Tallahassee, FL - Florida State baseball coach Mike Martin expects to welcome 15 outstanding new players in the fall of 2011 as the legendary Hall of Fame coach announced another outstanding recruiting class. The highly rated class consists of seven pitchers (five left handed pitchers), three outfielders, four infielders and a catcher as the Seminoles continued the annual process of reloading their roster which consists of many of the top collegiate players in the nation each season.
Martin, who has led Florida State to 31 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, is the third winningest coach in the history of college baseball with 1,627 all-time victories. His winning percentage of nearly 75 percent for his entire 31 year career as the Seminoles’ head coach is the best in college baseball and he has led the Seminoles to five ACC championships. Martin guided the Seminoles to the 2010 College World Series and to the fifth ACC championship in school history.
Florida State’s 2011 recruiting class features 11 players from the state of Florida and two from Georgia – long considered to be two of the top producing states of top baseball talent in the entire nation. The Seminoles and recruiting coordinator Jamey Shouppe also reached into the very fertile Midwest region of the country to sign top recruits from the states of Missouri and Illinois.
“Our entire staff did an outstanding job of evaluating and targeting the types of players we will need to add to our roster for next season,” said Martin. “Jamey Shouppe and Mike, Jr., knew how important this class is going to be for the future of our program and they went out and flat got the job done. This class is heavy on pitching – especially left handed pitching – that we felt was necessary to add to our roster. The players we will welcome into our program will fit in nicely and help us win many ballgames during their careers. Recruiting is so important in every sport and we are elated with the prospects who will become the next crop of outstanding student-athletes and productive Seminole baseball players.”
Here is a look at the 2011 Florida State baseball recruiting class with comments from recruiting coordinator Jamey Shouppe
Port St. Lucie, Fla./Lincoln Park Academy
INF, 5-11, 170
Shouppes’ Comments: “Gio is an outstanding kid first of all and a very good student. He’s a lot like our current second baseman Devin Travis; one of those players who teammates gravitate to. He is a great baseball player who is going to be a very good college player. Gio plays for the All-American Prospects team in the summer for head coach Dave Parra. Parra swears he’ll play in the major leagues.”
Pensacola Catholic H.S. / Pensacola, Fl.
LHP, 5-11, 155
Shouppes’ Comments: “Cody is a pitcher who tops out at 86 mph who throws from across his body from a low three-quarter arm slot. He’s pitching motion is very deceptive and he makes it very difficult for hitters to square up on the ball. He throws a good change up and has a very good sweeping slider and is a player who will definitely get a look by the coaching staff at the very beginning of his career. He will have an opportunity to come in as a situational left hander who will be able to come in and get left hander hitters out. He’s not very big in stature but really knows how to pitch and really aggressive for a player so small in stature. He is listed at 5’11 155 and he may not be that big but he is going to be good. His motion is very similar to (former Seminole All-American) Randy Choate.”
Ronald Regan H.S./Miami, Fla.
Catcher, 6-1 205 (Bats Right/Throws Right)
Shouppes’ Comments: “Mario is a big kid who swings the bat really well. He’s a right handed hitter who is one of those guys who’s best baseball is certainly in front him. He’s a little raw and not quite where he’s going to be but he certainly has a very high ceiling. He’s a 6’1 205 pound catcher and Perfect Game has him ranked among the 250 top collegiate prospects in the nation. Mario is going to be a pretty good player for us and a pretty good catcher.”
Clay H.S./Jacksonville, Fla.
LHP, 6-2, 185,
Shouppes’ Comments: “Kyle is a skinny left handed pitcher who tops out at about 87-88 miles per hour. He really knows how to pitch and as he gets stronger his velocity is going to increase. In my opinion, Kyle is going to grow into one of our top pitchers and one of the better pitchers in college baseball. His future is definitely bright; he is another one of those guys that has a tremendously high ceiling. Kyle is a guy we saw this summer pitching and really not a whole lot of people knew a whole lot about him. He made a name for himself this year and is a guy that we are extremely excited about.”
Archbishop McCarthy H.S. / Miami, Fl.
3B/RHP, 6-1, 175 (Bats Left/Throws Right)
Shouppes’ Comments: “Jose is an outstanding two-way player who we feel has a chance to be a high draft pick in next summer’s MLD Draft. He is a great competitor who excels as a third baseman and as a right handed pitcher. He throws the ball very well and is a left handed hitter with a little bit pop in his bat. He may be the best position player in this class. Jose is ranked among the top 175 players in the nation by Perfect Game.
