Florida State baseball opened the fall ball with a 14-inning scrimmage against Jacksonville Dolphins Today. The Seminoles ran an 11-man lineup, consisting of seven newcomers. Although it was not the sharpest day for FSU’s throws, the new faces in the line-up drove FSU to a 14-8 victory. Here are our notes and observations from the scrimmage:
- Parker Messick got the start of Noles in front of 15+ MLB scouts. Southpaw worked two rounds. Messick got into an early jam, but in typical Messick style he got out of it easily. Red-shirt sophomore started the day with a strikeout. A trip and a single put two on with one out. After a turn and miss, Messick induced a helicopter in the middle. Freshman Treyton Rank turned and Jordan Carrion combined to turn a 4-6-3 double that ended in a round. In his second round of work, Messick worked around a single on a point-free second. He threw 25 lanes (68% for strikes) and struck out two shots over two goalless. His fastball has been a cross up all fall, sitting more 90-92 with some 93s. He has also adjusted the slider to be a current slider, about three km / h from last year. It has now later bitten and will cause more swing-and-miss. His prey, which at times looks like a screw, is still his best course.
- FSU’s offense will be completely different this year, filled with new faces and new skills. The new offense was shown quickly at the bottom of the first. The first three hits in the lineup were the Seminoles’ three transition bats: UF transfer Jordan Carrion, Tennessee Tech transfer Brett Roberts and UM transfer Alex Toral. Carrion headed off with a line drive easily up the middle. Roberts introduced himself to FSU fans with a no doubt blast to the left field on the first pitch he saw. That’s what Roberts is going to bring to the lineup, aggression and a lot of talent. He only hit five homers last season, but there is potential for 10+ homers in his bat.
Toral came back in the count 0-2, but tore a line-drive through the shift for a single. After a Logan Lacey single and a fieldman’s choice, rookie James Tibbs pulled a baseload walk to 3-0 after one.
- Bryce Hubbart struggled with the fastball command and sat down early in a hole. Southpaw went their first two hits. A couple of fluttering hits, a bloop single and a helicopter down the third baseline, covered two races. But Hubbart jumped back and showed off his things to limit the damage. He stopped a left-handed hitter for a pop-out, before picking up a backwards K. Hubbart’s thing is also a cross this year, as he has touched 95 MPH and set 92-94 MPH today. He has also added a new wipeout slider to connect to his curveball. The new slider allows him to use the curveball as a pitch for strikes and the slider for swing-and-miss.
- FSU set up another crooked number in the third round. Freshman Jaime Ferrer released an infield single to start the round. Ferrer, despite being a catcher, has wheels on the trails. Carrion followed with a ride. Roberts took a line drive into the box on the left center in the middle, but was robbed of an extra hit on the extra base. Toral hit the shift for the second straight AB when he knocked in Ferrer with an opposite field single. Colton Vincent grabbed a five-lap inning as he laced a two-run single into the left field. Vincent really struggled last fall, but has put together consistent quality stock and has proven to be a reliable defender behind the plate.
- Dylan Simmons is now a pitcher-only for ‘Noles, and he has really improved on the mound. So far this fall, he has been one of FSU’s most dominant pitchers. He has done it with a combination glass combination, similar to the one in Tyler Ahearn’s arsenal last season. But Simmons is a little more polished than Ahearn. Simmons allowed two men at the base, but stranded them both. He hit a batter using the slider to get an uncomfortable turn from a left-handed hit. The sink and the slider tunnel are well spaced apart and make him a difficult task for any hitter. With the extra time spent on the mound, I expect Simmons to be one of FSU’s best relievers in 2022.
- Roberts showed off his athletics to start the fifth round. The right-handed hitman managed to knock out an infield single on a helicopter for a short stop. Toral went to put on two runners. The left-handed slugger reached the base in each of his first three record appearances. Reese Albert covered his second race of the match with a sacrificial plane to the left field. After falling behind 0-2, Albert was able to strike back for eight kinds of quality stock.
