Prep Baseball Report

Area Code Games: Thursday Notebook

By Nathan Rode
National Supervisor

LONG BEACH, CA—The regular portion of the 2017 Area Code Games concluded Thursday with five games. While most teams recycled arms from earlier in the week, the Brewers (Southern California) had a fresh batch of arms for it’s back-to-back games to close out the event. LHP Erik Tolman (El Toro HS, CA), who started the Brewers’ first game, was one of the best arms on the day. The only disappointing part about his outing was that it was only two innings. His fastball was 89-92 mph, which he spotted up well, and he had a wipeout slider at 76-79. It had sharp, 3/4 break and he threw it for strikes while also making hitters chase it out of the zone. He struck out four in two innings while giving up two runs on three hits, but the runs were fluky. He started the game with a strikeout on his slider and then the second batter reached on what should have been a flyout to left field, but the outfielders lost the ball in the sun. That ball was hit by 3B/RHP Luke Mann (St. John Vianney HS, MO). Mann scored on a single by OF Ryder Green (Knoxville Christian School, TN), who scored himself on a groundout to shortstop. He had advanced to second on the throw home and then was stealing when OF Zaid Walker (Homewood-Flossmoor HS, IL) grounded to short. Green didn’t stop, rounded third and scored when the first baseman couldn’t get the ball home fast enough. That was the extent of the damage against Tolman. It’s a big jump from where Tolman was just four months ago. At The Boras Classic South in April, he was 83-85, though he did have a sharp slider then and exhibited command of his arsenal. The video includes his two strikeouts in the first inning.

Here are some more highlights from Thursday’s action…

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