My story for MLBcom on evaluating prospects
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My story for MLBcom on evaluating prospects

MLB and USA Baseball team up to form Prospect Development Pipeline series

CARY, N.C -- The year-round schedule at the USA Baseball National Training Complex is filled with dates featuring prospects striving to develop skills worthy of catching the eye of Major League Baseball scouts. The suburban Raleigh-Durham facility hosts events ranging from age-group national team showcases, Division I college games and the NCAA Division II World Series, which has produced its share of Draft pick. ... 

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But few events draw as many big league scouts as the event that stopped in Cary for a game Wednesday matching the USA Collegiate National Team and the Coastal Plains League Select Team

The Collegiate team won 3-2 over CPL Select, which includes players from a wood-bat summer league located in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Georgia.

In addition to the game, there was an evaluation period earlier in the day conducted by the Prospect Development Pipeline. Players were tested on infield, outfield, batting and pitching drills in a combine setting.

The PDP is a collaborative effort between MLB and USA Baseball to establish a player identification and pathway for amateur baseball. 

The Collegiate National Team remains in Cary through Sunday, facing Chinese Taipei in an International Friendly Series. Here are some standout names from the Wednesday's workouts and game:

Tyler Adams, IF, CPL, Lincoln Memorial

The power hitter is from Lincoln Memorial -- the 1,995-student university in Harrogate, Tenn., not the monument to our 16th president. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound NCAA Division II All-American shortstop arrived in Cary with little name recognition, but he turned heads. In his only at-bat as a pinch-hitter, he launched a 400-foot, two-run homer just left of dead center to provide CPL with a 2-0 lead in the fifth inning. Did he catch anyone's interest in a talent-laden setting?

"Absolutely," said one scout. "He hit a shot and did it in front of a lot of people against some big-time competition. That bodes well for him."

For CPL Select, Adams was listed as a utility player and designated hitter. Last spring he connected on 12 home runs, 23 doubles and 49 RBIs in 56 games. He was 14-of-14 stealing bases.

Bryson Stott, SS, USA, UNLV

Stott is considered a plus defender who can hit gap to gap while batting left-handed and throwing right. Scouts sensed some nervousness while Scott was performing at the USA facility during workouts, but he apparently relaxed by game time. He started at shortstop and batted sixth, going 2-of-3 with an RBI single and a run scored. Last spring, as a UNLV sophomore, the 6-foot-3, 195-pounder batted .365.

Spencer Torkelson, 1B, USA, Arizona State

Torkelson continues to demonstrate bat control and power in the summer after his strong freshman season with the Sun Devils. He started at first base and batted fifth, finishing 1-of-3 with an RBI double. Last spring he earned Freshman National Player of the Year and second-team All-American honors. He batted .320 with 25 home runs and a team-leading 53 RBIs

Andres Perez, C, CPL, North Georgia

Perez is also from an NCAA Division II school, but he arrived with plenty of surname recognition. His father, Eddie, played 11 MLB seasons as a catcher with Atlanta, Cleveland and Milwaukee. During workouts Perez, who is built like a defensive end as a 6-foot-7, 240-pounder, satisfied scouts with his physicality and his ability to catch and throw behind the plate. He entered the game as a substitute and was 0-of-1.

Myles Christian, OF, CPL, Middle Tennessee State

Scouts like how the college freshman is growing into his body while now measuring 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds. He was thinner when drafted in the 18th round by Seattle in 2017 out of high school. Christian started for CPL in left field and batted second, but he was 0-of-2. Last spring he hit .259 with nine stolen bases while starting 48 of the team's 55 games.

Braden Shewmake, SS, USA, Texas A&M

Shewmake impresses scouts with his ability to handle the bat and his hand-eye coordination in the field. He batted second for USA as the designated hitter and was 0-of-2 with two walks and a run scored. He played shortstop for Texas A&M last spring. The 6-foot-4, 190-pounder has added 15 pounds since high school, but improved strength is still needed. In 60 starts for the Aggies, he batted .325 with five home runs and 45 RBIs to help the team advance to the NCAA Regional.

Tom Shanahan is a contributor to

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Tom Shanahan

Tom Shanahan

Tom Shanahan is an award-winning sportswriter and the author of "Raye of Light". Tom spent the bulk of his career in San DIego writing for the San Diego Union-Tribune, Voice of San Diego, the San Diego Hall of Champions and He contributes to the Detroit Free Press, Raleigh News & Observer,, and the National Football Foundation's Football Matters. He won multiple first-place awards from the San Diego Press Club and first place from the Copley News Service Ring of Truth Awards. The National Football Foundation/San Diego Chapter presented him its Distinguished American Award in 2003. USA Track and Field’s San Diego Chapter presented its President’s Award in 2000.

Raye of Light: Jimmy Raye, Duffy Daugherty, the integration of college football and the 1965-66 Michigan State Spartans. It explains Duffy Daugherty's pioneering role and debunks myths that steered recognition away from him to Bear Bryant.

By Tom Shanahan; Foreword by Tony Dungy; August Publications

David Maraniss, Pulitzer Prize winner and biographer: "History writes people out of the story. It's our job to write them back in."