Branson H.S./Branson, Mo.
RHP, 6-1, 185
Shouppes’ Comments: “Mike is a guy who has topped out at 88 miles per hour. He has a loose arm, a very good arm slot and a low three quarter arm slot and an interesting slider. He had some pretty good numbers in high school. I think he’s going to be a good pitcher at Florida State.”
Barton H.S./Barton, Fla.
OF, 6-2, 180 (Bats Left/Throws Left)
Shouppes’ Comments: “Josh is another of our recruits who’s best baseball is certainly in front of him. He is a big left handed hitter with a big glove who is only going to get better in our system once he gets to Florida State. Josh had a very good summer and we feel like we found a gem of a left-handed hitter when we scouted and evaluated his talent.”
Northview H.S./John’s Creek, Ga.
Infielder, 5-10, 170 (Bats Left/Throws Right)
Shouppes’ Comments: “John is a player that we are very excited about. He has so much potential and is going to be a very good player in the future. John is a multi talented infielder who will help us at a number of positions including second base and third base.”
Breese Central H.S./New Baden, Ill.
LHP, 6-5, 180
Shouppes’ Comments: “Bryant is a very tall lefthander pitcher – the kind of pitcher we have been looking to get into a Seminole uniform for a long time. His fastball tops out at 90 miles per hour and he throws a cut fastball at about 85 miles per hour. He has also worked hard on developing an outstanding change-up. Like the other left-handed pitchers in our class he is quickly going to develop into a good pitcher in the near future and become an outstanding pitcher in our rotation.”
Osceloa H.S./St. Petersburg, Fla.
OF/LHP, 5-9, 160 (Bats Left/Throws Left)
Shouppes’ Comments: “Taylor is a guy we are very excited about because of his tremendous will to compete and his amazing will to win. He is a little guy and no one really wanted to give him a chance. He will do anything he needs to do to win a baseball game. Taylor will come to Florida State and compete for playing time in the outfield and who has a chance to become a closer for us. He is a tremendous two-way player who is a guy we want in our line-up.
Maris H.S./Alpharetta, Ga.
LHP, 6-5, 185
Shouppes’ Comments: “Brandon is a player who should be able to get his fastball up at or above 90 miles per hour and we are excited about that. He has a good frame for a pitcher, rally knows to pitch and most importantly knows how to win. Brandon is potentially a very high draft selection next summer. His father is former major league pitcher Charlie Leibrandt.”
North Florida Christian/Tallahassee, Fla.
1B/LHP, 6-1, 200
Shouppes’ Comments: “John is a local player who we have had on our radar for quite some time now and are glad that he is finally a Seminole. He is an outstanding two-way player who will help is as both a lefthanded pitcher and as a first baseman. As good as he is on the mound and as strong as he is on defense at firstbase we also like his ability to consistently hit the ball and hit for average. John is going to help our ball club in many different ways during his career. His is ranked as one of the top 250 prep prospects in the nation in this recruiting class.”
Leon H.S./Tallahassee, Fla.
LHP, 6-1, 200
Shouppes’ Comments: “Jordan is one of the local players we signed who we have had our eyes on for much of his high school career. He is a tremendous young man and a good student who will do well academically at Florida State. He throws up around 90 miles per hour and we expect him to increase his velocity once we get him into our strength and conditioning program. Jordan is going a very good pitcher during his career at Florida State.”
Port St. Joe H.S./Port St. Joe, Fla.
OF/INF, 5-9, 165 (Bats: Switch/Throws Right)
Shouppes’ Comments: “Roman is without a doubt the best athlete in our recruiting class and we are excited about what he can do on a baseball field. He is extremely fast and can play just about every position in both the infield and the outfield. We are looking forward to utilizing his talents – his bat, his glove and his speed – to help is add many different dynamics to how we approach different situations.”
Deland H.S./Deland, Fla.
RHP, 6-2, 170
Shouppes’ Comments: Luke is a player we targeted to add to our pitching staff within this recruiting class. He throws better than 90 miles per hour and is still developing as a pitcher. Luke is rated among the top 100 players in this recruiting class and he has the ability to join our rotation right away.”