- Jonah Scolaro worked the Seminoles first 1-2-3 for the day in the sixth. He followed up with a 1-2-3 seventh. He struck out two and threw 15 lanes in his first inning. The next round he knocked out two more and withdrew on 10 courses. Scolaro, who was a Cape Cod League All-Star this summer, has added a change to his arsenal that has increased his game. Southpaw had always been an FB-CB-SL pitcher. He relied on the different types of breaks on his wrestling balls to keep the hitters out of balance. With the fourth lane added, a change that gives right-handed hitter fits, he keeps hitter guessing at a higher speed. Two of his four Ks came against RHHs with the change.
- AJ Shaver has all the tools to be a superstar at the college level. Last season, he only got one batsman when he needed time to fine-tune his tools. This autumn, he will start to show that he is putting the tools together. Shaver headed from the bottom of the sixth with a deep fly ball to the largest part of the park. It fell right next to the midfield wall for a double. If the outfielder puts the tools together, plus raw power and athleticism, it will be a game changer for Noles.
- Ferrer led the seventh with a walk to reach the base for the third time on first-year first three record appearances. Two lanes later, there was another home run from a transfer surcharge in the lineup. Carrion took advantage of a 1-0 pitch over the plate and drove it into the FSU bullpen for a two-run homer. The shortstop was brought to Florida State for the glove, and he has proven to be an elite player this fall, but he also shows that he can be a consistent producer on the plate. He has stacked quality bats on top of each other throughout the fall. No matter where he hits in the order, he will consistently be at the base.
- Wyatt Crowell will be in the mix for the tournament this weekend, and he showed why in his first round at work. Southpaw has an electric arm. He has been up to 96 km / h in the autumn and loves to work under hitters’ hands with the fastball. Crowell also has a slider in the low 80s. His change is a development that can take him to the next level. He worked around a two-out double for a scoreless eighth. The first strike came on a 94 MPH FB under a right-handed hitter. The next came on a slider for a left-handed hitter in the box of the other battery. His stuff is as unbeatable as any other on the staff. He also showed his negative sides in his second round of work. Crowell allowed two runs when he gave up three free passes in the ninth.
- Jackson Baumeister will also be in the mix for a weekend getaway. He relieved Crowell with the bases loaded and one out. The beginner struck out two straight strokes with high fixed balls to penetrate the bases loaded. Baumeister sat 93-95 MPH with the fastball. The fastball also plays due to its large growth and extension down the hill. He also dropped in a basket ball in the upper 70’s. He has the ability to throw the wrestling ball for strike whenever he wants. The right-handed pitcher allowed a home run on the tenth, but jumped back for three more strikeouts. He picked up six swings and missed 31 lanes.
- Roberts showed his aggression and fast bat again in the tenth round. The Tennessee Tech transfer towed the first lane of the round to the left field for a leading double. Toral followed with a walk to reach for the fifth time on as many battle flags. Two more rides covered Roberts. The fresh Tibbs added to the race total with a deep sacrificial fly to the right field. Tibb’s left – handed shot will fit well at Dick Howser Stadium. He may be an effects player one day.
- Jackson Nezuh has been FSU’s best pitcher this fall, and he was Seminole’s best pitcher today. Nezuh worked a 1-2-3 12th inning with two strikeouts. The right-handed jug is a brand new jug this autumn. He now throws in the lows until the mid-90s with a new brand that has been unprotected. The splitter plays perfectly with the fastball, which Nezuh likes to use up in the zone. Nine of his 12 lanes went on strike. In the summer he went only three strokes over 38 laps, while hitting 62. If he continues the work he has put in the last five months, he has a very good chance of slipping into the weekend rotation.
- Conner Whittaker is going to eat up many innings for the Seminoles as a beginner. Whittaker reminds me of Conor Grady. He is a three-pitcher with all three pitches for strike. He showed all three of these courses today in a 1-2-3 round with two strikeouts. Whittaker has a low ’90s sinker that produces many ground balls. His wrestling ball is a curve ball with good depth that he can use to the right and left. The right-handed pitcher also has a plus shift that creates swing-and-miss from left-handed hitters. He only needed 10 lanes (eight for strike) to complete a pointless round.
- Ferrer showed off the athleticism and arm strength to help Whittaker chop a 1-2-3 run. At Whittaker’s first strikeout, a curveball bounced off Ferrer. He quickly got to the ball and shot a ball down to others to delete a leading single. Carrion used a quick tag to get out.