Buzzworthy Matchups: Week 11Premium
From week to week, there are marquee matchups between powerhouse programs on the college baseball scene that catch the eye. These matchups have potentially significant ramifications when it comes to the standings and long term postseason hopes. But, when you look at the college game through the eyes of a scout, and look at some of the matchups within a series, some very different showdowns become all the more intriguing.
Each week here at D1Baseball.com, we will provide a ranking of the best and most intriguing matchups between prospects that college baseball has to offer. Some of these matchups will be specific in nature (two top pitching prospects squaring off) and others will be between two exceptionally talented rosters. Essentially, the rankings are considered on the basis of how significant the matchup is looking at it through a scouting and draft lens. The goal is to shine a light on some lesser known quantities that deserve attention from the scouting world, and to highlight very specific aspects of some of the already highly talked about, marquee series from around the nation. Although professional scouts are currently focused on 2017, we also consider the 2018 and 2019 draft classes for the purposes of this list.
(This is not a ranking that reflects the overall rankings of teams in our weekly top 25. It’s a ranking of specific matchups that are particularly intriguing to scouting the community.)
1. Clemson @ North Carolina – Beer vs. Bukauskas
High octane matchups don’t come much bigger than this one. UNC ace righthander J.B. Bukauskas is looking more and more like a top five overall draft pick this June, as he continues to enjoy a dominant spring. While Clemson sophomore Seth Beer has not quite erupted like some have expected, he’s still among the most feared hitters in the country and among the national leader in home runs. He also remains a serious candidate for the top pick in 2018. Bukauskas has swing and miss stuff that can shut down both righty and lefty batters, and just how he attacks the fearsome Beer will be intriguing to watch. Although he’s well known for his exploding 93-97 mph fastball, the difference maker for Bukauskas will continue to be his plus, upper 80s slider. It’s arguably the best slider in the country, and a pitch he’ll have no issue burying down and in on a lefty like Beer, or sneaking it through the backdoor on the outside corner. He has advanced command of it to both sides of the plate.
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