Jason Groome Named To Golden Spikes Watch List



By Nathan Rode
National Supervisor

Jason GroomeUSA Baseball announced Tuesday the preseason watch list for the 2016 Golden Spikes Award, a distinction given to the top amateur baseball player in the country since 1978. It is sponsored by Major League Baseball in partnership with the Rod Dedeaux Foundation and is presented to the athlete that not only shows remarkable on-field ability, but also earns high marks for sportsmanship. On the preseason list is LHP Jason Groome (Barnegat HS, NJ), currently the No. 1 prospect on the PBR Draft 100 and a strong candidate to be the first overall selection at the draft in June.

Groome pitched at IMG Academy, FL, as a junior, but returned to his hometown before his senior year. He dazzled on the showcase circuit last summer, throwing his fastball in the mid-90s while adding in a nasty breaking ball and showing feel for a changeup. Groome is committed to Vanderbilt.

Also on the preseason list is RHP Riley Pint (St. Thomas Aquinas HS, KS). Pint is the No. 2 high school prospect in the country and also in consideration for the top selection of the draft. He’s extremely athletic and has a lightning-quick arm that produces a top-of-the-scale fastball. A Louisiana State recruit, he hit 99 mph twice in the Under Armour Game in August and made noise in a recent workout, hitting triple digits with three consecutive pitches. He also has a good breaking ball and changeup.

The Golden Spikes Award generally goes to a Division I player. Bryce Harper (2010, JC of Southern Nevada) and Alex Fernandez (1990, Miami Dade CC) are the only two to win it that weren’t D-I. Three high school players have been named as finalists in the history of the award—Alex Rodriguez (1993, Westminster Christian HS, FL), Ken Griffey Jr. (1987, Moeller HS, OH) and Brent Friehauf (1982, Bowie HS, MD).

A midseason watch list will be released on April 20 and semifinalists will be announced on June 13. Finalists will be named on June 25 and the winner will be named Thursday, June 30, at a presentation in Los Angeles.

The entire preseason list is as follows:

First Name

Pos.

Year

School

Will Albertson

C

Sr.

Catawba (D-II)

Nick Banks

OF

Jr.

Texas A&M

Carmen Benedetti

UT

Jr.

Michigan

Keivan Berges

RHP/OF

Jr.

Keiser (NAIA)

Ryan Boldt

OF

Jr.

Nebraska

Bryson Brigman

IF

So.

San Diego

Zack Collins

C

Jr.

Miami

Will Craig

RHP/IF

Jr.

Wake Forest

Bobby Dalbec

IF

Jr.

Arizona

Sam Dexter

IF

Sr.

Southern Maine (D-III)

Kyle Funkhouser

RHP

Sr.

Louisville

Luke Gillingham

LHP

Sr.

Navy

Reese Gregory

RHP/IF

Sr.

St. Cloud State (D-II)

Jason Groome

LHP

HS

Barnegat HS, NJ

Alec Hansen

RHP

Jr.

Oklahoma

K.J. Harrison

C/IF

So.

Oregon State

Kevin Hill

RHP

Jr.

South Alabama

Keston Hiura

UT

So.

UC Irvine

Tanner Houck

RHP

So.

Missouri

Ryan Howard

IF

Jr.

Missouri

Zach Jackson

RHP

Jr.

Arkansas

Daulton Jefferies

RHP

Jr.

California

Kel Johnson

OF

So.

Georgia Tech

Connor Jones

RHP

Jr.

Virginia

Anthony Kay

LHP

Jr.

Connecticut

Matt Krook

LHP

So.

Oregon 

Alex Lange

RHP

So.

Louisiana State

Andrew Lantrip

RHP

Jr.

Houston

Eric Lauer

LHP

Jr.

Kent State

Kyle Lewis

OF

Jr.

Mercer

Brendan McKay

LHP/IF

So.

Louisville

Tyson Miller

RHP

Jr.

California Baptist (D-II)

Sheldon Neuse

RHP/IF

Jr.

Oklahoma

Chris Okey

C

Jr.

Clemson

Corbin Olmstead

RHP/IF

Jr.

North Florida 

Ryan Olson

RHP

Jr.

Cal Poly Pomona (D-II)

Riley Pint

RHP

HS

St. Thomas Aquinas HS, KS

A.J. Puk

LHP

Jr.

Florida

Cal Quantrill

RHP

Jr.

Stanford

Corey Ray

OF

Jr.

Louisville

Buddy Reed

OF

Jr.

Florida

Bryan Reynolds

OF

Jr.

Vanderbilt

J.J. Schwarz

C

So.

Florida

Nick Senzel

IF

Jr.

Tennessee

Mike Shawaryn

RHP

Jr.

Maryland

Matt Thaiss

C

Jr.

Virginia

Mitchell Traver

RHP

Jr.

Texas Christian

Donnie Walton

IF

Sr.

Oklahoma State

Colby Woodmansee

IF

Jr.

Arizona State

Kyle Wright

RHP/IF

So.

Vanderbilt

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