Baseball

BSB: Meet the Florida Gators 2020 Recruiting Class

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It was National Signing Day for baseball recruits last Wednesday as most high schools prospects signed their National Letter of Intent. The Florida Gators have already signed the majority of their class with a few more commits yet to sign.

The Florida Gators 2020 baseball recruiting class ranks fifth in the country on Perfect Game. The Gators have seventeen commits in their class including one JUCO commit. Fourteen of the seventeen commits have signed their NLIs but the other two are expected to sign with Florida.

Here is the Florida Gators 2020 baseball recruiting class:

OF Zac Veen

The Florida Gators top commit in the 2020 recruiting class is outfield Zac Veen. The Perfect Game All-American is one of the top high school prospects in the country.

On Perfect Game, Veen is the 12th ranked prospect and sixth ranked outfielder in the country. Veen is a 6’4″ 190 pound left-handed power hitter. He’s got one of the sweetest swings in all of high school baseball. His highest exit velocity has reached 99 mph which is better than 98% in his class. Veen is a five-tool player that has both college and pro scouts raving over him. It’ll be incredibly difficult to keep in the class as he’s projected to go in the first round of the 2020 MLB Draft.

3B Coby Mayo

Another Perfect Game All-American in Florida’s 2020 recruiting class is third baseman Coby Mayo. The Stoneman Douglas third baseman was one of the most wanted recruits once he decommitted from UCF.

On Perfect Game, Mayo is the 15th ranked prospect and third ranked third baseman in the country. The 6’4″ 215 pound corner infield is one of the best power hitters in his class. His exit velocity has reached 105 mph which is top five in the country. He’s a very sound defender with good hands and a strong arm that’s been clocked at 94 mph across the diamond. Coby Mayo could be a future star at Florida if he makes it on campus.

C Mac Guscette

Perfect Game All-American catcher Mac Guscette was another Gators commit that signed his NLI to the University of Florida. Guscette is a 6’0″ 195 pound catcher out of Venice High School in Venice, Florida.

On Perfect Game, Guscette is the 52nd ranked prospect and fifth ranked catcher in the country. Guscette has a 1.88 pop time and has been clocked at 80 mph from behind the plate. He’s a solid hitter with good bat to ball skills and good power. His exit velocity has been clocked at 94 mph but will gain more power as he develops. He’s a solid overall catcher but has more offensive potential than most of the catchers in his class.

SS Colby Halter

One of Florida’s most solid commits throughout his entire recruiting process was Colby Halter. The middle infielder out of Jacksonville, Florida committed to Florida as a freshman and never second guessed his decision.

On Perfect Game, Halter is the 73rd ranked prospect and the fifteenth ranked shortstop in the country. Halter is coming off a busy summer as he played for the United States National 18U Team. Halter is great athlete with a 6.80 60 yard dash. He’s a good defensive shortstop with good footwork and a strong, accurate arm. At the plate, Halter is a line drive hitter with some pop. His max exit velocity has been clocked at 97 mph. It’ll be interesting to see if Halter sticks in the class.

LHP Timothy Manning

Another South Florida commit in the Florida Gators 2020 recruiting class is Timothy Manning. The left-handed pitcher out of Cardinal Gibbons is one of the top ranked pitchers in the country.

On Perfect Game, Manning is the 74th ranked prospect and the seventh ranked left-handed pitcher in the country. At 6’2″ 175 pounds, Manning is a very projectable pitcher that’s very polished. His fastball has been clocked at 90 mph but he has good command on both sides of the plate. He’s got good feel for his curveball but is still developing his changeup. Manning still has a lot of upside as he starts to physically mature.

RHP Lebarron Johnson

Lebarron Johnson is another pitcher in the Florida Gators 2020 recruiting class that’s very projectable. The 6’4″ 200 pound right-handed pitcher is from Jacksonville, Florida and attends Paxon School/Advanced Studies.

On Perfect Game, Johnson is the 140th ranked prospect and 49th ranked right-handed pitcher in the country. Johnson’s fastball tops out at 91 mph with tons run and sink. His slider has a lot of bite to it and gets a lot of swing and misses. His ceiling is one of the highest in the 2020 recruiting cycle. He’s a great athlete as he’s been clocked running a 6.61 60 yard dash. If developed properly, Florida could have one of the best power arms in the SEC.

SS Sterlin Thompson

The Florida Gators grabbed a last minute commit in the 2020 recruiting class and flipped him from one of the in-state schools.

Shortstop and former Stetson commit Sterlin Thompson announced on Sunday that he has committed to the Florida Gators. Thompson was a surprise late get for the Gators and is one of the highest ranked prospect in the country.

On Perfect Game, Thompson is the 154th ranked prospect and 31st ranked shortstop in the country. Thompson is a 6’3″ 185 pound shortstop out of Ocala, Florida and attends North Marion High School. He has a lot of offensive upside with his pull power and still has room to fill in his frame. His exit velocity has been clocked at 93 mph. Thompson could be a future corner infielder as he continues to mature physically.

SS/RHP Jordan Carrion

American Heritage senior Jordan Carrion is one of the top two-way players in the 2020 recruiting cycle. Jordan Carrion is a 6’1″ 160 pound shortstop/right-handed pitcher out of Plantation, Florida.

On Perfect Game, Carrion is the 164th ranked prospect and 33rd ranked shortstop in the country. Carrion is a primary shortstop but could also be a quality pitcher for the Florida Gators. On the mound, Carrion is a two pitch mix pitcher and has been clocked at 92 mph. He’s been used a closer at American Heritage High School. Carrion is the one of the top defensive recruits in the country. He’s got great hand, very smooth and has a strong arm. At the plate, he’s a contact hitter that drives the ball to right field a lot. Good base runner and runs a 6.63 60 yard dash.

