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FSU baseball commit highlights: 2/17-2/24

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‘Nole commits make noise all over the southeast in week one of the high school baseball season

@treytonrank instagram

With an unexpected day off due to rain in Jacksonville, let’s take a look at how some of FSU’s commits fared this past week as the high school baseball season kicked off.

2020:

Anthony Shaver has real potential to be a 5-tool player at Florida State. The 8th-ranked OF in the state has thrown 92 MPH from the outfield and ran a 6.45 second sixty-yard dash. Last Friday, the Clermont-native showed off his pop with two home runs and two epic bat flips.

Gavin Smith was a breakout arm on the travel ball scene this past summer. Smith has been up to 90 MPH with the fastball, which he pairs with a sharp slider. He’s currently rated the 61st RHP in Florida. Smith worked three innings of one-run ball against Venice to start his 2020.

FSU’s highest-rated commit Carson Montgomery showed why he’s one of the top prep arms for the 2020 MLB draft. Montgomery is rated the #1 RHP in FL and the 15th best player in the nation.

Andrew Armstrong doesn’t have the flashiest stuff, but he’s a polished and crafty pitcher that knows how to get outs. The lanky lefty has been up to 88 MPH on the mound, but gets the job done with a filthy curveball and unique delivery. Armstrong is currently rated the #3 LHP in Georgia. He has the arsenal to be an immediate impact arm out of the bullpen as a freshman.

Vince Smith is another guy that could make an immediate impact next season. This kid just hits everywhere he goes, whether it’s high school or travel ball. Through three games and 11 appearances, the middle infielder has made just three outs. He’s started his season 5-8 at the plate, including a clutch performance last Friday in a battle of reigning state champs. The Clearwater-native is rated the 10th shortstop in Florida.

2021:

The Seminoles’ most recent commit, Jaime Ferrer, had himself a good weekend, including a 3-3 game on Friday. The catcher posted two doubles on the day, including the one below. In three games, Ferrer went 4-8 with three runs.

Treyton Rank had himself quite the opening week. The Georgia-native posted five scoreless innings on the hill and went 4-7 at the dish in two games, including the walk-off single below. Rank is rated the #5 RHP in Georgia, but will come in as a two-way player he told me, “I would love to hit and come off the bump as long as possible. The coaches at FSU would like me to try and do both.”

Sadly, Cade Bush has to wear orange and blue for high school ball, but he’ll rep the garnet and gold in college. Hopefully more bombs and bat flips like the one below will follow for Bush when he puts the Seminole uniform on. The Florida-native is rated the #3 first baseman in the state.

2022:

Jordan Taylor was FSU’s first commit of the 2022 class, and he’s showing why Meat got on his recruitment so early. Taylor is currently rated the 59th overall player in the 2022 class and has shown the potential of a 5-tool player. The Jacksonville-native is another potential two-way player for the Seminoles, as he’s touched 88 MPH on the hill. Watch him drop a nuke below (I could watch this swing and listen to the crack of the bat for hours).

Brett Barfield is a highly projectable lefty arm with lots of room to grow. The LHP is currently rated the #4 LHP in Georgia and will only gets better as he adds weight to his lanky frame.

Davion Hickson may have the highest ceiling of the current 2022 commits on the mound. The RHP has started his year with 7 innings of one-run ball, while striking out 10 and giving up just three hits. The 16 year old already stands 6’4 and touches 90 MPH on the mound. The sky is the limit for Hickson.

Ben Barrett is another commit with real two-way potential. The Orlando-native is currently ranked the #7 third baseman in the state and has been up to 86 MPH on the hill. The 15-year old is an imposing figure in the box, standing 6’3 and 175 pounds. If he can add on some weight, he’ll be a true power threat in the box.

2023:

Justin Best was the Seminoles’ first 2023 commit after showing out at one of Mike Martin Jr.’s prospect camps. Best is rated the #1 player in the North Carolina and the 31st best player in the nation for 2023. The lefty hitter has a large and athletic frame at the plate. With 3 and a half years to put on muscle, Best could put balls over the RF fence at Dick Howser with ease if he reaches campus.

Luke Dotson had himself a fine start to his high school career. The lefty tossed a no-hitter in five innings with three strikeouts. The freshman already stands 6’4 on the hill and has plenty of room to grow off a 170-pound frame. The Lake City-native is rated the fourth best LHP in the state.

Riley Jackson is FSU’s highest rated recruit for the 2023 class and has all the tools to be a star down the road. Jackson is rated the #1 catcher in Florida and the 17th best player in the nation. The catcher has started his freshman season 5-9 with four runs in three games.