHP        6-5/205       Cy Falls, Houston, TX
Aaron Miller              LHP        6-3/200       Channelview, Channelview, TX
Chad Robinson         RHP        6-4/190       Silverado, Las Vegas, NV
Chris Tillman            RHP        6-5/190       Fountain Valley, Fountain Valley, CA
Jordan Walden         RHP        6-5/200       Mansfield, Mansfield, TX
Robbie Alcombrack   C            6-1/200       Bear Valley, Grass Valley, CA
Hank Conger            C/3B       6-0/210       Huntington Beach, Huntington Beach, CA
Chris Parmelee         1B          6-1/195       Chino Hills, Chino Hills, CA
Ryan Adams            INF         6-0/180        Jesuit, Mandeville, LA
Nathan Bridges        INF          6-2/180       Villa Park, Yorba Linda, CA
Grant Green             INF         6-3/175       Canyon, Anaheim, CA
Jared Mitchell           OF         6-0/195       Westgate, New Iberia, LA
Jeff Rapoport            OF         5-11/175      Westlake, Westlake, CA
Drew Rundle            OF          6-3/175       Bend HS, Bend, OR
Devin Shephard        OF          6-4/220      Wren HS, Oxnard, CA

PG Showcase at the Aflac Classic

Each year, as the Aflac Classic approaches we come to realize there are some outstanding players and pitchers who deserve to be Aflac players, but were not selected. Some of these players could be first round picks in next year's draft. So this year's Perfect Game rosters are nearly as impressive as the Aflac rosters. Maybe the #1 prospect in America by next June will be on the PG Showcase rosters. The pitchers included on these rosters, as a group might be better than last year's Aflac pitching.

Watchout for Jason Stoffel California RHP who can really pitch and was up to 93 mph at the PG National. Nathan Karns is another highest level RHP from Texas. He was 92 at the PG National, but has been throwing in the mid 90s lately. Every pitcher in the PG Showcase has and is capable of throwing 90 mph or better. Some of the very best players in high school baseball will be on the field. Jonathan Merritt is not big, but he has big tools and can really use them. Jet Butler, Gabby Saade, and others are among the best middle infielders in the nation. And there is going to be some big surprises. Every player in both events next week is a high level Division I or draft prospect. Scouts and recruiters will have a field day.

When it's all said and done there is going to be some scouts mentioning why was this guy not in the Aflac game. Afterall, that's what happened last year and this years group is much stronger. Last year, players like Pedro Alvarez, Brandon Erbe, Matthew Olson, David Adams, Kieron Pope and many other star caliber players were in the PG Showcase. You might say, it came down to a "coin flip" as to why some are Aflac players and others are in the PG Showcase. It's good that the draft isn't next week.

The Perfect Game Showcase rosters will be finalized and posted by the end of the week.