3B Wyatt Langford

Wyatt Langford is a power-hitting corner infielder with good speed. He’s been clocked running a 6.75 60 yard dash. His exit velocity has touched 98 mph which is in the top 3% of his class.

Langford can also play catcher as he has a 1.89 pop time and was clocked at 80 mph from behind the plate.

On Perfect Game, Langford is the 184th ranked prospect and the thirteenth ranked third baseman in the country.

Langford played with Canes National in the summer and attends Trenton High School. Over the summer, Langford batted .367 with two home runs, nineteen RBIs and had a 1.035 OPS. Wyatt Langford hasn’t signed his NLI yet but he will on Wednesday.

1B TJ Curd

TJ Curd is a 6’0″ 190 pound first baseman out of Port St. Lucie and attends Treasure Coast High School.

On Perfect Game, Curd is the 227th ranked prospect and the ninth ranked first baseman in the country. Curd is a left-handed hitter with a smooth swing and very good bat speed. He hits the ball with some lift to create a launch angle. His exit velocity has touched 94 mph. On defense, Curd is a very skilled first baseman with good hands and footwork. Curd could also be a solid defensive left fielder if needed. In his junior season, Curd batted .344 with one home run, 18 RBIs and had a 1.113 OPS.

RHP Jackson Nezuh

Another top right-handed pitcher signed in the Florida Gators 2020 recruiting class is Jackson Nezuh. He’s Florida’s eleventh highest ranked commit in their 2020 recruiting class.

Jackson Nezuh is a 6’2″ 175 pound pitcher out of St. Cloud, Florida and attends the TNXL Academy.

On Perfect Game, Nezuh is the 269th ranked prospect and the 90th ranked right-handed pitcher in the country. His fastball sits in the high 80s and tops out at 92 mph. His curveball is his best pitch as he throws it with command and tightness.

SS Tyler Shelnut

Tyler Shelnut is a 6’2″ 175 pound middle infielder out of Fort White High School in Lake City, Florida.

On Perfect Game, Shelnut is the 345th ranked prospect and 72nd ranked shortstop in the country. Shelnut is high ceiling prospect that’ll develop once he starts to fill in his frame. He’s a very sound defensive prospect as that’s his biggest strength. Shelnut has good speed as he’s been clocked running a 6.82 60 yard dash. At the plate, Shelnut is line drive hitter and has most of his power towards his pull side.

RHP Chase Centala

Right-handed pitcher commit Chase Centala was the last 2020 prospect to commit to the Florida Gators (before Thompson flipped from Stetson). Centala made his commit official a few days after the National Showcase.

On Perfect Game, Centala is a top 500 prospect and the 196th ranked right-handed pitcher in the country. At 6’1″ 185 pounds, Centala presents solid strength but still has some room to fill in his frame. His fastball sits in the high 80s and tops out at 91 mph. His best off-speed pitch is his changeup and is developing a slurve. Centala has good command and feel on all three of his pitches.

RHP/INF Carson Pillsbury

Another top two-way prospect in the Florida Gators 2020 recruiting class is Carson Pillsbury. The 6’3″ 200 pounder out of Inverness, Florida is primarily a pitcher.

On Perfect Game, Pillsbury is the 89th ranked prospect and 27th ranked right-handed pitcher in the state of Florida. Pillsbury signed with the Gators over FAU, Florida State, Miami, Ole Miss, UCF and West Virginia.

As a pitcher, Pillsbury’s fastball tops out at 91 mph with sink. As a hitter, Pillsbury makes a lot of contact and drives the ball to all fields. In his junior season, Pillsbury batted .486 with six home runs, 46 RBIs and seven stolen bases. He also had a 6-2 record with a 2.10 ERA and 70 strikeouts in 40 innings pitched.

RHP Blake Purnell

Right-handed pitcher Blake Purnell is a 6’3″ 190 pounder out of St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

On Perfect Game, Purnell is the 115th ranked prospect and 35th ranked right-handed pitcher in the state of Florida. Purnell’s fastball sits in the mid to high 80s and tops out at 90 mph. Purnell committed to the Florida Gators over the summer. He last played for the Ohio Warhawks in WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, Florida.

RHP Ryan Slater

Right-handed pitcher Ryan Slater is a 6’3″ 170 pounder out of East Lake High School in Palm Harbor, Florida.

On Perfect Game, Slater is the 167th ranked prospect and 46th ranked right-handed pitcher in the state of Florida. His fastball has been clocked at 88 mph but will continue to add more velocity as he matures physically. In his junior season, Slater was the 2019 8A-7 Player of the Year. Slater had a 9-2 record with a 0.92 ERA and 71 strikeouts in 68.2 innings pitched.

RHP Franco Aleman (JUCO)

Right-handed pitcher Franco Aleman is the only JUCO commit in the Florida Gators 2020 recruiting class. Out of high school, Aleman was the 80th ranked prospect and 30th ranked right-handed pitcher in the country.

He signed with Florida International University and transferred out after one season. Aleman earned a spot in the weekend rotation as a true freshman. In his freshman season, Aleman had a 3-5 record with a 3.97 ERA and struck out 53.

The 6’6″ 215 pound pitcher currently attends St. John’s River CC. He won’t sign with the Florida Gators until the first week of December. Aleman is a power arm with a fastball tops out at 94 mph and good curveball with lots of depth. Over the summer, Aleman played in the Cape Cod League and dominated with the Falmouth Commodores. He had a 2-0 record with a 1.16 ERA and 27 strikeouts.

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